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  • William T. Howe Ph.D.

February 27, 2023

The Bible Edge

Everyone needs an Edge, Believers can have the Bible Edge

Proverbs 19:17

He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.

Today a Bible Edge thought will be presented that requires a thinking cap to be put on, adjusted, and well used to fully comprehend. The ramifications of this Bible Edge thought reaches into every walk of life, every strata of society, and answers many difficult questions. How is that for an introduction? It makes a big promise does it not? Hopefully, it has not overpromised, but here goes. Simply put today’s Bible Edge is this: God blesses the obedience to His laws regardless of whether the person obeying His laws believes in Him or not. Hold on…please don’t turn me off yet!

I learned this lesson years ago. We were on a tee box waiting for our turn to lose our golf ball. While waiting, a huge airplane flew right over us preparing to land at a nearby airport. One of the guys in our group was a pilot for an international airline at the time. I looked at him and said something like this: “I do not understand how that airplane stays in the sky.” He responded: “It stays in the air by utilizing God’s laws of thermodynamics.” I then said: “That kind of thinking about God must make you very unpopular with the other pilots that do not share your faith.” Or something like that. Then my friend said something profound that changed the way I look at things. He said, “You don’t have to believe in God to use and benefit from His laws.” He’s a smart man!

Today’s verse is one example of such a law. Evidently whether a person believes in the Lord God in Heaven or not, if they practice benevolence toward the impoverished, they lend to the Lord and the Lord will repay that person. This standalone statement of Proverbs has no conditions attached to it. Anyone, anywhere, of any standing, if in the faith or not has God’s promise on this matter. Just as Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount, God sends rain, and raises the sun on the just and unjust. (Matthew 5:45) So too does God bless the just and unjust alike in their obedience to His laws.

Sometimes God’s people think that He only blesses them. No doubt, there are promises that are given to God’s children. For example, II Corinthians 5:17. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. But many of the commands of God found in His Word are not conditional to being one of His believers.

This thing of God blessing those who obey His Law regardless of their relationship with Him explains many things that so many wonder about and seem troubled by. Habits like honesty, hard work, benevolence, honoring others, going the extra mile, etc. are not exclusive to the saved. Neither are the blessings that come from them.

William Howe, Ph.D.

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