Diligent Versus Slothful

Monday, September 3, 2012

“The slothful man roasteth not that which he took in hunting: but the substance of a diligent man is precious” (Proverbs 12:27 KJV).

Today, we in the United States celebrate Labor Day, a day to remember our hard-working citizens.

Beloved, when God placed the first man, Adam, on earth, Adam was not to loaf around, doing nothing: “And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it” (Genesis 2:15). Adam was to cultivate the land (that is, be a farmer and a caretaker, to prepare it so God could come down and dwell with the human race on earth). Originally, Adam’s work was easy, but once sin entered, farming grew more difficult, even as it is to this day (see Genesis 3:17-19).

The book of Proverbs (12:24; 15:19; 18:9; 19:15,24; 21:25; 22:13; 24:30; 26:13-15) says much about slothfulness, or laziness. “Slothfulness casteth into a deep sleep; and an idle [motionless] soul shall suffer hunger” (19:15). Proverbs 26:14 provides an amusing, vivid description: “As the door turneth upon his hinges, so doth the slothful upon his bed.” The only movement the door and the slothful make is rotating about a permanently fixed point: some hinges and a mattress, respectively.

In today’s Scripture, we read about the “slothful man” who relies on someone else to hunt game to provide his food, and the “diligent man” who works hard to obtain his own “substance” (possessions, wealth). What a contrast! Proverbs 13:4 amplifies: “The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat [prosperous].” And Proverbs 21:25 expounds further: “The desire of the slothful killeth him; for his hands refuse to labour.”

According to 1 Thessalonians 4:11,12 and 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15, the Apostle Paul rebuked lazy members of the Body of Christ. Ephesians 4:28 concludes: “Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.”

Saints, let us not be lazy, for God’s Word says working is a “good thing!” 🙂