Minimum Wage Hike? #10

Monday, August 12, 2019

“He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor” (Proverbs 14:31 KJV).

Is this a good verse to support minimum wage increases?

We have easily demonstrated how politicians, religious leaders, or any other “public Bible-quoters” can appeal to verses and misrepresent them. If we are not careful, friends, we too are liable to use the Scriptures to teach anything and everything we want. The truth will be sacrificed to preserve pet theological beliefs. It has happened innumerable times in history, and all kinds of cults and sects and denominations have thus sprung forth.

If we want lies instead of the truth, God will give us over to our heart’s desire (Hebrews 4:12,13). His Word can be our spiritual lifeline, or it can be our spiritual death trap! If we remove verses from their dispensational contexts, those passages will be quite distorted. We can quote the Bible and still be out of God’s will. In fact, when the Lord sees His words “wrested,” perverted to mean something else entirely, it is as unsightly to Him as the human body mangled and disfigured on the rack! Friends, we had better think twice before carelessly grabbing Bible passages and applying them to ourselves.

Second Timothy 2:15 commands, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” If we seek man’s approval, then we will “name and claim” whatever convenient verse we can find to support our theology. However, if we desire God’s approval, then we will “rightly divide the word of truth.” We will be sure to keep “the Dispensation of the Grace of God”—committed to the Apostle Paul’s trust (Ephesians 3:1,2)—separate and distinct from the other dispensations or sets of Divine instructions found in Scripture.

Furthermore, we will recognize Paul as “the apostle of the Gentiles” (Romans 11:13), the Lord’s spokesman to us. We will see his epistles, Romans through Philemon, as to and about us. If we want some insightful passages concerning the workplace (employers and employees), Ephesians 6:5-9 and Colossians 3:22–4:1 are verses applicable to us in this the Dispensation of the Grace of God. Today’s Scripture, however, is another matter entirely!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “What is a ‘besom?’

Minimum Wage Hike? #9

Sunday, August 11, 2019

“He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor” (Proverbs 14:31 KJV).

Is this a good verse to support minimum wage increases?

Today’s Scripture says he who oppresses the poor “reproacheth his Maker.” The idea here is a disrespectful provocation or irreverent challenge. “I am disobeying You, God! What are You going to do about it?” This blasphemous attitude will be especially true of the Antichrist in the ages to come, as well as descriptive of his followers. In stark contrast, the man who honors or esteems the LORD God will be merciful toward the less fortunate. Again, look at it prophetically.

According to James 2:14-26, the Jews are to materially bless their believing brethren when economic troubles arrive because of the Antichrist. “[14] What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? [15] If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, [16] And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? [17] Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.” If they fail to treat the poor with due respect—following the Mosaic Law and the other prophetic Scriptures—they are cooperating with Satan’s evil world system (cf. today’s Scripture).

Moreover, the Book of Proverbs is Divine wisdom for Israel to use in the time after our Dispensation of Grace. Indeed, they are in incredible distress, but God cares for them and is aware of their troubles. As today’s Scripture says, “He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor.” The evildoers are not getting away with mistreating the saints. Almighty God will not sit idly by forever: at the appropriate time, He will make His move to retaliate against and triumph over His enemies. Satan is thoroughly enjoying himself as he torments the Little Flock, but as the Book of Job underscores, believing Israel will regain everything that the Antichrist took from her… and more.

Now we conclude this devotionals arc….

Minimum Wage Hike? #8

Saturday, August 10, 2019

“He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor” (Proverbs 14:31 KJV).

Is this a good verse to support minimum wage increases?

Once the Antichrist rises to power and institutes his corrupt economic policies, the believing Jews in Israel’s prophetic program will have indescribable economic hardships (Revelation 13:1-18, especially verses 15-18). This is actually the context of James 2:14-26, the “faith without works is dead” passage that hardly anyone understands because of universal religious confusion.

Read what the Holy Spirit penned through King Solomon in Ecclesiastes 5:8: “If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they.” Remember, this is to be understood in light of Psalms and Proverbs (cf. today’s Scripture). Believing Jews in Israel’s program should not be terrorized when they see the poor—themselves—oppressed. The Antichrist will cut them off from his economic system, and financial difficulties will mount and multiply for them. Justice is not being carried out. Politicians are crooked and cruel.

To comfort the suffering Little Flock, Israel’s believing remnant, Solomon enjoins them to bear the following in mind: “for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they.” The Judge of all the Earth is watching the unfairness. He is omnipotent, infinitesimally far more power than any and all human governmental leaders. While injustice prevails at the moment, He is en route to Earth to right all wrongs. He sees the mercilessness of the Antichrist! He hears the cries of His saints! He is coming to take vengeance on their enemies!

Psalm 72: “[12] For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no helper. [13] He shall spare the poor and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy.” The Second Coming of Christ is God’s response to the prayers of the anguishing Jewish saints. Refer back to Psalm 10 and read it again in its entirety. Go to Psalm 37 and read it in its entirety. Indeed, the Lord Jesus Christ will deliver the poor from the wicked…

Minimum Wage Hike? #7

Friday, August 9, 2019

“He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor” (Proverbs 14:31 KJV).

Is this a good verse to support minimum wage increases?

James 2:5 says: “Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?” Chapter 1, verse 1: “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.” These are Jews “poor of this world.” Why are they “poor?” Remember, they have followed the Lord’s commandment in Luke 12:33—“Sell that ye have, and give alms….” James is writing to these people, who (now in Acts) are financially struggling (cf. Acts 2:44-45; Acts 4:32-37; Romans 15:26).

After our Dispensation of Grace, the Abrahamic Covenant applies as before. Those who bless Israel will be blessed of God; those who curse Israel will be cursed of God (Genesis 12:1-3). Matthew chapter 25: “[31] When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: [32] And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: [33] And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.” When Jesus Christ returns at His Second Coming (yet future), we see here “the Judgment of the Nations.” He evaluates how Gentiles treated believing Israel.

Read carefully Matthew 25:31-46. Make special note that this is not to or about us the Church the Body of Christ. These Gentiles in Israel’s program are being rewarded or punished based on how they treated believing Jews. How did they bless Israel? They helped Israel financially. Jews believing in Jesus as Messiah were hungry, thirsty, homeless, naked, sick, and imprisoned. Unable to neither buy nor sell (Revelation 13:15-18), they had suffered terribly under the Antichrist (cf. today’s Scripture).

Psalm 10:17,18: “LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear: To judge the fatherless and the oppressed, that the man of the earth may no more oppress.” Here is the Antichrist’s destruction….

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Why do Amos 4:4 and Amos 5:5 give opposite commands?

Minimum Wage Hike? #6

Thursday, August 8, 2019

“He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor” (Proverbs 14:31 KJV).

Is this a good verse to support minimum wage increases?

During His earthly ministry, Christ uttered some controversial words: “If thou wilt be perfect [not sinless perfection but complete/mature], go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me” (Matthew 19:21; cf. Mark 10:21; Luke 18:22). Were the Messianic saints to literally sell their physical possessions and give the money to the poor? Indeed, for they actually did that later in Acts 2:44,45 and Acts 4:32-37. (Read chapter 5 to see what happened to Ananias and Sapphira for disobeying the Lord!) Why did Christ instruct them thus?

In Revelation chapter 13, we read of the coming Antichrist, whose reign will involve major economic changes: “[16] And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: [17] And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.” That Israel’s believing remnant avoid having to choose between following Antichrist or retaining their wealth, they were to give up those material goods before Antichrist’s appearance. The Jewish saints in early Acts acted in accordance with this reality.

With the Apostle Paul’s ministry and the Dispensation of Grace entering in mid-Acts, our mystery program interrupted—and is still delaying—the prophetic program. Since the Antichrist has yet to arrive, God’s earthly kingdom is still absent: that prosperous kingdom the poor Jewish saints would have enjoyed following Antichrist, never came in Acts. Hence, Paul speaks of “the poor saints which are at Jerusalem” (Romans 15:26). Their common fund has now depleted. They have become poor—not because of slothfulness, disability, or meager earnings—but because they followed God’s will. (According to Romans 15:25-27 and 1 Corinthians 16:1-4, Paul took up contributions from his Gentile converts to help them.)

The poor people suffering in Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Acts, typify (preview) the experience of Messianic Jews once our Dispensation of Grace closes….

Minimum Wage Hike? #5

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

“He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor” (Proverbs 14:31 KJV).

Is this a good verse to support minimum wage increases?

Very few people realize Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon form one unit and thus interpret each other. This “heart” or “wisdom” literature is both rooted in literal history and typical of future events. For example, the Holy Spirit through King Solomon wrote today’s Scripture with both history and prophecy in mind. As we move on the Bible timeline toward the end times, the last days of Israel’s prophetic program, it becomes more evident that the Bible Books before and after Paul’s writings are mirror images. History loops to the future, and the future loops to history. What preceded our Dispensation of Grace predicts what will happen once it closes.

With prophecy in view, the “poor” being “oppressed” in today’s Scripture goes far beyond the issue of little to no wages. For instance, read Psalm 10: “[1] Why standest thou afar off, O LORD? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble? [2] The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined. [8] He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages: in the secret places doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor. [9] He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lieth in wait to catch the poor: he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net. [10] He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones…. [14] Thou hast seen it; for thou beholdest mischief and spite, to requite it with thy hand: the poor committeth himself unto thee; thou art the helper of the fatherless.”

Psalm 12:5: For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, saith the LORD; I will set him in safety from him that puffeth at him.” Psalm 72:4: “He [The Lord Jesus Christ] shall judge the poor of the people, he shall save the children of the needy, and shall break in pieces the oppressor [same Hebrew word as “oppresseth” in today’s Scripture].” The LORD is returning in wrath, and paltry paychecks are hardly the controversy….

(In order to bring you a special devotional tomorrow, we will temporarily suspend this devotionals arc.)

Minimum Wage Hike? #4

Monday, August 5, 2019

“He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor” (Proverbs 14:31 KJV).

Is this a good verse to support minimum wage increases?

Doubtless, the Law of Moses shows us JEHOVAH God was quite merciful toward individuals living in poverty. Jews were to lend money to their disadvantaged brethren without charging “usury” or interest (Exodus 22:25; Leviticus 25:35-37). They were commanded to do whatever they could to alleviate the financial struggles of their relatives—and even neighboring Gentiles (Leviticus 25:25,35,39-43; Deuteronomy 15:7-15). Fields were never to be completely stripped during harvest, lest the poor passersby starve (Leviticus 19:9,10; Leviticus 23:22). In the seventh or sabbatical year, the land was not to be sown or harvested; it was to be left to grow wild to feed needy people and animals (Exodus 23:11). Under no circumstances whatsoever were poor hired servants—Jews or Gentiles—to be mistreated.

Deuteronomy chapter 24: “[14] Thou shalt not oppress [same Hebrew word as “oppressed” in today’s Scripture] an hired servant that is poor and needy, whether he be of thy brethren, or of thy strangers [Gentiles/foreigners] that are in thy land within thy gates: [15] At his day thou shalt give him his hire, neither shall the sun go down upon it; for he is poor, and setteth his heart upon it: lest he cry against thee unto the LORD, and it be sin unto thee.” Also, Leviticus 19:13: “Thou shalt not defraud thy neighbour, neither rob him: the wages of him that is hired shall not abide with thee all night until the morning.” Payment was to be proportional to the work. It was a fair transaction for both employer and employee: it was not some exorbitant amount exchanged for meager labor. Furthermore, the paycheck was given on the very day of the job.

In the context of today’s Scripture, the Jew is not following the Law of Moses concerning these matters. Dishonesty and inequality are present. JEHOVAH God, who has given this Law, has been disrespected. Had they honored the God of Abraham, they would have valued the servants He had instructed them not to defraud! Now, we add a prophetic layer to what we have learned thus far….