Proverbs 24:16 (NASB)
For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again, But the wicked stumble in time of calamity.
Are you a righteous person? If so, then you should be able to count on two hands the number of times you have messed up in a major way…but that number should not exceed seven, right? Wrong. This proverb is not establishing a line in the sand when it comes to trials and mistakes and flat-out sin. In fact, it is doing the opposite.
Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery…but that was just the start of his trouble. Job’s commitment to God was put on trial by Satan himself. Hannah had no children and was verbally and emotionally abused by her husband’s other wife because of it. David took another man’s wife and then had him killed when he discovered she was pregnant. Daniel’s enemies had to create a law in order to catch him doing something “wrong” for which he was then cast into the lion’s den. Peter denied even knowing Jesus. But God:
Rescued Joseph, Restored Job, Rewarded Hannah, Forgave David, Protected Daniel, and Established Peter.
You have made mistakes and will continue to do so. You have sinned and will continue to do so. You have faced tough times in the past and you certainly will face them again sometime in the future, but the truth is this: Christians will “fall” over and over but that’s ok – as long as we learn from our mistakes and work to trust in the Lord! The history of the Church itself testifies to the truth of today’s Proverb! God will bring you through it all – strengthen you in the midst of it – and reward you forever and ever for your faith in His Son!
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all; Evil will slay the wicked; the foes of the righteous will be condemned. The Lord will rescue his servants; no one who takes refuge in him will be condemned. Psalm 34: 18-19, 21-22
Amen and Amen.