Updated: Nov 3, 2022
The wisest man that ever lived wrote,
“A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle.”
Solomon was King and in a position of leadership yet we see in these words that people who have grievances do not easily trust their leadership. People get disappointed and even curse the Lord himself. A similar mistrust exists between those who labor for their living and those who steward capital and the “means of production”. For someone trapped in the darkness of bitter malcontent, all the reassurance and love sometimes are not enough to move them to act in their own best interests.
The Apostle John repeats the words of our Lord in writing this, “By this, all men know that you are my disciples if you love one another”. But not every man and woman is in a place where they can accept the love that they are offered. Anger leads to bitterness and when that biter tonic sits undisturbed by love, in the pit of the stomach it hardens a man so that his heart becomes calloused.
But for those who have ears, The Apostle Matthew repeats the great lessons that our Lord Jesus taught us about how to live with purpose, how to make our lives truly matter,
“Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I hungered, and you gave me meat: I was thirsty, and you gave me drink: I was a stranger and you took me in: Naked and you clothed me: I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison, and you came to me.”
Similarly in Acts, it is written “I have showed you all things, how that so laboring you ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, it is more blessed to give than to receive”.
Sometimes when something sounds too good to be true, if you just pause, and give the Lord room to work on your heart, you will find that not only are these promises true but that there are a great deal more riches and hope in the light of our Lord, than there is in the shadows of the present path you are taking. Walking with the Lord leads to joy and life.
(Sources, Proverbs 18:19, John 13:35, Matthew 25:34-40, Acts 20:35-36)