Eternal Savior Lutheran Church

A member of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

2688 North Park Drive
Lafayette, CO 80026
303-665-6105
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June 5 – Repentant Masters Of Mischief

“Whoever plans to do evil will be called a schemer. The devising of folly is sin, and the scoffer is an abomination to mankind.” Proverbs 24:8,9

Devotional Thought For The Day

The translations of this proverb into English struggle to convey the full meaning.  The “schemer” [or “mischievous person” – KJV] is actually a “lord” or “master” of mischief and evil.  Anyone who plans to do evil is designated such – and this is dismal for us, for we can all remember times when our hearts fastened upon some evil and we began planning out the strategy to accomplish it.  In fact this occurs daily in our hearts and minds. The proverb identifies all of this as “sin,” and warns against it. Indeed, we should flee from all evil thoughts, but this takes immense time and effort in retraining our hearts and minds, which are inclined to evil thoughts and habituated to plotting.  Note that even the mere devising of “folly” or “foolishness” is sin. It is a waste of the brainpower God has imbued us with, and a waste of time and life – opportunities to love and care for others.

We perhaps look at such judgments as being overly harsh – since they describe a good deal of common human life.  However, this is a matter of perspective, and such thoughts should lead us consider how different our thoughts and ways are from God’s thoughts and ways. That we are aptly described by this Word of God and convicted should move us to deep repentance – such that will remove any notions of trusting in ourselves or our ability to “reform” ourselves or “do good works” to commend ourselves to God. Under the reckoning and accounting of His Law there is no hope for any human being. But God in His rich mercy and love for us has provided redemption for us, and sent His Son to save us from condemnation and hell. His blood cleanses us from all sin, so that “whoever believes in Him has everlasting life.” [Jn. 3:16]  But some are willing to plot evil even against this gracious Gospel of God’s free, wondrous, and beautiful love for us.

Such repentance moves us to turn away from evil thoughts when we have them, and to honestly recognize what we are plotting. The unbelieving justify their evil thoughts, and continue on in them; God’s Spirit enables believers to think clearly and honestly, and in godly repentance to return to God’s gracious mercy and forgiveness. Those who reject the Spirit’s guidance continue on in their “defensible” evils, and end up as “scoffers.” These folks justify themselves and elevate themselves above others.  In so doing they reject truth and honesty about their own sin, they refuse to repent and change their thinking, they repudiate God’s gracious mercy and forgiveness, and they plague and afflict others with their arrogant hypocrisy, especially those who have fled to God’s gracious mercy and forgiveness in Christ Jesus as their only refuge.

The wicked scoffers gather together and relish their foolishness, but they remain “an abomination to mankind.”  Take care never to fall in with this crowd – for in the end they also turn on and devour each other. And it all begins with our “thinking,” and thinking that comes quite naturally to us, and that seems intuitively to be so right. Lord, have mercy!

Prayer For The Day

Dear Lord Jesus, You encountered scoffers and schemers throughout the time of Your earthly sojourn, including especially those who depended upon their own works and righteousness. They came from all walks of life and professions, but they had one thing in common – they rejected Your message that calls all of us to repentance and faith. Forbid, Lord, that our own sinful predilections bind us in such wickedness and sin. Grant us Your Spirit so that we may walk humbly before You in genuine repentance and the peace and joy of faith in You.  Amen.