Proverbs 6:1-5 (NIV)
My son, if you have put up security for your neighbor,
if you have shaken hands in pledge for a stranger,
you have been trapped by what you said,
ensnared by the words of your mouth.
So do this, my son, to free yourself,
since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands:
Go—to the point of exhaustion—
and give your neighbor no rest!
Allow no sleep to your eyes,
no slumber to your eyelids.
Free yourself, like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter,
like a bird from the snare of the fowler.
Proverbs 6:1-5 (KJV)
My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger,
Thou art snared with the words of thy mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth.
Do this now, my son, and deliver thyself, when thou art come into the hand of thy friend; go, humble thyself, and make sure thy friend.
Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids.
Deliver thyself as a roe from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird from the hand of the fowler.
I have read these verses over and over again, and in every different biblical translation I could find. The first time I read it, I thought it ment not to help out a neighbor in need because than your neighbor will keep coming back for more and more, until eventually they drain you of your life. Comparing this to other Scripture verses, I thought there was no way that is what it ment, since Jesus tells us over and over again to help out a neighbor in need. I pushed further and then thought maybe it could mean, don’t spend what you don’t have. When we spend what we don’t have we become slaves to our borrower. That’s not what it could mean though, because the first verse talks about helping a neighbor out of their problems, not you getting out of your own debt. So what in the world can this mean?
It’s a paradox! They are both true!
I love paradoxes because they require us to dig deeper into the bible and they require us to call upon the Lord for His wisdom and understanding.
So what does this mean? (I pray I can explain this properly) The truth is, we can not give what we don’t have. The Lord wants us to help out our neighbor, we are required after all to show love to everyone, Jesus repeats that to us many times. My question to you is, how often do you help out a neighbor and that’s the last time you hear from them? Once you help someone once, they will come back to you again and again. Hey, that is great. You are doing your job showing christian love to one another. How much is to much though? What happens when your neighbor comes to you for help everyday? Can you handle it? If you can, great! But what about your family, what about your relationship with Christ? Does it get in the way with your own personal life? It’s great to give help, but what happens when they become attached to you? When they put their faith in you, instead of Christ? At this point we are held at an impossible role of being Christ? Who can be Christ but Christ?
The point is, yes we are called to show love to one another. But don’t let it come to the point that it traps you! Free yourself from it. From the trap you have set on yourself. When you are giving all of yourself to a neighbor, how will you have time to give yourself to Christ? To your family? To your relationships? Sometimes we have to do what seems selfish, to fully serve His kingdom.
Christ comes first, family comes second, and everything else follows.
(Not going to lie, this is probably one of my hardest posts to write. I have a hard time agreeing with it fully, but deep in my heart, I believe it to be right.)
- Matthew 5. The Sermon On The Mount (bummyla.wordpress.com)
- The left’s biblical illiteracy (wnd.com)
- The Spirit of Love Constrained to Obedience in Christ Jesus. (jim4781205.wordpress.com)