Under three things the earth trembles;
under four it cannot bear up:
a slave when he becomes king,
and a fool when he is filled with food;
an unloved woman when she gets a husband,
and a maidservant when she displaces her mistress.
Do you know how to prevent earthquakes from occurring? Foundations from crumbling? The writer speaks of things that stir up trouble in the world and in the home: an unqualified person usurping power; an unprincipled person with too much food and drink; a hate-filled, condemning spouse; and an adulterer. These are all things to avoid if we desire peace in our lives.
Scripture provides “everything we need for life and godliness” (1 Peter 1:3). Solid foundations of biblical authority will keep us from falling. Without these foundations we see assortments of coup d’etat in the world; the rich and famous indulging and killing themselves with power, sex and drugs; marital strife; and unfaithfulness ending in divorce and the destruction of families and children.
We can prevent these seismic catastrophes. The writer says in Proverbs 27:12, “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty” (NIV). Let us listen to him, but especially, to the ultimate Author—the One who has provided an unshakeable foundation.