Proverbs 30: 7-9

Two things I ask of you;
deny them not to me before I die:
Remove far from me falsehood and lying;
give me neither poverty or riches;
feed me with the food that is needful for me,
lest I be full and deny you and say,
“Who is the Lord?”
or lest I be poor and steal and profane the name of my God.

Sometimes you may daydream about the possibility of being given three wishes to be fulfilled. The kind of wishes you desire speak a lot about your character. In this passage, Solomon has two wishes or requests: to be kept from lying and to be given only what is needed, so that he would not be tempted to sin.

These requests are grounded in wisdom because a wise person recognizes his weaknesses and dependence on God to deliver him from evil. We are easily prone to falsehood because our fears and prejudices prevent us from hearing the truth, whether it is about God, ourselves, or others.

We are also susceptible to temptation in the area of our possessions. If we have abundance, we take things for granted and even worse, take credit ourselves for any successes. Our interest in spiritual things declines and our faith can be turned into an opportunity for self-exaltation. If we are in need, we may lose confidence in God, cut corners, and even cheat and steal to provide for ourselves. This leads to a sin with greater impact, that of profaning God’s name.

These petitions are meant to lead us to the Lord in utter dependence. He alone can save, protect, and preserve us, and lead us on the righteous path. These prayers are meant to keep us from false pride in ourselves. They are reminders to give God the glory and the honor due his name alone.

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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By Pat Canavan. © 2020 Tenth Presbyterian Church. Website: tenth.org