Living in Righteousness
To set high standards for someone else, and then not live up to them yourself, is something that God truly hates. But it pleases him when we apply the right standards of measurement.
When you act with presumption, convinced that you’re right, don’t be surprised if you fall flat on your face! But walking in humility helps you to make wise decisions. Integrity will lead you to success and happiness, but treachery will destroy your dreams. When Judgment Day comes, all the wealth of the world won’t help you one bit. So you’d better be rich in righteousness, for that’s the only thing that can save you in death. Those with good character walk on a smooth path, with no detour or deviation. But the wicked keep falling because of their own wickedness. Integrity will keep a good man from falling. But the unbeliever is trapped, held captive to his sinful desires. When an evil man dies, all hope is lost, for his misplaced confidence goes in the coffin and gets buried along with him. Lovers of God are snatched away from trouble, and the wicked show up in their place. The teachings of hypocrites can destroy you, but revelation knowledge will rescue the righteous. The blessing that rests on the righteous releases strength and favor to the entire city, but shouts of joy will be heard when the wicked one dies. The blessing of favor resting upon the righteous influences a city to lift it higher, but wicked leaders tear it apart by their words. To quarrel with a neighbor is senseless. Bite your tongue; be wise and keep quiet! You can’t trust gossipers with a secret; they’ll just go blab it all. Put your confidence instead in a trusted friend, for he will be faithful to keep it in confidence. People lose their way without wise leadership, but a nation succeeds and stands in victory when it has many good counselors to guide it. The evil man will do harm when confronted by a righteous man, because he hates those who await good news. A gracious, generous woman will be honored with a splendid reputation, but the woman who hates the truth lives surrounded with disgrace and by men who are cutthroats, only greedy for money.