A. A man is not established by wickedness,
B. But the root of the righteous cannot be moved.
God has given man free will. Freedom to choose his path, that is, but not the freedom to choose the consequences. (cliche, I know.)
For instance, a man is not established by wickedness. There is no stability in a wicked lifestyle. Choose the lifestyle, know the consequence.
The words seem to convey a sense of grappling for stability and establishment in part A. Indicating that the wicked seek stability, but will never find it (so long as they identify as, “the wicked”).
I love the contrasting parallelism presented in the book of proverbs. The next part of the verse doesn’t simply insert “righteousness” in place of “wickedness” and then proclaim the opposite (positive) consequence.
It is implied in part B that the establishment, immovability, or stability that the wicked from part A are implicitly seeking (but will never achieve), is already present for the righteous, and it simply cannot be moved. This makes for a far more dramatic contrast.
In part B, the grappling for stability simply isn’t there. The reason is because the root is already established. Why? Because of righteousness.
I think it is significant that the writer doesn’t direct the righteous on how to develop this establishment, or stability. He is only making a statement- those who are righteous, are already established. His root is so firm, it cannot be moved, and hence he cannot be moved.
Secondly, the wording indicates that the righteous was not seeking establishment itself. He sought after wisdom- the way of righteousness. His focus wasn’t on the result, or the reward. His focus is, and must be on Christ- the son of righteousness. And, as God designed it to be, the result is his establishment.
He cannot be moved!
Thanks for joining me this week in meditating in the book of proverbs. If you’d like to join me, and the many others who read a proverb a day, I’d love to hear your thoughts as well on a verse each week. I have been reading a proverb a day for years, and I am amazed at how much I continue to learn from it.
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