Proverbs in 365 Devotions
Proverbs 18:23 The poor use entreaties, but the rich answer roughly.
Being Poor To Be Rich
What is an entreaty? An entreaty is a plea or request… It can be a solicitation like begging or pleading… these are all entreaties.
So why might the poor use this kind of appeal towards others?
The reason I think is because they have little or no leverage, or sway; people don’t jump when they speak… their opinions and counsel carry little weight with those in a higher financial class. It is the rich who predominantly control politics and the rules of the world. Even in America where we live in a type of representative democracy the wealthy have influence in law making and the overall order of things from small town politics all the way up to state and national.
So yes, the poor use entreaties… They do not command others… they ask and beseech… No one backs them up… they have no big stick that can overcome the club of money and wealth.
Today I'm not addressing the reason someone is poor in money or who’s fault it is that someone is impoverished or rich. I’m not talking about discerning the ethical complex web of poverty and wealth.
In our text I think Solomon is simply saying what he said. The poor use entreaties, but the rich answer roughly.
You see whatever a person is rich it has the potential to give him pride and a this world sense of power… Someone rich in athletic abilities might answer roughly to a whimp like me. If I have the courage I might ask a body builder to help me move a piece of furniture or refrigerator… On the other hand if the athielite is poor in school work he might ask someone who is rich in smarts (not I)… And this smart wimpy person might even use his power to make demands of him answering him roughly… “Listen you bully, if you don’t quit picking on me and my friends I won’t help you with your homework”.
Look, that's the way this broken world has functioned throughout time… broken people rich in power and influence answer roughly and those poor use entreaties.
Let’s think about this in relation to the Kingdom of God.
Their really is such a thing as being Spiritually poor?
In Revelation 3:17 Jesus said this to the Church of Laodicea:
17 For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.
And to the church in Smyrna he said:
“‘I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich)”…. (Revelation 2:9)
So a person can be poor in money and athletic abilities… they can be poor in education and physical talents… And be rich in God.
Question: Do we who are spiritually poor still use entreaties and does God who is rich still answer roughly? Yes and Yes but there are amazing differences in the way the broken world and a perfect God approach these truths. Lets look at some of the distinctions.
First, no one is truly rich. The things we have are on loan for a while… while our Creator owns all things for eternity.
Number 2: The poor of the world annoy the rich with their entreaties… There are many text throughout the bible that tell us that our Creator… our God encourages us to call on him.
Romans 10:13 says: For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Next: The rich of the world may answer roughly. Our God gives mercy and grace and even sent his only Son to be paid for our sin seen in his own death, burial and resurrection. God calls us his children and yet he will answer roughly to all who want his glory for themselves.
In Matthew 5:3 Jesus said this: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
We are bankrupt and no leverage with God within our brokenness and we entreat thee Father.