Proverbs in 365 Devotions
Proverbs 19:12 A king’s wrath is like the growling of a lion, but his favor is like dew on the grass.
Supreme Ruler And Leader
Today Solomon gives us and example of one character… A king. Being a king himself he may have been considering his own position in comparison to kings throughout the world. And to go along with this character Solomon gives us two metaphors.
Let’s look at the first: “A king’s wrath is like the growling of a lion”.
A king has the right to have extreme anger. It is not a sin for him especially if he is a good and just king. It’s a good thing for him to be angry with people who steal or kill or take advantage of the poor, the unlearned or those who cannot defend themselves. He is the final judge. Sometimes kings would make individual judgments against wrongs within their kingdom. If not a good king would at least set up judges who would discern truth with fairness to all concerned. But the king took responsibility for the justice system in his kingdom.
As for us… it’s not a sin to be angry with sin… not only in the lives of others but in our own life as well.
But we are not king of our own life or anyone else’s. Even our nation is not run by kings or dictations. In the United States we have a system of laws which govern us with judges and jury’s that are intended to help to make sure justice is given at least to the best of our knowledge. Therefore, since we are not king or judge we are not to execute extreme anger by showing wrath toward individuals who are accused of taking advantage of others. Since there is no king in our administration we let the laws of our own system with judge, jury, lawyers, police officers and such use the authority given to them to carry out justice. And yes… even then in our system of government there are lawful ways to contest wrongs done in our own system.
So while a kings wrath (and we might say a jury’s wrath) is like the growling of a lion… A kings favor is like dew on the grass. This metaphor… “dew on the grass” is an image that make me think of a new day… even new life, as in spring… It clearly invokes “favor” because it’s in the text. It’s a new day… it’s a fresh slate. The king has said “not guilty”. It’s peace and joy and acceptance… It’s “happy ever after”.
Of course there is only one King who is supreme ruler and its not Putin of Russia or Kim Jong-un of North Korea… whom are referred to as supreme rulers… It’s Jesus Christ and as it says in Acts 10:42 “he is the one appointed by God to be judge of the living and the dead”.
Speaking of a king today's text says “his favor is like dew on the grass”.
And the true supreme leader… the King of kings… Jesus… His favor is implied in Luke 2:14 as proclaimed by the angels to the shepherds when they the announced the good news of Jesus birth:
“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” That word pleased can mean satisfaction, delight, or kindness and is even interpreted as on one whom his favor rests.
Jesus is good news because through him we escape the wrath of the King that we deserve for our rebellion. If we delight in him we are granted Gods favor through Jesus righteousness being given… even imputed to us and through him taking the wages of our sin by dying on the Cross… And Jesus is good news because in him raising from the grave he gives us power over sin in this life and will raise us up incorruptible to be with him forever.