by: FCC Staff
“Surely, I am too stupid to be a man. I have not the understanding of a man.” Proverbs 30:2
Wow! Agur, the person who wrote these words, either had a low sense of self-worth or he was an intensely humble person. Or maybe he was just an intensely sarcastic person. Either way, these words set the tone for Proverbs 30 which is a series of entertaining and truthful thoughts on God, His creation, himself and others. I encourage you to read through it.
It’s probably not healthy for a person to use such strong language like ‘stupid’ to describe themselves and think so little of themselves. The Biblical story clearly assigns a high value to man as the pinnacle of God’s creation. David reveals this in Psalm 8. After looking at and contemplating the beauty of God’s creation, he asks “what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?” (Psalm 8:4) The Psalm goes on to explain just how much value God places on man. And if there be any doubt remaining, all we have to do is look at the Cross which offers definitive proof of the value that God places on man.
We are highly loved and valued. Yet it is important to have the proper view of oneself with regard to God. I think that ultimately this is the message that Agur is trying to get across in this Proverb. Chapter 30 verse 4 asks five questions meant to drive this point home. 1) “Who has ascended to heaven and come down?” 2) “Who has gathered the wind in his fists?” 3) “Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment?” 4) “Who has established all the ends of the earth?” 5) “What is his name, and what is his son’s name?” Agur finishes with “Surely you know!” Exclamation point. The answer to all five questions is of course God. The terms ‘Creator’ and ‘Creation’ tell it all – God is one and man is the other.
As the Proverb advances, Agur reveals several of the truths he has learned about this life. Things like: he is not as wise as God, there are ‘mysteries’ of life he can’t understand, the temptation of riches is strong, controlling one’s anger is important, foolish behavior should be avoided and how we treat others is important. This is a fairly concise yet complete list. The Old Testament prophet Micah captured the idea even more concisely: “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8)
When it comes to our relationship with ourselves, others, and God, balance and prioritization are key. We were created by God to worship Him and serve others – that should be the starting point for how we arrange our thoughts and lives. C.S. Lewis captured it well - “Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it is thinking of yourself less.”
Prayer for Today Heavenly Father, I praise you for who you are and what you have created. Thank you for loving and giving me value. Help me to order my life in accordance with the purpose for which you have created me – worshipping you and serving others.