The Rewards of Righteousness
Pastor John Sloan
Introduction: “And his commands are not burdensome” (1 John 5:3). Because God loves us, he wants us to thrive. And as our Creator, he has the wisdom to know how we should live and what actions usher in the greatest delight. Consequently, his commands are not to hinder us or keep us down, but given to foster our joy. But if that’s the case, why do we find it so hard to trust and obey?
Questions for Discussion & Discovery
1. Four times in six verses (vv. 4, 6, 8, 9) the Teacher says that the righteous are “delivered” from trouble, difficulty, and death. How does this work practically?
2. When we experience personal tragedy, should we conclude that it’s the Lord punishing us? Why or why not?
3. What are the two types of righteousness presented in the Scriptures?
4. If a person is caught in a sin, why is the admonition to “stop it” insufficient and ineffective counsel? What’s a better approach?
5. What spiritual blessings are ours in Christ? How does this encourage you?
1. “We dare not read more into the proverbial statement than there is. By their very nature they are generalized statements, intended to give advice rather than establish rigorous codes by which God works.” – Grant Osborne
2. Read Proverbs 11:1-10.
“Righteousness delivers from death” (v. 4).
4. “The righteousness of the upright delivers them” (v.6).
5. “The righteous is delivered from trouble” (v. 8).
6. “By knowledge the righteous are delivered” (v. 9).
7. Practical Righteousness
8. 01. Right living brings with it a host of natural positive outcomes.
9. “The crookedness of he wicked destroys them” (v.3).
10. “The wicked falls by his own wickedness” (v.5).
11. “The wicked walks into trouble” (v.8).
12. “The mouth of the godless destroys him” (v.9).
13. “Comparison is the thief of joy.”
14. 02. Rejecting God’s design is a recipe for difficulty and trouble.
15. “There are two ways in which [we] may attempt to displace from the human heart its love of the world—either by a demonstration of the world’s vanity; or, by setting forth another object … as more worthy of its attachment, so as that the heart shall be prevailed upon not to resign an old affection, which shall have nothing to succeed it, but to exchange an old affection for a new one.” – Thomas Chalmers
16. 03. Sinful (thus, harmful) desires can only be overcome when affections far more enthralling and beautiful capture the heart.
17. Positional Righteousness
18. “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” – 2 Corinthians 5:21