The name of the Lord (verse 10)
“The name of the Lord is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.”
What an amazing refuge is found in Jesus for a believer to take shelter in, no matter how buffeted they may be! Let the child of God sit down and ponder over all his discouragements and difficulties; but in the name of Jesus, he will find something exactly corresponding and answering to his present distress. Is he poor? Christ’s name is riches – even durable riches and righteousness (chapter 8:18). Is he surrounded with enemies? Christ is the mighty God! (Isa. 9:6) Is he sick? Our God has said, “I am the Lord that healeth thee” (Ex. 15:26). Do His people have critical moments, when they need a thousand supplies, which they do not know how to obtain? How blessed is that name by which Abraham referred to the Lord, in his own moment of necessity: Jehovah-jireh – meaning, “the Lord shall provide” (Gen. 22:14). In short, in the name of Jehovah, we have all we need! We have wisdom to guide us, power to help us, grace to save us, mercy to pardon us, and righteousness to justify us.
A favor from the Lord (verse 22)
“Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favor of the Lord.”
The Word of God declares boldly – without any qualifying contingencies – that a wife is a gift from God, and good for man! The Scripture text which says that “a prudent wife is from the Lord” tells the truth indeed; however, it is one of the most obvious of truths. But this text, which teaches us that a wife is a mark of the Lord’s favor, goes higher up in the history of Providence, and deeper into the Wisdom of God. In the beginning, the Creator said, “It is not good for man to be alone.” And even after sin entered into the world, that same word remains as true as ever! Although Satan tempted Eve, Woman is still the best help for Man, because she came from God’s hand. The catastrophe of sin entering the world did not take the Omniscient by surprise, nor did it change His view. And if it was “not good for man to be alone,” even when he was in a state of innocence; how much more true it is that “two are better than one” in a world of care and trouble, so that they may have mutual support, helpfulness, and sympathy. “From the beginning God made man male and female.” In design, He made neither one entirely complete. He left a need in each, so that the two might blend together as one flesh and one spirit. Woman is a good gift from the Lord; and she should be devoutly sought, as well as devoutly acknowledged, as a favor from Him. But how is this good favor to be found? Isaac found it in the same place where every Christian looks for his blessings – as an answer to prayer. And it will not be the result of fortune, or the proof of a man’s own good discernment; but he shall receive it in the same way that Adam received his wife – “from the Lord,” as a token of His special favor.
The Creator has given peculiar honor to His marriage-ordinance. He made marriage in such a way that it would be a perfect picture of His own spiritual relationship with His beloved Bride – His ransomed Church. And when Christ came to earth to make all things new, He expressly took the marriage-union under His own protection. He certified it to be an original appointment of God for man. He purged it of the corruptions which Jewish traditions had laid upon it. And He gave it over to His Church in such lovely terms, that His people ever since have delighted to call Him the Bridegroom, and themselves the Bride who is prepared for His coming!
The Best Friend (verse 24)
“A man that hath friends must show himself friendly.”
When love is received, it is reciprocated. The heart of Jesus yearns for the reciprocated love of His redeemed children, and He grieves when it is not given. Our best friendship is due to be shared with our best Friend; He deserves it and He desires it. “Where are the nine?” He exclaimed with a sigh, when only one of the ten cleansed lepers came back to praise Him. But we may also gather another lesson from this verse. After a river has dried up from its source, the shallow pools remaining in the deeper places of the riverbed become narrower, shallower, and muddier as the summer season advances. If no new supply of water comes down, these pools will soon become dry. Even before they are totally dry, the water is hot and stagnant – unsatisfying and repulsive. And after the water has evaporated, the place where it had been is lifeless. Such are the friendships of this earth, if they are only of the earth. As life draws onward to age, one person and another will fail you. The size and depth of your pool of friendships will diminish quickly – just as secretly and insensibly (but just as surely) as a lake is reduced by evaporation, when the sources of its supply have failed. Friends will grow fewer, and your trust in them will grow feebler. It is a desolate thing indeed to grow old in this world, and to have nothing except the evaporating waters of the world and the worldly to drink from in the day of our greatest need. But for those who are in faith’s union with the Fountain-head of living water, a quite different experience is prepared! To those who look for Christ, He shall appear! In due season, a stream will flow in the desert. The little pools in the riverbed of life will be lost, too – not by drying up, but by overflowing! Therefore, in the springtime of youth, develop a lifelong friendship with Jesus, your very Best Friend; and He will not leave you comfortless when old age comes upon you!
Lord Jesus, we praise You for being our Best Friend and our spiritual Bridegroom, Who will soon return to take us – Your bride – to our home in heaven! Amen.
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