Eating and Satisfied
1. The proverb states that righteous men eat well and the wicked go hungry.
2. And once again, we must remind ourselves that these are Proverbs: truth crystallized… and sayings that do NOT cover every situation.
3. Certainly Solomon knew of many exceptions to this principle.
a. As a king, he would no doubt have known many of the wealthy land owners and the nobility… many of whom were ungodly wicked men… but who ate quite well.
b. And no doubt as king, Solomon heard many cases where righteous men were cheated, unjustly treated and who were very poor… and who did not eat so well.
c. In fact, he even wrote about such godly but poor men. (Prov.15:16-17)
d. Solomon KNEW that the righteous are often poor… and he knew that the wicked were often wealthy.
e. Nevertheless, there is a principle in Prov. 13:25 that Solomon thought was worth writing down… and so did the Holy Spirit!
The righteous eateth to the satisfying of his soul….
1. The righteous will have enough… AND they will know that they have enough (satisfaction).
a. They are not gluttons… they eat till they have satisfied their appetite… they do not eat until they could not possibly stuff in another bite or they’d explode!
b. The righteous eat in moderation… and are satisfied with moderation. He eats till he is satisfied and then he stops.
c. The righteous soon discovers that eating in moderation is enough. That’s all you need! All we need is enough.
d. God promises enough to satisfy our needs…not enough to satisfy all our lusts.
2. Enough can be as good as a feast! Prov.15:17
a. A dinner of herbs is enough to satisfy the appetite. You don’t need steak and lobster.
b. In fact, a modest meal of vegetables is far BETTER than a feast of meat and potatoes with all the trimmings IF there is love… as opposed to a wealthy home with a huge meal served by servants… where everyone hates each other…
c. Who had the better meal? Who enjoyed the meal more?
d. Try to put your own house into this scenario:
• I’m sure that every one of us here tonight have experienced family problems where there was fighting, friction, frustration, anger, unkind words, maybe even yelling, and hostility… you all sat around and ate supper with a big pit in your stomach…
• Under that cloud, it doesn’t matter whether you had filet mignon or a just a bowl of rice… it wouldn’t be a very enjoyable meal…
• Regardless of the quantity of the meal or the quality of the food… it would not be enjoyable.
• And yet at other times, when there is real joy in the home… mom can go to the cupboards and discover she has very few ingredients to work with…
• But if there is love in the home… and all are in a good mood… getting along well… and trusting in the Lord—and everybody gathered around the kitchen to make a game out of trying to put a meal together out of three stalks of celery, a half a cup of peanuts, a can of peas, a can of tomatoes, and a little left over tuna… that meagerly meal can be extremely enjoyable! Enjoyable putting it together—and enjoyable laughing about how awful it tastes!
• In fact, that meal time could even become one of the favorite family memories!
3. You don’t need shrimp and lobster to have an enjoyable meal.
a. All you really need to have an enjoyable meal is a bowl full of “herbs”—and people sitting around the table who love each other… and love the Lord… and are content with whatever God has provided.
b. I doubt if the Queen of England has never had such a good meal!
c. All you need is enough.
4. It is the LORD who provides enough to satisfy.
a. The point of the passage is that GOD blesses the righteous with enough to eat…
b. Prov. 10:3 – The Lord will not suffer the soul of the righteous to famish.
c. It was part of the promise God made to Israel under the Mosaic covenant… (Deut. 28:1-5) God promised to bless their crops and provide enough in their basket if they obeyed… if they were righteous.
d. If they did NOT obey… they had no such promise (28:15,17)
e. Thus, when the nation obeyed the Law and was righteous, they could expect God’s blessing and bounty.
f. This is the essence of the proverb.
5. This principle is found in many Old Testament passages.
a. Ps. 34:10 – they that seek the Lord shall not want.
b. Context: God’s constant care for His people.
• vs. 6 – In trouble, David cried and God delivered.
• Vs. 7 – The Angel of the Lord (and His hosts) encamp around those who fear God… for our good. Protected!
• This care is not for everyone:
‣‣ For those who bless God continually (vs.1)
‣‣ For those who boast in the Lord (vs.2)
‣‣ For those who magnify the Lord (vs.3)
‣‣ For those who seek the Lord (vs. 4)
‣‣ For those who cry to the Lord (vs. 6)
‣‣ For those who fear the Lord (vs. 7)
‣‣ For those who taste and see for themselves! (vs. 8)
‣‣ For those who fear the Lord (vs.9)
c. Vs. 10 – With that as a background David says, “They that seek the Lord shall not want (lack) any good thing.
• If God is your all in all—then you will not lack… you will taste and be satisfied…
• Ps. 23:1 – The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want (lack).
‣‣ Those who want to travel their own route don’t have this promise.
‣‣ Those who don’t want to follow the Good Shepherd may not make to the green pastures and experience fulfillment…
• Ps. 84:11 – no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly.
‣‣ Sometimes we complain and think God is withholding good from us when we don’t eat shrimp and lobster and only have herbs.
‣‣ But having shrimp and lobster every day may not be best for us.
‣‣ We might miss out on the joy of the Lord that is ours as we sit contentedly around a table of herbs… with love!
‣‣ If all we have is a table of herbs… just remember, God may be withholding many things from us—but no GOOD thing… He withholds nothing that is good for our soul… for our spiritual lives.
» Daniel and his friends ate herbs… and it didn’t do them any harm. They appeared “fairer and fatter in flesh” than those who ate at the king’s table.
» They profited from it!
» What most would look upon as a meagerly meal—did them GOOD!
» Families who go through times of trial and dry periods financially often discover that it was the very BEST thing for them spiritually!
» It is not always the case, but often is: prosperity in the world tends to cause us to forget the Lord…
» Poverty often causes us to focus more clearly on the Lord… to seek Him… as we see our need for His care moment by moment.
‣‣ Even for folks in the world, this principle is true… and has often been proven.
» Think of the many wealthy families in California who lost their homes in the recent fires… all their earthly goods gone up in smoke.
» On TV we probably all saw pictures of families weeping over their loss… and yet thankful that they still had each other… the parents and kids made it away safely…
» In fact, the removal of all earthly and material things enabled them to see a little more clearly that which was far MORE important… life and loved ones!
» Luke 12:15 – “a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.”
» Sometimes it takes losing one’s possessions to make us to see how precious is LIFE itself… and our family and friends.
» The unsaved can learn this lesson on that level.
4. But how much GREATER should be the lesson to the believer!
a. God may chose to reduce us to a table of herbs…
b. But we can still have LOVE around that table… a poor economy can’t take that away from us!
c. And we are still blessed with ALL spiritual blessings in heavenly places.
d. Sometimes it takes loosing our earthly blessings for us to appreciate how richly blessed we are spiritually!
e. For the believer in Christ, God hasn’t promised a stalled ox every meal. But He does provide for the complete satisfaction of the soul!
f. Even if we find ourselves reduced to a table of herbs for a season in life… taste and see that the LORD is good… HE is the One who truly satisfies our soul…
But the belly of the wicked shall want.
1. The curse of Deut. 28 would be upon the wicked… those who disobeyed God’s Law.
a. Their baskets would not overflow with bounty.
b. Their crops, fields, and cattle would be cursed.
c. They could expect famines and hunger if they disobeyed.
d. The belly of the wicked shall WANT (lack).
2. Their belly shall want…
a. They will not experience satisfaction…
b. Their desires will be insatiable…
c. In fact, there is nothing in all the world that could really satisfy the inner cravings of man… apart from God Himself…. And the wicked don’t want the Lord.
d. Thus, they shall suffer want… lack…
e. Their belly won’t be satisfied with food…
f. Their souls won’t be satisfied either…
3. This is a picture of the awful future condition of those wicked men in the Lake of Fire: they will desire to be satisfied, but will not… they will burn in those unfulfilled desires…
a. Cf. Luke 16:24-26 – the wicked rich man in Hades… longing for the satisfaction of a drink of water—but cannot be satisfied.
b. In whose shoes would YOU rather be? (Luke 16:19-23)
i. The rich man who fared sumptuously every day and ended up in Hades…
ii. Or the poor man that ate of the crumbs that fell from his table… yet who would soon be transported to Paradise… into Abraham’s bosom… into the presence of the Lord… and ultimately into the heavenly city forever?
4. The main point of the second half of this proverb is that there is NO SATISFACTION for the wicked… in this life or in the life to come.
5. A spiritual application: the Christian who may have precious little in the world… but who feasts upon Christ… will find TRUE satisfaction of his soul…
a. While the unbeliever who prospers in the world… with all of his millions… finds that his belly (inner man) goes hungry… unfulfilled… discontent… unhappy… without any true satisfaction.