A Study of Proverbs 20:24
“Man’s goings are of the Lord: how can a man then understand his own way?”
Some may attempt to use this Scripture to justify oneself for his wickedness, wrong doings, etc. Or one may use this text as a shield or cloke for his faughts, sins, etc. But a quickened child of God understands the admonition, “As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.” (1 Peter 2:16)
“And not rather, (as we be slanderously reported, and as some affirm that we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? Whose damnation is just.”
We need the Spirit of God to enable us to rightly divide the word of truth.
Why was this text written?
I believe that satan tempts the children of God in order to harden their hearts and they attempt to use grace, predestination, etc. as a shield for their sins.
“Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth He any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”
“Man’s goings are of the Lord.”
I believe this means that God has determined, purposed and decreed our travails, pathway, course and the direction of our life. Therefore we will have all the fiery trials, tribulations, heartaches, troubles, stumbling blocks in our pathway that God Almighty has purposed that we will have. This Scripture is true to His children:
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”
For example, our tribulations are not pleasant to the flesh, but the Lord uses them as a means to teach us patience. “but we glory in tribulations also; knowing that tribulation worketh patience.”
The Lord also uses the trials of our faith as a means to teach us patience.
“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into diver’s temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.”
“…How can a man then understand his own way?”
Since we cannot see nor understand what lies in our path, we have to travel by faith and not by sight.
Is not it a great blessing that the Lord gives us that faith?
“By faith, Abraham when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.’
I believe the Lord gives us the desire to keep pressing on doing that which is right and acceptable in the sight of the Lord. Even though we meet with many trials, afflictions, troubles as we travel upon this earth and at times we may be brought down so low that we do not know which way to go or which way to turn; somehow or another, the Lord brings us out of them.
“Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all.”
“For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again, but the wicked shall fall into mischief.”
The comfort of the text is that the Lord has determined our course or path-way and we will travel all the dangerous paths that the Lord has decreed, determined, or purposed. One may not feel the presence of the Lord but this great God is tenderly watching over all and He cares for you.
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”
By Woodrow Hudson