A Short Study of Proverbs 21:1

“The king‘s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.”
(Proverbs 21:1)

Every child of God knows that God is control of all things and that He works all things after the counsel of His own will and causes all things to work together for good to the called according to His purpose. (Ephesians 1:11, Romans 8:28) To know these things is to also know that every man and woman’s heart including the (so called) most powerful of men (the king) is in the hand of the LORD God Almighty! But have you ever noticed what the king and every other man and woman’s heart is compared to? It is compared to water. (As the rivers of water) God turns it whithersoever (however, whenever, to whomever) His good will is pleased to do so. The king’s heart and ours are as the rivers of water.

What are some things about water that we all understand? First it is unstable. It always flows downward and follows the path of least resistance. What a picture that is of our hearts. Our hearts being deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, always gravitate downwards taking the least path of resistance in sin and wickedness. That is the nature of our hearts unless God Almighty turns it! Water is inanimate, which simply means it does not have a will or a choice in anything. So it is with our dead cold hearts, unless God make it alive and make it willing to serve Him in the day of His power.

Water takes the shape of its environment. You pour it into a round bowl it takes the shape of round. You pour it into a square container and it becomes the square shape of the container. It is the same with a deceitful wicked heart. It conforms to the world and the things of it, always gravitating downward, always remaining unstable. The only hope the king’s heart has is the only hope that you and I have. And that is God Almighty turns it according to His own Sovereign will.

The Israelites in Joshua chapter three were crossing over the river Jordan into God’s land of promise. The priests carrying the “ark of the covenant” (a picture of Christ), stepped in the water and immediately the current and flow of the river Jordan not only stopped but turned back the other way. Who can change the river’s mighty flow in the midst of flood season? The same One that can turn the king’s heart and direct it as He pleases, GOD ALMIGHTY. Oh may God be pleased to change the direction and flow of our wicked hearts to serve, love, worship Him in whom we owe a debt that we can never pay.

D. Eddmenson

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