Counterfeit Community



Key Bible Verse: Don’t fool yourselves. Bad friends will destroy you. (1 Corinthians 15:33, CEV)

Dig Deeper: Proverbs 1:8–19

The Bible does not describe how life ought to be. It matches how life is. The wisdom of Proverbs is reality-based counsel as we live in this fantasy-world of human invention.

In [today’s Dig Deeper] we hear two voices—the wisdom that is reality-based and the folly that is in denial. Wisdom is speaking here as a loving father. Fools are speaking here too. Their message is a kind of reverse-evangelism. They are inviting us into their dead-end lives. But God is calling us into the beauty of real human relationships. Here is what God is saying in this passage: Refuse violence. It is tempting, but it will destroy you. Wisdom will beautify you.

Have you ever felt envy and resentment deep inside? It is where violence begins. When rage pops up to the surface, observe yourself carefully. You will probably recruit others to your cause. Sin tends to recruit. Look at verse 14: “Throw in your lot among us; we will all have one purse” (ESV). A cause, even a negative cause, provides a group to belong to. It is one way we nurse our grudges, and it feels good. But whenever we gather around grievance rather than Jesus, that is counterfeit community and it cannot succeed long-term.

– Ray Ortlund Jr. in Proverbs

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