Proverbs 10:4 (Mini Sermon)


4. Pro 10:4 – "He becometh poor that dealeth with a slack hand: but the hand of the diligent maketh rich." A. He becometh poor that dealeth with a slack hand: i. The Bible gives a number of ways to become poor, such as: a. Refusing instruction (Pro 13:18). b. Following the advice or example of stupid people (Pro 28:19). c. Having a lack of judgment (Pro 13:23). d. Loving pleasure and having expensive taste (Pro 21:17). e. Going into debt (Pro 22:7). f. Hasting to be rich (Pro 28:22). g. Being cheap and stingy (Pro 11:24). ii. Pro 10:4 is the first usage of the word poor in the book of Proverbs, and if there is any truth to the so-called "law of first mention," the primary cause of poverty is laziness. a. Poor adj. – I. 1. a. Having few, or no, material possessions; wanting means to procure the comforts, or the necessaries, of life; needy, indigent, destitute; spec. (esp. in legal use) so destitute as to be dependent upon gifts or allowances for subsistence. In common use expressing various degrees, from absolute want to straitened circumstances or limited means relatively to station, as ‘a poor gentleman’, ‘a poor professional man, clergyman, scholar, clerk’, etc. The opposite of rich, or wealthy. b. Deal v. – II. To take part in, have to do with, occupy oneself, do business, act. 13. a. To carry on commercial transactions; to do business, trade, traffic (with a person, in an article). 14. To have to do with (a thing) in any way; to busy or occupy oneself, to concern oneself with. c. Slack adj. – I. 1. a. Of persons: Lacking in energy or diligence; inclined to be lazy or idle; remiss, careless; negligent or lax in regard to one's duties. iii. He that deals with a slack hand is one who is lazy, careless, negligent, and lax in his business and whatever he occupies himself with. a. Such a man is a slacker. b. He lacks energy and diligence and works only half-heartedly. c. He mopes around and does everything slowly. iv. Such a lazy man will become poor and will have few or no material possessions, will lack the means to procure the comforts and necessities of life, and will depend on others to take care of him. a. His poverty will come unexpectedly and forcefully (Pro 6:6-11). b. Such a man will destroy himself (Pro 10:15). v. Lazy people love to sleep which will bring them to poverty (Pro 20:13; Pro 23:21; Pro 24:30-34; Pro 26:14). vi. Lazy people will not work during difficult conditions and will therefore be poor (Pro 20:4). a. Sluggard n. – A. n. a. One who is naturally or habitually slow, lazy, or idle; one who is disinclined for work or exertion of any kind; a slothful or indolent person. b. When a lazy man does work, he does so very slowly. vii. Lazy people waste food and material and will therefore become and remain poor (Pro 12:27; Pro 18:9). a. Slothful adj. - 1. Of persons, etc.: Full of sloth; indisposed to exertion; inactive, indolent, lazy, sluggish. b. Sloth n. - 1. Physical or mental inactivity; disinclination to action, exertion, or labour; sluggishness, idleness, indolence, laziness. viii. Lazy people refuse to work (Pro 21:25). a. Those who will not work shall not eat (2Th 3:10). b. Let them starve! c. Starvation is a great incentive to work (Pro 13:4; Pro 19:15). ix. Lazy people always have an excuse for their laziness (Pro 22:13; Pro 26:13) and always justify their slothfulness (Pro 26:16). B. but the hand of the diligent maketh rich. i. This second clause is connected to the first clause by the word but which is a contrasting conjunction. ii. Whereas a lazy man will become poor, a diligent man will make himself rich. a. Diligent adj. – 1. Of persons: ‘Constant in application, persevering in endeavour, assiduous’, industrious; ‘not idle, not negligent, not lazy.’ b. Assiduous adj. - 1. Of persons or agents: Constant in application to the business in hand, persevering, sedulous, unwearyingly diligent. c. Industrious adj. - 1. Characterized by or showing intelligent or skilful work; skilful, able, clever, ingenious. 2. Characterized by or showing application, endeavour, or effort; painstaking, zealous, attentive, careful. d. Rich adj. – 1. a. Of persons: Powerful, mighty, exalted, noble, great. Obs. 2. a. Having large possessions or abundant means; wealthy, opulent. e. A man who is works at whatever he does with constancy, persevering in his endeavors painstakingly, zealously, attentively, and carefully will be a wealthy man of abundant means if he is humble and fears God (Pro 22:4) and God blesses his efforts (Pro 10:22). f. The thoughts of the diligent tend only to plenteousness (Pro 21:5). g. He who labors will increase (Pro 13:11; Pro 14:23). iii. Christians should be diligent workers at whatever they do. a. "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might…" (Ecc 9:10). b. Christians should do whatever they do as if they were doing it for Jesus Christ (Eph 6:7; Col 3:23-24). c. Christians especially should be not slothful in business but fervent in spirit (Rom 12:11). (i) Fervent adj. – 1. Hot, burning, glowing, boiling. 2. Of persons, their passions, dispositions, or actions: Ardent, intensely earnest. (ii) Christians should be the hardest working people around. (iii) A lazy Christian is an oxymoron. d. Those who work diligently will not be poor.
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