Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that heareth the commandment shall be rewarded (Proverbs 13:13).
In many things we offend all, but we are not all despisers of the word of God. Good men have reason to lament their manifold breaches of the commandment, and yet they have a sincere love and esteem for it, earnestly desiring that their ways might be directed to keep God’s statutes.
It was an evidence that Esau despised his birthright, when he sold it for a morsel of meat; and men discover a contempt for the word, when they disregard its precepts, to gain some advantage, and some indulgence for the flesh. A tree may be sound at the heart, and yet have its branches broken by a strong blast; but a tree must be rotten which is broken with a gale of wind. In like manner, a strong temptation may prevail against a sound and lively Christian; but he is not sound in God’s statutes, who falls before every temptation.
He that pours contempt upon a single word of God, however inconsiderable it may appear to him, shall be destroyed by the vengeance of God; for every jot and tittle of the law is enforced by the awful authority of the Lawgiver. He that despises his authority despises not man but God, and shall have his place among those to whom it will be said, “Behold, ye despisers, and wonder, and perish.” On the contrary, he who reverences the authority of the Lord, and earnestly endeavours, by the grace of God, to govern his steps, not by the fashion of the world, or with a view to serve himself, but according to the will of God, shall be rewarded with the gracious acceptance of God, and shall experience all that favour which God through Christ vouchsafes to such as fear his name.
Excerpt from “Exposition of the Book of Proverbs” by George Lawson.