Are You a Bargain Hunter?

bargain-of-the-week.JPGAre you one of those people who simply can’t pass up a good deal? Can you spot a value when you see it? My wife is such a person. She’s a lot like her father that way. I used to jokingly say that he could step out on the front porch and smell a bargain within 50 miles. If you are not gifted in this way, I’m sure you know someone who is. The Bible even has something to say on this topic. Well, it reports that there is an item that is of such great value that no one should pass it up. In the wise counsel of Proverbs 23:23 we read: “Buy the truth and do not sell it; get wisdom, discipline and understanding.”

The most cost effective venture we can undertake is to buy the truth! Notice the implication? In order to possess the truth of which Solomon writes, we must be willing to give something in exchange for it. There are many examples that make this clear. Consider the following:

— Jesus said that we must abide in or continue in His word in order to know the truth, which makes us free. (See: John 8:31-32)

— As recorded in 2 Timothy 2:15, the Apostle Paul once wrote the following to Timothy: “Do your best (give diligence, NASB) to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

— There is much to say about this idea in the Psalms, as well. In Psalm 119:11 we read, “I have hidden (treasured, NASB) your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.

What do we conclude? Well, it seems clear to me that a means by which we buy the truth is through giving of our time and putting forth diligent effort in study, meditation and memorization of the Word of God.

Not only are we to buy the truth, we are also admonished: “Do not sell it!” There are priceless possessions, things that no amount of money can buy. The truth of God’s Word written on our hearts is a priceless possession which we are to treasure. We are not to sell out cheaply by following the world’s counsel rather than God’s. This idea is brought to light in Psalm 1:1-2, 1Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. 2But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.” Moreover, we must not exchange the purity of God’s truth for the mendacious messages of the evil one. (See: John 8:44-45 and Romans 1:25.)

 

We must be mindful of the fact that the things of this world will perish, but the truth of God’s Word will abide forever (cf. 1 Peter 1:25). Adding nuggets of the truth of God’s Word to the storehouse of our hearts, then, is to grow one of the greatest treasure troves known to humanity. Nothing of this world is of sufficient worth that it might be given in exchange for it, either.

 

By following this inspired counsel—putting forth the time and effort to inscribe God’s truth in our hearts and diligently hanging on to it—there is great reward! In it we find the keys to wisdom, discipline and understanding. Increasing in these will enable us to experience first hand the value of truth. God’s wisdom will guide us in the paths of righteousness. God’s discipline will correct our course should be stray. Indeed, an understanding of God’s ways will keep us on track throughout all of life.

 

So, buy the truth, by all appropriate means! But, do not sell it, no matter what!

 

© Bill Williams

September 5, 2006

About a fellow sojourner

a sojourner in life, trying to follow in the steps of Jesus.
This entry was posted in Bible Study, Blogroll, Christian Living, Following Jesus, Life. Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Are You a Bargain Hunter?

  1. Donna says:

    I am one of those people who always buy something right before it goes on sale….

    But thanks for your thoughts on truth.

  2. Bill says:

    Yes, Donna. I know exactly what you mean. We have had the unfortunate experience of buying high and selling far too many times. I just keep learning and learning and learning (maybe not) that lesson!
    Blessings,
    -bill

  3. Mag says:

    I’m the yard sale, Goodwill queen. I can’t convince myself there is a better way than buying things crazy people throw away from something bigger and better. And the things feel “loved” when I buy them. When my kids spill stuff on me…it’s like, “Oh well, a $3.00 put to great use.” No remorse. I do have TOO MUCH as a result, but anyway…

    I’d like to print this to help close out Week one sounding for my Christian HS Finance class with your permission? I’ll wait your reply.

  4. Kathy says:

    Bill – why does this entry remind me of my uneasiness with Fox News’ Steve Centani and his denoucement of his belief, swearing allegance to the Koran with the hopes of saving his life?

    I pray my faith would always be strong enough to sustain me under similar circumstances – holding me steadfastly to my LORD and His Word – that I’d never be tempted to denounce that love and belief in exchange for a few extra years on this fading earth. I say I’d never denounce my belief, but I’ve never been in a life-threatening situation to test that faith, so who knows. I do know, however, that to exchange this life for the one in God’s presence is a very poor rate of exchange – it would be the ultimate shortchange.

  5. ksreyes says:

    Hi Bill,

    For some reason this post also reminds me of the scripture that says “Do not cast your pearls before swine….” Sometimes the heart is so hardened, we are just beating ourselves against brick walls to try and shine God’s light inside……A great post to read on the eve of our first ladies’ bible study meeting. This year’s topic: Ecclesiastes! I can’t wait. I’m sure I will have plenty to blog about in the weeks and months to come!

    peace+
    kiersten

  6. Bill says:

    Maggie,

    Yow are welcome to use this post in any way you deem appropriate, especially you think it will help you shape the lives of young people. I’m curious about the class you are teaching. Are you teaching this class at a Christian school? Or, is this a Sunday school class? I’d like to learn more about what you are doing.

    Grace and peace,
    -bill

  7. Bill says:

    Kathy,

    You set this in an interesting context. One which I really didn’t have in mind when I wrote it. What a contrast! With all of our comforts and “advantages” we sometimes wrestle with carving out a few minutes per day to study and pray in order to gain spiritual insights and understanding. Makes me wonder where my priorities are!

    Blessings to you,
    -bill

  8. Bill says:

    Kiersten,

    I’m looking forward to reading about your adventures in Ecclesiastes. I enjoy studying this book from time-to-time, but I think I’d struggle with a whole year of it. There are times when I’m reading it that I think of that old Hee Haw routine: Gloom, Despair and Agony on Me. Do you remember it?

    Hope the Son is shining brightly in your world today!

    Blessings,
    -bill

  9. Kathy says:

    Hey Bill 🙂

    Maybe a bit more on topic would be to mention that I’m so fruggle that I can garage sale shop without leaving my computer, thereby saving on gas. LOL

    There is a nationwide online group called Freecyle. I belong to our local group. You can get rid of stuff that is just a tad too good to go in the trash, yet not enough value to sell, and with the idea of keeping things out of the landfill, we offer them free, [no exchanges, no bartering] online. Those interested usually come to the offerer’s home to pick up the stuff. For instance, my speaker phone, DVD player came from freecycle.

    An outgrowth of that is our local online garage sale. I’ve seen everything from 5 clothespins to Broncos offered and bought on the site. I was able to sell an oversized lamp table there and later bought a lovely smaller version for just $5.00. Talk about frugal!! 🙂

  10. Cecil Walker says:

    One of the saddest things in church leadership is trying to minister to members who at one time “bought the Truth” and then sold it away for the lies of this world.
    Good post Bro.

  11. Greg England says:

    This is exactly why I don’t sell any of my guitars … just can’t get the value out of them. Seriously, though, “the truth” as presented in so many churches is nothing more than generations of tradition, opinion, and orthodoxy; therefore “truth” changes from one church or denomination to the next. TRUTH, being the Person of Jesus and personified in His ministry is worth everything this life offers!
    Good thoughts, Bill

  12. Bill says:

    My heart goes out to you, Cecil. Unfortunately, we all know far too many people who know the hearache of selling out cheaply. May God help us all to guard our hearts (where the treasure of truth is stored) with all diligence!

    May God bless you in your manifold service to the Lord!

    -bill

  13. Bill says:

    Yes! Yes!! Yes!!! Greg, I’m so glad you added this. I’ve been feeling like I needed to post an adendum: Remember, Jesus is the way, the TRUTH and the life! You took care of it though. Thanks!! -bill

  14. Angie says:

    Reminds me of how I’ve heard that bank tellers are trained to learn the look and texture of REAL currency… every detail of it, in order to spot a fake.

    I wanna know Him through and through, so I’ll be able to recognize anything that doesn’t look or sound like Him…

  15. Bill says:

    Yes, Angie! Your comment reminds me of one of my favorite songs/prayers:

    JESUS LET US COME TO KNOW YOU

    Jesus let us come to know you
    Let us see you face to face
    Touch us, hold us, use us, mold us
    Only let us live in you

    Jesus, draw us ever nearer
    Hold us in your loving arms
    Wrap us in your gentle presence
    When the end comes, bring us home

    © 1982 Mole End Music (admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing)

    Thanks sis!

    -bill

  16. Mag says:

    I’m mentoring, volunteering, tutoring, teaching a Senior Miss at the kid’s Christian school (very small community group using Abeka). I’m enjoying teaching So much! Content doesn’t get much better than Life Finance. So much wisdom you can add in.

  17. Pingback: Some Great Stuff « Magnanimity

  18. Dee Andrews says:

    I hadn’t heard about the CNN reporter’s actions. I don’t know what I would do, either, but think I would stand fast, looking forward to Glory. Like a Boy Scout, I try to be prepared.

    This post DOES fit right in with my Tuesday post about bargain shopping! This week has really been a long string of coincidences in our lovely Christian blogging community, I’ve got to say. Providential do you suppose? You, Patrick, some things I’ve posted and some of the rest of you – like Greg.

    Very interesting.

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