Pro 19:10 Delight is not seemly for a fool; much less for a servant to have rule over princes.First, I want to thank Tonya for a great week of study last week! She led us in some very thoughtful discussions, and I know I learned a lot -- hope you did, too!
Pro 19:11 The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.
Pro 19:12 The king's wrath is as the roaring of a lion; but his favor is as dew upon the grass.
Verses 10 and 11 above are concepts that we've covered before -- how incongruous it is for a servant to rule over princes; how a fool lacks wisdom to know that his delightful blessings are from the hand of God; and how if we are slow to anger and forget a transgression against us, it is to our credit.
Verse 11 is where I would like to linger today. At first, I looked at this in the light of some of the kings that we read about in the Old Testament. The kings of old were true despots, and ruled with absolute power. If you look in an online dictionary, the second definition listed for "despot" is a "tyrannical" ruler.
Several kings in the Bible were compared to lions; lions are ferocious when hungry, and that is the characteristic that is being noted here. Let's look at Jeremiah 50:17.
Israel is a scattered sheep; the lions have driven him away: first the king of Assyria hath devoured him; and last Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon hath broken his bones.The king of Assyria, and the king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, are both called lions by the prophet. Their rage was dreadful, and the results were written in the history of Israel. In the New Testament we still have accounts of despotic rulers --- Paul notes that he was delivered out of the hands of one, in II Timothy 4:7:
Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.Of course, the opposite of the wrath of the king was his favor, and we can imagine what relief a person might feel, if the king were to smile upon him, instead of raging at him!
The reason for my interest in studying this verse was that Jesus, our Savior, is called the Lion of Judah. He is said to cry out with a loud voice, as when a lion roars, in several verses in Revelation. His wrath will be terrible to sinners, and even those who have been earthly kings and rulers . . . but His favor will truly be as dew upon the grass.
What does dew accomplish for the grass it falls upon? Well, even when there has been no rain, the dew can cause the grass to grow and flourish. The favor and good will of our Father King will water our souls, cause joy and cheerfulness, and delight us as only His love can:
Isa 58:11 And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.