Proverbs 30: King James Bible
4 Things the Earth Cannot Bear – Daily Devotion of Proverbs chapter thirty, Verses 21-23
21 For three things the earth is disquieted, and for four which it cannot bear: 22 For a servant when he reigneth; and a fool when he is filled with meat; 23 For an odious woman when she is married; and an handmaid that is heir to her mistress.
Daily Inspiration from These Verses – 4 Things the Earth Cannot Bear
Seems like Agur is being a bit of an alarmist in these 3 verses; right? All of the above have happened before, many times over – we’re still here. So what’s he going on about?
These things the earth cannot bear are representative of all levels of unrest. We can make that conclusion by understanding:
- All four things shouldn’t be
- All four are things point to something wrong
- All four point to one exploiting another’s suffering
Let’s break it down and see what the Lord is going to reveal to us.
A Servant gaining Rule
In a monarchy, a servant gaining rule happens when a king is left childless. A prince’s death in battle for example. Or perhaps falling ill and succumbing to the sickness. Or even perhaps a barren queen.
Perhaps early into his rule, the king was the one slain in battle before he had a chance to rear a son? No matter how you slice it, there is no positive reason for a servant to have gained rule over the son of a king- at least from a kings point of view.
When a prince has been removed, someone will eventually have to come and take his place.
Fool filled with Meat
When a ruler is a fool, they are harsh toward their subjects, and apathetic toward their concerns. The harshness comes with their foolishness, and their apathy comes with their full bellies. The problems of the people are not his problem.
When a fool is filled with meat, he is contented. There’s no longer any reward for not being a fool.
Agur prayed earlier in the chapter that he is give neither riches or poverty, but that which is convenient for him.
Not to be poor and led to steal and take the name of the Lord in vain. Not to be rich lest he be full and deny the Lord, even forgetting about him. See the connection?
Being full does lead to denying the Lord, because there’s no hunger to urge us forward with him. But a fool being full is worse. You could even say that a fool who already doesn’t have the Lord, has far less of a chance having his eyes opened to him after becoming full.
When people become so filled with worldliness and sinful ways, All of the evidence of God’s reality in the world will not penetrate through the paradigm of a fool. Only through direct intervention of the Lord can a person like this have their eyes opened and be saved.
A Married Odious Woman
To understand what is being implied by the married odious woman, we’ll need to give it s bit of thought.
She’s married, that’s clear. Who would marry an odious woman? Biblically speaking, Strong’s tells us being odious means to be: a hater of God, persons, nations, or wisdom. What a catch!
Why would anyone marry such a person? I don’t think anyone would.
However, people change over time. Or, the odious woman never revealed this nature of herself to her betrothed.
Either way, now the guy’s stuck in a marriage with such a woman. These days, few people would take issue with divorcing themselves from a person that can be this nasty. But there was a time where marriage was for keeps, and once the knot was tied, that’s it for life.
There were only a few different good reasons that a divorce was considered okay to do. The spouse being a miserable pain in the neck wasn’t one of them, nor was being odious.
Handmaid Heir to her Mistress
There are several ways a handmaid being heir to her mistress can be viewed as a bad thing. Unless of course you’re the handmaid.
One way would be through inheritance, where the mistress thought so much of her handmaid, that she left her all that she had. As I said, sounds great for the handmaid, but not necessarily so good for everyone else around her.
There could have been an affair between the husband and the handmaid, influencing the marriage to be destroyed, and knocking her out of the way. Or even the handmaid could cause the death of the mistress…
The imagination can run wild trying to figure out how this can happen. None of which bode well for the mistress.
Some speculate that this is the start of a man being married to the odious woman. Where the handmaid takes the place of her mistress, and only afterward reveals her true nature.
No matter how it happened, one thing is clear… It is the mistress who suffers the most in every scenario. She is either dead or otherwise removed.
This verse is a prophetic utterance, given to Agur by way of the Holy Ghost. A bold statement I know, but here’s how I get there…
For a short time, this character will be in charge over all the earth. He has no royalty in his blood spiritually speaking. He is neither God Almighty, nor is he his Son.
Until now, Satan has been playing by the rules, and taking only the liberties that he is allowed to take. There will be a time coming soon, where he’s going to go off the rails, and throw his seed into position.
Jesus having been removed in a physical sense 2000 years ago, has left cause an Anti-Christ figure waiting in the wings for the time appointed. Revelation gives us that period of time, and records the actions that this figure will take against the kingdom of he Lord.
These will be the days of the servant when he reigneth.
A Godless Generation
The fool says in his heart there is no God. During the last days, godlessness will run rampant. Morality will be changed to immorality, good will be seen as evil, and evil will be traded as good.
Persecution will abound, and these people of the world will remain apathetic at large. Some will aid those who are being persecuted, but at their own peril.
The fool full of meat will take no care for those in need or the persecuted. He’ll only do what is sanctioned by the world governing system, for fear of losing what he has.
The end times Israelites are being referred to here, because despite the Jewish nation as a whole having at first rejected their Messiah, how harsh they were toward the early church, and how far certain sects of Jews have strayed from the Torah, they’ve become as the odious woman, being married to the Lord.
The Lord has promises to keep, and for his own name’s sake will he keep them. Not because the people are so holy, but because he is holy.
The Jews will err right up until the end, but not all. There will be 144,000 of them at least, who won’t fall for Satan’s tricks, nor will they be led away in their sin.
But the rest will have no problem taking their part in the world, and behaving in a manner that grieves the Father. This will continue right up until the son of perdition steps right up into the Temple, and declares himself God. Only then will their eyes be opened, but they’ll suffer greatly for it.
Jesus made it perfectly clear, that we should be concentrating on serving others, just as he himself took the position of a servant. Not only to God, but to man in the name of God.
We are in the world, but not of the world. There will be a time that we will rule and reign with Christ.
The mistress is the current sinful world consisting of all the different levels of servitude it requires for us to pass through it. Every one of us at one time or another, was under servitude to the flesh, sin, the world, and every ounce of wickedness behind the scenes.
But we have crucified all of that in Christ Jesus, tossing aside all of the worldliness and the appetites of the flesh. Instead of the world, we’ve put on Christ Jesus.
This is a terror to the wicked, and from a worldly point of view, not a good thing. All of creation has been groaning for for the coming of the Lord along with his Saints.
According to the Word of God, we are going to come back as Kings and Priests. We will be under the authority of the Lord, but over the authority of the world, in which we were once in servitude.
We have been made heir over our first mistress – the world.
Related New Testament Scripture
Revelation 7: King James Bible
3 Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. 4 And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.
Revelation 13: King James Bible
1 And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. 2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
3 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. 4 And they worshiped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshiped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?
5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. 8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
9 If any man have an ear, let him hear.
Thank you for the wonders of your Word, and for every bit of knowledge, wisdom and insight we can extract from it. It is every bit relevant as its ever been, and we thank you and love you for it. Help us to become the servants that you’ve willed for us to become, and to make our impact in this world while there is still a space available to do so. Thank you for always being there for us Father, in all things may your will be done as it is in Heaven. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ we pray.
Wile we head toward the time of the things the earth cannot bear, where do you stand, and where will you stand?
- Daily Inspiration from Proverbs 19 P. 263 – Delight for a Fool
- Daily Inspiration from Proverbs 28 P. 441 – What Kind of People
- Daily Inspiration from Proverbs 29 P. 453 – Righteous in Authority
- Daily Inspiration from Proverbs 5 P.43 – The Strange Woman
- Daily Inspiration from Proverbs 18 P. 244 – Deep Waters