Proverbs 11:1-4

 1 The LORD detests dishonest scales,
   but accurate weights find favor with him.

 2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace,
   but with humility comes wisdom.

 3 The integrity of the upright guides them,
   but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.

 4 Wealth is worthless in the day of wrath,
   but righteousness delivers from death.

Honest Business and Good Math

Mathematics and honesty are closely linked.  Without accurate measurement there is no law.  God does not only have us measure, but he has us measure accurately.  The revelation of and use of mathematics allows us to have justice.  God reveals his character in revealing mathematics.   The Israelite traders revealed their character in their use of dishonest scales.  In fact, archaeology has shown that ancient traders had two sets of weights, one set for buying and the other for trading.  It is obvious that such traders loved wealth above justice.  However, they neither knew nor reflected God’s character.  Such duplicity is destructive.  It eats out a person’s soul and leaves them self-obsessed and alone.  We say of such people, “They would sell their own grandmother.”  The path to such self-destruction starts with intentionally fuzzy math.  When a person measures a piece of cloth they sell half a yard too short, or they slyly add half a pound of rice to their purchase they may seem wise because they are accumulating wealth and possessions.  However, all their bad math will be measured against them on the day of God’s wrath. 

Questions

  1. What does God detest?
  2. Why would good character be shown through accurate measurement?
  3. How are measurement and righteousness linked?
  4. What do you have to measure in a week (e.g. your time, money, weights, etc.)?
  5. How are people dishonest today in their measurement of time, money, weight, etc.?
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About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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