Monday, March 15, 2010

Them Changes

This title, Them Changes, is inspired by a song by Jimmy Hendrix and Buddy Miles, but this has nothing to do with the song. Another great song about change is Change, by Blind Mellon, also not real relevant.

Proverbs 24: 21-22, New American Standard Bible

“My son, fear the Lord and the king; do not associate with those who are given to change, for their calamity will rise suddenly, and who knows the ruin that comes from both of them?”

Proverbs 24: 21-22, The Message

Fear God, dear child—respect your leaders; don’t be defiant or mutinous. Without warning your life can turn upside down, and who knows how or when it might happen?

A German Proverb: “To change and to change for the better are two different things.”

Question: “How many church members does it take to change a light bulb?”

Answer: “Change! Who said anything about change?!”

Change = to make or become different

People either love change, or they hate it. I have rarely seen someone indifferent about change unless they were completely removed or divested from the situation or issue. Change can be necessary and it can be difficult. Either way, change is inevitable. Change can be good, but change is not always good. Some people change for the sake of change, and this is not good. Some change because changes have to be made. They see a need and decisively make adjustments to meet that need. Some people change through a well thought out reasoning and plan, for a specific purpose. These people think and act decisively with intentionality.

Some people change because they are not grounded in their goals and they are unsure of the direction in which they are headed. They are like paper in the wind. These people blow wherever the latest wind takes them. These people are not stable and grounded. Change is too easy for them and does not possess substance. This kind of change is flippant and does not revere God or others. This level of rapid change can be traumatic and does not respect the system on which the change is inflicted. It is this kind of change that is referred to in Proverbs 24:21: “do not associate with those who are given to change.” The idea of change here refers to meddling where you are not supposed to be, or being a restless person, or a busy body. This change is negative and is damaging to everyone involved with it. This type of change is divisive and misuses and abuses people, authority, resources, and leadership.

The Hebrew word used for change that is used in Proverbs 24:21, 8138 שָׁנָה [shanah /shaw·naw/], can mean to repeat, or do again to change, to alter to change, to be repeated to change, or to disguise oneself (Strong). The images I get are “lipstick on a pig,” chameleons, “doing what you have always done and expecting different results,” otherwise known as insanity, and finally, being uprooted. One of the things that you should not do when planting a plant or tree is shocking its root system. If you move a plant too much from one pot to the other or from one place in your yard to the other it will not grow or growth will be stunted. The root system goes into shock and this is very unhealthy for the plant. The plant might even die.

In Proverbs 1:7, the writer of Proverbs states that the Fear of God is the beginning of all understanding. The author of Ecclesiastes says this about the wise man in chapter eight verse one, “Who is like the wise man? Who knows the explanation of things? Wisdom brightens a man’s face and changes its hard appearance.” Wisdom leads to the change that we should be seeking. When we are wise in our knowledge of and fear of the Lord our affect is changed, and we are changed. God does not leave us with the same look on our face. God does not leave us hardened. When we fear the Lord and seek Him, then we begin to truly understand and real change and transformation can take place in us and around us. As 2 Corinthians 3:18 says, “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

Seeking true change in Him,



The Holy Bible : King James Version. electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version. Bellingham WA : Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1995, S. 2 Co 3:18

Merriam-Webster, Inc: Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Thesaurus. Springfield, Mass. : Merriam-Webster, 1996, c1988

New American Standard Bible : 1995 Update. LaHabra, CA : The Lockman Foundation, 1995, S. Pr 24:21-22

Peterson, Eugene H.: The Message : The Bible in Contemporary Language. Colorado Springs, Colo. : NavPress, 2002, S. Pr 24:21-22

Strong, James: The Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible : Showing Every Word of the Text of the Common English Version of the Canonical Books, and Every Occurrence of Each Word in Regular Order. electronic ed. Ontario : Woodside Bible Fellowship., 1996, S. H8138

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