Though He scoffs at the scoffers, Yet He gives grace to the afflicted. Proverbs 3:34
How does God respond to those who scoff at Him? The first half of our proverb for today reveals that to us - then shares some very wonderful news with us about how the Lord responds to those who are afflicted.
God is a God of grace and mercy - but He is not happy with those who mock and scoff at Him and His Word. Here in Proverbs 3:34
we find a strong statement about how God reacts to the ones who are scoffing at Him. We read that God responds with scoffing toward them. The "scoffer" is one who mocks God. He derides the Lord and holds Him in utter contempt - even boasting against the Lord. What God promises to these who mock Him is mocking in return. The difference here is that the human who is insane enough to mock God, does nothing to God by His mocking. He is powerless to have any affect on God's glory or anything to do with God. On the other hand - God's mocking and utter contempt comes with an eternity of consequences - literally! The mocker who thinks himself so powerful has less effect than a flea has as it crashes into an aircraft carrier as it speeds through the ocean. So the one hurt by these actions is the mocker himself - whose mocking is only storing up wrath for himself when God ultimately comes to humble the arrogant.
The promise though is not just scoffing to the scoffer - but also grace to the afflicted. The word afflicted here is the Hebrew word "anaw" which has a much wider range than just the afflicted. It means one who is poor, oppressed, afflicted, and humble. This "afflicted one" is not proud, haughty, self-advancing, or self-assertive when it comes to standing before God. He is humble. He puts himself intentionally in a low and meek position. He does not view himself in comparison to men - either presently or in the past. He takes a good look at God and does the only wise thing a man can do - he chooses humility. One Hebrew commentary even suggests the idea of affliction here is that of self-affliction. He sees who he truly is in the sight of God - and chooses to humble himself in the dust before a God whose glory and majesty dwarfs him in a way that cannot be expressed in human language. Yet this humbling of himself is what makes him a candidate for God's grace. God looks at this humilty and desires to bless him. This is nothing more than the promise in James, "God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble." That is pretty much what the writer is saying to us here. May God see us remove ourselves from among the scoffers - and align ourselves with every haste to the ones who humble themselves and give God glory!
The curse of the LORD is on the house of the wicked, But He blesses the dwelling of the righteous. Proverbs 3:33
In order to represent God in a balanced Scriptural way, we need to see both the grace and mercy of God as well as His wrath and justice. When we turn too far toward one without the balance of the other we can make God either a tyrant - or an indulgent parent. He is neither.
Here we read of God - and see Him in balance. First we see that the curse of God is on the house of the wicked. The wicked are those who are enemies of God and His people. They do not want to learn righteousness, but choose instead to actively pursue wicked ways. At first we may be a little shocked by these words - that God has a curse for those who live this way - but the fact is that this is true. It is a proper representation of God, and one that we should be alert and aware of in life. Too many want to make God out to be an indulgent parent who winks at sin. God has never winked at sin. What was poured out on the Lord Jesus Christ is God's final statement about sin. He poured wrath and judgment out upon His Son, when He became sin. What God shows to the wicked is both patience and mercy. He is patient with them in that He does not bring judgment upon them immediately upon their first sin. But His mercy goes far beyond a "first sin," to the point where God is withholding His wrath on billions of sins every day. He does this because He loves us - and because He loves to show mercy. But that mercy will not last forever. There will be a day when God's mercy will end - and then the wicked will face a judgment unlike anything we can ever imagine. Though His judgment is awaiting the wicked - His lack of immediate action is not due to anything except His infinite mercies that are allowing the lost, the wicked to receive another day to hear the gospel and repent.
The righteous though - are blessed. Their dwelling place will know the blessing and goodness of God. What we may fail to see is that the only way we can be righteous in God's sight is to believe the gospel - to be made righteous by faith. But oh how the blessings are released upon us when we respond to the gospel and receive what God has to offer. First, He gives us the very righteousness of Christ as a gift - and then blessings flow freely to us. Ephesians reminds us of the richeness of these blessings in the entire first chapter. God has indeed blessed us with every spiritual blessing in Christ Jesus! What is even more wonderful is that this passage reminds us that these wonderful blessings are passed to our entire household or dwelling place when we receive them. There is a blessing in the home of the godly - just as there is a curse on the house of the wicked.
Let me close today's comments with a question. What are you bringing on your home with your choices spiritually? Are you a conduit of blessing because of your submission and obedience to God, or are you something much different? Does your family and friends rise up and call you blessed because of how God's grace is evident in you - and even evident to the point of blessing others around you? That is what the truly wise person brings to their family and friends. They bring blessing because of God's blessing in their lives. May God make us a wonderful blessing to those around us!
Do not envy a man of violence And do not choose any of his ways. For the devious are an abomination to the LORD; But He is intimate with the upright. Proverbs 3:31-32
Ours is a society that is enamored with violence. We glorify it daily in our entertainment mediums - movies, television, magazines, books, and newspapers. It is interesting that we also try to sit in judgment on cultures like Rome, saying that they were barbaric in their gladiator games and other forms of public violence. Yet, if we were to look at what we do and how we consume it - there is little difference in our two cultures.
God says not to envy a man of violence or to choose any of his ways. The word for violence is very telling in this passage. It is the word "hamas" in the Hebrew - and it means to do violence or wrong. The word implies not just violence - but also cruelty, damage, and injustice as well. We are to stay away from people who are like this - who are violent - and whose violence is manifested in being cruel, unjust, and in doing damage to that which belongs to others.
The reason some might "envy" this violent man is because of the gain that it brings him in the short term. Think about the people who in history have gained money, influence, and power because of their violence. Many of the world's most heinous dictators used violence to their advantage. But Scripture tells us not to choose ANY of the violent man's ways. This is because everything these men do is tainted by their violence. This is why I've included verse 32 with verse 31. There is another reason to reject the ways of the violent man - which is shown to us in verse 32.
The violent are also "devious." The word devious here is the Hebrew word "luz" which means to be crooked or perverse. God is telling us here that when a man is a violent man - he will also be a perverse or crooked man as well. The idea behind this word is that being crooked and perverse is what a person is trusting in - as a way of walking through life. This word is used in Scripture to describe those who are wicked, perverse, and who reject God. They reject His ways - things like righteousness and truth - and choose instead to twist the truth to their advantage.
When someone wants to trust devious and violent ways - they do not have a heart to seek God - or to learn from His Word. They do not want to walk with Him. That is why God says that these devious ones are an abomination to Him. This is because they utterly reject Him and His ways. We should also note the word, "for" that begins verse 32. This links what is said here to the previous verse. The devious are the violent ones - and the violent ones are those who function with a devious and God-rejecting mindset. They choose violence and deceit because they do not want to trust God with their plans and purposes. Since they do not have God's power at their disposal, they have to trust their own thinking (which is fatally flawed due to sin) and their own power.
The last thing said in this verse is that God is "intimate" with the upright. What a wonderful thought this is for us - that God is intimate with us when we walk in His ways and choose His paths. The word "intimate" here actually means intimate counsel - and has the idea of being brought into a kind of inner circle where God shares His wisdom with us. So God is promising us that if we reject the violence and deceit of this present world's ways - that God will bring us into the inner circle with Himself for the purpose of teaching us.
This particular proverb is one we should consider - especially when we consider the way our current society is so enamoured with violence. We see it in just about every form of entertainment we consume daily. When there is not violence in a movie or television show - it is almost completely ignored. We are inundated with violence - and the tendency is for this violence to more and more graphic in nature. This is happening at a time when we are watching a corresponding decline in our desire for intimacy with God. Is this just a coincidence - or - is it exactly what God is trying to get us to see in this proverb? The more we embrace violence - the more we will embrace deception and a rejection of God and His ways. The more we embrace violence - the less we will embrace God Himself - and with this we will also place a lesser value on the counsel of His Word. May God bring to us a return to Him and a corresponding turn from loving violence. Remember Jesus' name is the prince of peace - and His Word tells us, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God." (Matthew 5:9
Do not devise harm against your neighbor, While he lives securely beside you. Do not contend with a man without cause, If he has done you no harm. Proverbs 3:29-30
How are we to treat our neighbor? Here again we have a couple of verses in Proverbs that help us know how to love our neighbor as ourselves. This has to do with how we treat neighbors who are living next to us, around us - and who pose no threat to our lives. The reason for this instruction is to make sure that we truly do love our neighbor and treat them as we would have them treat us. When someone takes advantage of their neighbor - when that neighbor has done nothing to arouse suspicion or cause harm - there is a total breakdown of trust in a society. There should be a general safety that exists between neighbors that should make all of us not just feel safe - but actually be safe. When that general sense of a society governed by the golden rule is gone - that society suffers greatly.
We are told not to devise harm against our neighbor who lives securely along with us in our society. There should not be any kind of ill will toward our neighbor unless they have done us harm. Even then we should embrace forgiveness rather than bitterness in our dealings with one another. In commenting on this verse J. Vernon McGee had this great statement, "In relationship to your neighbor, don't do things that would be to your advantage and his disadvantage. And don't try to keep up with the Jones by undermining the Joneses."
Here is the crux of the wisdom that God is offering to us. When we truly love one another - and care for each other - we will not take advantage of one another nor seek to harm each other. This is the very core of how societies maintain a sense of well-being amongst the general population. The best government in any society is self-government. No human government can offer a sure protection to everyone in its borders. That would require a police force of millions - and even then you would have to answer tne question of whether you could trust the police. What is best for any society is self-government according to the Word of God. This is when the individual takes the responsiblity to govern their own heart according to a moral standard established by God. When this happens there is no need for a heavy police presence - because each person in the society is watching themselves first - to be sure that they are good citizens.
When a society degenerates - it always begins with a degeneration of its view of God and practice of His principles on a personal level. To the extent that we are no longer governed by ourselves and God's Word and Spirit - to that extent society will have to add rules and enforcement officers to try and rein in the wickedness of the human heart. As the society continues to reject God and His ways, that society will continue to degenerate in how they treat one another. Laws will eventually be downgraded to allow more and more ungodliness in the society - with the end being that good is called evil and evil is called good. With each devaluation of God's Law not only will the morals of that society slide, but the sense of safety and well-being will slide along with it.
When we first read these two verses they seemed almost too simplistic for us. Yet as we look at the true ramifications of a society with a high level of self-government versus one that has all but abandoned this concept, we suddenly realize the great wisdom of God in what is said here. This is how to have a peaceful, secure world. To the extent that we embrace this model - we will have the peace and sense of safety it will provide. But to the extend that we reject this - to that extent our society will lack safety, will lack peace, but worst of all it will lack among its people the nearness and blessing of God.
Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, When it is in your power to do it.
Do not say to your neighbor, "Go, and come back, And tomorrow I will give it,
" When you have it with you. Proverbs 3:27-28
You shall love your neighbor as yourself. These are the words that God has left us to help us define how we are to interact with our neighbors. To help us further there are also proverbs that instruct us how we are to handle specific situations involving our neighbors. These two verses in Proverbs chapter three are some of those verses that give us that instruction.
This proverb has to do with how we treat our neighbor when we owe him money - in short - this is about how we pay our debts. The phrase "from those to whom it is due" means to those who are its rightful owners. The word "those" is the Hebrew word "baal" which means a master or an owner. Some want to make this passage about taking care of the poor - and while there are many verses that instruct us to do just that - this is not one of them. It is about withholding good from the owner who is present. If this were not about repayment of debts - we might have an interesting time defining the "one to whom it is due."
When we legitimately owe someone money - we need to repay it. Since we have incurred the debt - they deserve to receive from us what we owe them. Most debts in our world are negotiated debts - so there is a payment that is due each month or week. It is our responsibility to give them the money on time. If our financial obligation is due - it is sinful for us to ask our creditor to wait till tomorrow to be paid. This is especially true if we have the money with us. This is what is means when we read that we have it is our power to do good toward them. The good is to be faithful to pay our debt in an acceptable amount of time.
We are told in verse 28 that it is a sinful thing to tell our neighbor that we will pay them tomorrow when we have the money with us today. Thus to wait out a creditor because we have something to gain - or because we may not want to part with our money today - is sin. If we have the money with us - we need to pay it to the person we owe immediately. The way we pay our bills is a testimony to our faith in the Lord. If we are constantly late with our bills and are not wise with our money - it is a very poor testimony to the Lord. To pay our debts wisely and regularly lets the world around us know that we manage our money well. The truth is that it is not "our money" anyway. It is money that God has entrusted us with for the sake of using it for His glory. When we handle our financies this way - we do Him honor and remind those around us that Christians are trustworthy, faithful people. When we do not - great shame is brought to God's name. May God always grant us to be the people who are the former - and who honey and magnify God with how we handle His money and pay our debts.
Do not be afraid of sudden fear Nor of the onslaught of the wicked when it comes; for the LORD will be your confidence And will keep your foot from being caught. Proverbs 3:25-26
Sudden fear, dread, terror that comes suddenly - all these are things that wisdom will protect us from in our lives. Now please do not misunderstand that this passage is not saying that bad things will never happen to good people. We all know that we've grieved over godly people who have been killed in car accidents and in other disasters. But what is promised here is that the godly - those who build their lives on wisdom - who are guided by the north star of God's Word - will not have the "onslaught of the wicked" when they are punished for their wickedness.
Let me quote several passages of Scripture to help us grasp this concept of the Word. Psalm 121
tells us of the protective care of the Lord. Verses three and four are especially comforting to us. "He will not allow your foot to slip; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel Will neither slumber nor sleep." (Psalm 121:3-4
) God promises great peace and protection to those whose lives are guided by His wisdom. But for the wicked God promises that this thing called, sudden terror and sudden fear will come upon them. Proverbs 1:26
-27 speaks of a "dread" that comes upon the wicked. It says that dread, calamity, and distress will come like a storm and like a whirlwind. Then again in Psalm 49
we read of the foolish and those who approve their foolish words this terrifying statement made by the Lord, "As sheep they are appointed for Sheol; Death shall be their shepherd; And the upright shall rule over them in the morning, And their form shall be for Sheol to consume So that they have no habitation." (Psalm 49:14
The above passages instruct us as to the end of the foolish who ignore and mock God's wisdom and Word. They will have a sudden end that will overtake them. In Psalm 73
David struggled with why the wicked often seem to have it so good in their lives here on the earth. He came to the point of almost losing his faith and betraying others who followed God with all their hearts. Then he said that he came into the sanctuary and saw the latter end of these who walk in wickedness and foolishness. He spoke of how suddenly they fall and are destroyed. No matter how good anyone has it here on the earth, they will one day face God in the judgment. No matter how awesome they have it now - there is a latter end for them when all their deeds will follow them to that place of ultimate payback or reward. The wicked who will not turn from their sinful ways will face this ultimate dread - but the godly who order their ways according to God's wisdom will not have this happen to them.
We are told in verse 26 that Jehovah will be our "confidence." The Hebrew word for "confidence" here is fascinating because of what is points to spiritually. The word is "kesel" and it means a sense of confidence and security. It also points to an area of the body - the midsection or specifically the area where our kidneys are located. The reason this is fascinating is because in Leviticus 3:4
; Leviticus 4:9
and Leviticus 7:4
this exact same word is used of sacrifices that were made before God. In Leviticus 3
it is used of the peace offering that was made before God. In Leviticus 4
it was the sin offering and in chapter 7 it spoke of the guilt offering. When we consider this word and its usage it paints a beautiful picture for us of what Christ does for us. These were all pictures of how these sacrifices would take care of sin and promise peace to those who confessed their sin and brought them to God for a payment for that sin. They were all precursors of what Jesus Christ would do through His death and resurrection. Thus the idea here is that our confidence is not in ourselves but rather in our Lord. That is exactly what this verse says - that Jehovah will be our confidence.
We are also told that our foot will not be caught in the snares of the wicked - in the things which their lifestyles bring upon them. Our foot will be firmly planted on a rock - the Rock Christ Jesus. We will have our lives firmly planted in the Word of God - which is the rock upon which the house that did not fall was built. The sand of the world system and its shifting views of truth and godliness will not stand in that day. Instead they will face the sudden fear and sudden onslaught of God's judgment in the end. But for those of us who love the Lord and live according to His wisdom, our ultimate fears are gone - taken away by the grace of God and the "kidneys of Jesus Christ" which were offered on our behalf as a peace offering, a guilt offering, and a sin offering which brings us into God's favor and protection. Learn to delight, not in yourself and your own strength, but rather in God who freely has given us forgiveness and grace in Christ Jesus our Lord!
When you lie down, you will not be afraid; When you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. Proverbs 3:24
If you have ever lost a night's sleep due to fear or worry, you know what a blessing it is to have a sense of security and peace as you go to bed. That is what God promises to those who base their lives upon His wisdom. So today as we look at our proverb of the day, we will look at how wisdom grants us that peace and ability to lie down and have a great night's sleep.
The first thing we see here is that there is a promise given to us that we will not be afraid as we lie down at night. Why would we fear though? How does God's Word and Wisdom keep us from having fear in our hearts? According to first John 4:18
fear has to do with punishment. The one who lives according to God's wisdom does not have to fear punishment becasue he knows that God's grace has removed it from us. This as true in the Old Testament in the sacrificial system, and in the New through the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God slain for the sins of the world. Therefore we know that the worst case scenario has been solved by the work of Jesus Christ.
There are other ways in which we know God's wisdom will watch over us. Much of the wisdom that we read of in the book of Proverbs deals with making wise decisions and staying away from things that are harmful to us. We are warned again and again in Proverbs that certain choices and certain paths will not be blessed. They may look good at first - and even bring pleasure initially, but in the end they are very harmful and dangerous. That is why when we give ourselves to walking in the wisdom of God that we will be able to lie down and not be afraid. We will be able to lie down and have sleep that is sweet. Basing our lives upon the Word of God - especially taking the advice and counsel of the proverbs that God has given to us truly will yield a peaceful life filled with His blessing.
I'll close today's post with a quote from the book of James, "Who among you is wise and understanding? Let him show by his good behavior his deeds in the gentleness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so
lie against the truth. This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy. And the seed whose fruit is righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace." (James 3:13-18
) There it is for us in full view. When we live our lives by the wisdom that God gives to us - we will live a life that will be filled with the "peaceable" fruit that such wisdom brings to our lives.
Then you will walk in your way securely And your foot will not stumble. Proverbs 3:23
In today's world people crave security. They have security cameras, security systems that monitor doors and windows, and some even have security guards to keep them safe. The problem with all this is eventually you are going to have to leave your home or workplace - where you will have to walk around and experience a lifestyle outside of the secure parameters that you try to set up for yourself. One thing that the person who understands the fall of mankind from a Scriptural perspective is that one of the most dangerous people in our lives is . . . wait for it . . . ourselves! How can we hire a security detail to guard us against our own sinful tendencies?
What will guard us from ourselves - as well as provide protection from other outside threats is wisdom. This verse points all the way back to verse 21 and ultimately back to verse 13. Both these verses tell us that we need to keep wisdom foremost in our thinking as well as in our vision. When we set our sights on wisdom, desiring to have not just wisdom, but understanding and discretion in where we go, what we do, and what we say - we will learn that we are placing ourselves in the best security net possible.
Wisdom will help us to "walk in our way securely." Walk is the Hebrew word "halak" and it refers metaphorically to the pathways and behavior of one's life. When we choose pathways and behavior that manifests God's wisdom - we are choosing a very secure lifestyle and pathway. The security spoken of here (the Hebrew word is "betah") means a calm assurance. It speaks of an assurance and safety that comes from knowing that you have God's protection. It speaks of having a security in God that keeps us from being too self-assured that we become careless.
We are told that when we walk this way in God's wisdom that our foot will not stumble. We stumble because we do not see something in our path that might cause us to trip and fall. Scripture calls these things stumbling blocks - as well as the sin that might trip us up in life. When we walk according to God's Word in both theology as well as practical insight and wisdom - these trip cords and stumbling blocks are illumined to us so that we avoid them and do not find ourselves tripped up by them.
Want security in your life - a security that goes far beyond the physical security this world can offer? (and biblically I even wonder about that) This security only comes from knowing and following God's Word with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. It comes as you fill your mind with His Word - and learn to discern and discriminate between the things in the world that will bring either blessing or problems. That, my dear saints of God, is security. All other promises will ring hollow and empty.
So they will be life to your soul and adornment to your neck. Proverbs 3:22
There is a two-fold set of rewards that God promises for those who gather to themselves sound wisdom and discretion for their lives. The first is what we’ve dealt with for the past three days. It is having God’s life in our souls. We’ve looked at how this works in the threefold way that our souls function – in our mind, will, and emotions.
The next picture painted for us is that of something adorning our necks. There were several things that were hung about people's necks that served as adornment. One was a medal that was given because of a victory at the games. This medal signified victory and the honor given to the victor in that moment. When we walk with God instructing and leading us, we will see victory over several things. We will see victory when we say no to this present world and the moral paths that it would have us walk. We will see victory over the devil and the lies and flaming darts that he shoots at us to get us off track. We will also see victory over our own sinful flesh and the ways that it wants to have its own way.
Another way we see an ornament put around someone’s neck is in Daniel when Belshazzar puts one around Daniel’s neck to signify that he is the third ruler in the kingdom. What this adornment meant was that Daniel had authority. Sound wisdom and discretion will grant us authority in our lives. There is something about walking in God’s ways that brings authority to what we say and what we do for Him. It is one thing to give our opinion on a matter, and quite another when we share God’s Word with all the authority of God Himself in what we offer to others.
The last way that I will describe this “adornment” to our neck is in the way most of us see it almost every day. It is when we see adornment on women to create beauty. I have a wife and four daughters who wear necklaces that truly enhance their beauty. I am amazed at how a little dangly piece of metal with something on the end of it can match an outfit they are wearing – and even add to it. That is what God’s wisdom does to our lives. It helps bring the beauty of the Lord to our countenance, to our attitudes, and to our words. There is such a beauty that He grants us when we choose to speak His Words in the situations that we face. Proverbs says that these words can be like apples of gold in settings of silver. They are truly beautiful – and can bring such comfort, encouragement, and blessing to those who hear them.
May God bless us continually with these wonderful ways that he adorns our necks as we speak with sound wisdom and discretion. May He grant wonderful authority, victory, and beauty to our lives daily. Embrace wisdom from Him and you will have these things.
So they will be life to your soul And adornment to your neck. Proverbs 3:22
If this is not enough to bless us for a lifetime - we also see that the life of God is being poured not just into our minds and wills - but also our emotions. This is a twofold blessing to us. First, we are protected from having our emotions lead us. Too often we find that we are far more emotionally driven than Scripture and Holy Spirit led. We feel a certain way emotionally and we allow that "feeling" to be what leads us. This can be dangerous because I can speak personally of how often I just didn't "feel" like being a Christian in my attitude or actions. This did not come to me in that particular package, because I think it would be far easier to reject. It came to me in a variety of packages. I just don't feel like getting up and having my quiet time. I just don't feel like reading the Bible right now. I just don't feel like witnessing to that person. Then there are the feelings of anger, resentment, bitterness, and a host of other negative emotions that come in dealing with people. One area I don't want to forget in sharing these things is times when desires rise up within me calling for fulfillment. At times those desires run contrary to Scripture, yet if I walk only in my emotional state, I will find myself following those emotions into something that is sin. But there is another way. That way is learning to examine emotions with the Word - and to reject emoitons that will lead to sin and to choices that I will regret later.
When we speak of emotions there is a picture that is very instructive. That picture is the one where we see the difference between being driven by emotion versus being led by the Spirit of God. When sheep are being driven - the one driving them is the butcher. He is driving them to the slaughter house - and ultimately to their death. The one who leads the sheep is the shepherd. When we are driven by our emotions - the world, the flesh, or the devil is most likely in control. They want to drive us through moment by moment feelings that we have rather than by the life of God, which would instruct us in what is right. The difference here is that one will drive us by whatever feeling is dominant in the moment, while the other will help us to discern between actions that are good or bad. We will discern that even though we may have positive emotions immediately by doing something - the long term effects will be much worse. In the same way we may be led by God to choose something that may not bring immediate gratification, yet in the long run will bring great blessing into our lives. Without the Spirit of God using the Word of God to lead us in the way of the life of God, we may make many foolish choices simply because we were emotionally driven at the moment to make them.
There is also a wonderful way that God grants us emotions as well. As we learn to embrace the work of God in our emotions we will have times when we can release ourselves to wonderful emotions as well. Jesus experienced great joy as well as weeping and sorrow in the time He was on the earth. His was a wonderful example of how God works in us, even using our emotions as He does that work within us. Worship is a place where this can happen - having strong emotions toward God as we sing to Him and praise Him. Obedience can yield incredible emotion as we do the will of God and are rewarded for it with a sense that things are good. God may move us to great emotion in prayer - where we have seen in Scripture that people often weep and grieve before God as they intercede before God and let their emotions out before Him. All these are beautiful ways that God works in our emotions. As we are taught by His Spirit of His ways and know Him - these things can be embraced and even help us as we learn to live our lives for His purposes.
How important it is to experience the life of God in our souls - and by that to experience Him in our emotions. We can choose to be driven by our emotional state of mind in what we do. To be driven in this way is a horrible way to live, for our feelings may swing from one extreme to another. To be led by the Spirit involves setting ourselves in a direction according to God's Word - and to submit our emotions to Him. He will help us to know over the course of our lives how to reject certain emotions that would lead us astray, and how to embrace others which will come as He guides us through life.