Proverbs 21:20 There is treasure to be desired and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up.

Introductory Thoughts

Proverbs 21 contrasts the substance of a wise man versus the substance of a fool. In the home of the wise man, one can find oil and desired treasures. Whenever a need arises, he is prepared to take care of it himself. This is not true of the fool. He cannot take care of himself. We do not know if the fool at some point had treasures and oil as well, but because of his wasteful spending habits, he no longer has those things. In addition to the fool no longer having his substance, he also cannot likely account for how he used those things. Maybe the fool, like far too many Christians, wasted his substance on pleasurable living (Proverbs 21:17). For whatever reason, the fool cannot hold onto the goods entrusted to him by the Lord. Society today has grown accustomed to living on borrowed money, thus spending the future today.

Devotional Thoughts

  •  (For children): Because Joseph knew hard times were coming, he saved up much corn. Unlike those who were unable or unwilling to store up for the future, Joseph did no not have to beg when famine came. He had enough food for himself and others.
  •  (For everyone): Do you have goods set aside for times of need? If not, why not? Can you reflect back and see that you could have had more if you had not been so wasteful?
  •  What percentage of your money do you spend on pleasure-seeking things (Proverbs 21:17)? Do you think that that expense was eternally profitable?

Prayer Thoughts

  •  Ask God to give you wisdom on how to spend what He gives you.
  •  Ask God to show you what constitutes wise purchases.