Proverbs 13:22-25 – “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, And the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous. 23 Abundant food is in the fallow ground of the poor, But it is swept away by injustice. 24 He who withholds his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him diligently. 25 The righteous has enough to satisfy his appetite, But the stomach of the wicked is in need.” NASU
Clearly this passage speaks, at least in part, about monetary wealth or possessions but it goes far beyond that and speaks to LIFE and LEGACY. I have spent most of my adult life in full time preaching ministry and the monetary reaping was not so large that I had a continual overflow of finances. In fact, much of the time we made ends meet, had a little to give to the causes God placed before us, and little to set aside for retirement or a rainy day. We did not lack but we did not have abundance and were content. What we will leave behind for our children and grandchildren in terms of money and possessions may not change their lives dramatically but what we leave behind in other ways will, should, or could.
The writer of this proverb states that leaving an inheritance to your grandchildren is not only commendable but an act of goodness or righteousness. I suggest that while that is without doubt speaking of the monetary it speaks far more than that. He also says that the wealth of the sinner or wicked is being held by them until God chooses to put it in the hands of the righteous. We find many qualifiers regarding that in scripture and it is always linked to furthering the Kingdom of God and the Gospel. He also says that the poor have the ability to achieve prosperity in saying, ‘abundant food is in the fallow ground of the poor.’ He also identifies that they are abused by injustice, the system, and men. God sees it and as we are told in the Psalms that to ‘give to the poor is to lend to the Lord’.
He then shifts gears a bit but stays in the life and legacy mode in saying that if we ‘withhold the rod we hate the child, but if we love we discipline’. That is teaching them LIFE principles and leaving them a LEGACY that they can pass on to their children and in so doing we are leaving an inheritance of godliness and morality to our grandchildren. He also tells us that the righteous have enough but the wicked person’s eyes and desire are never satisfied. Why? The righteous have God and He fully satisfies and gives us calm confidence as we face today, tomorrow, and eternity. The wicked are full of self and in that comes the traits of greed, envy, and lust for position and power and that is never satisfied.
So the writer is speaking under the inspiration of the Spirit of God and gives us some critical keys for LIVING LIFE and LEAVING A LEGACY. It is never too late to begin to LIVE and never too late to begin working on the LEGACY you are leave to those who come after you.
May God be with you as you go through your day!