13 Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.
14 Blessed is the one who always trembles before God, but whoever hardens their heart falls into trouble.
These two verses were not presented as a couplet, but I found them linked by their underlying meaning – both are concerned with one’s attitudes towards God. The latter is the last verse in Proverbs to directly use the word heart so tomorrow we move to the book of Ecclesiastes.
Now let’s look at verse thirteen and what it has to say Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy. On a short term basis one may prosper, but often – usually – at life’s end things turn incredibly sour for those who prosper while concealing their sins. However, many of us know of various people who have confessed and renounced their sins found not only mercy, but goodness in life and prosperity as well. The key here is renouncing one’s sins or as the Benson Commentary says mere confession, without forsaking of sin, is not sufficient for his salvation. Could not agree more and Benson’s Commentary preceded this with the dissembling, or hiding of his sins, is sufficient for a man’s damnation.
Then we have verse fourteen which says Blessed is the one who always trembles before God, but whoever hardens their heart falls into trouble. I see this tied to the prior verse above as how can one who always trembles before God then conceal their sins before Him. Nor can one who hardens their heart then confess and renounce their sins. Harden you heart and fall into trouble or conceal your sins and you will not only not prosper, but you will not find mercy.
God wants to grant us mercy if and when we will confess and renounce our sins. God wants to bless us if we will not harden our hearts against Him. We need to fear or tremble or revere God so we will not harden our hearts against Him and fall into trouble or sin. The sin would be unavoidable or a Matthew Poole’s Commentary says about one who hardens his heart, he goes on obstinately and securely in sinful courses, casting off due reverence to God, and just fear of his threatenings and judgments. Let this not describe any of us!
It’s Monday and I hope everyone is going to have a Great Week after celebrating the best day of the year – Resurrection Sunday (aka Easter), the day of the Risen Christ.