Proverbs 14:23 In all labour there is profit: but the talk of the lips tendeth only to penury. (KJV)
Pro 14:23 In all hard work there is profit,
but merely talking about it only brings poverty. (NET Bible)
Pro 14:23 In all hard work there is profit, but talk only makes a man poor. (BBE, Bible in Basic English)
Pro 14:23 With every one who is careful there is abundance: but the pleasure-taking and indolent shall be in want. (Brenton, LXX)
Pro 14:23 In hard work there is always something gained, but idle talk leads only to poverty. (GW, God’s Word translation)
Pro 14:23 Hard work is worthwhile, but empty talk will make you poor. (CEV, Contemporary English Version)
On this labor day we have much to be thankful for. Many of us enjoy the blessings of liberty. Under our original system of government, the Founders devised a Constitution for “We the People” which greatly limited the central government. When government is limited we experience more freedom. Our freedoms have been compromised because our supposed leadership is largely ignorant of the founding principles which underlie the provisions and stipulations of our Constitution and Bill of Rights, as well as our Declaration of Independence.
This gradual shift has taken place over time. This shift is very likely not random nor accidental. It surely is not inevitable. Our nation’s public and most private schools have failed to teach the truth about the founding of this country. Students are not taught enough about Colonial American History, Colonial and Early American Literature, Civics, and the principles of economics. Students are not taught enough about the blessings of capitalism and the curse of socialism, Marxism, and Communism. Liberty can be largely lost in a single generation or so when accurate knowledge of these things is not thoroughly taught to every student.
The solution is simple and straightforward. Parents must educate their children thoroughly at home in these subjects. Take time to actually read good books on these subjects. Turn off the television to make time for reading. Don’t be distracted by sports. There are much more important things to actually learn so that our children will be productive citizens who stand up for what is right and who will insist that our political leaders are informed individuals who cannot be tempted by illicit financial gain.
Our students need to be home educated about the true history of labor. It was the labor movement that through enormous effort obtained the 40-hour week. It was the labor movement that brought improved working conditions and insisted on due process in labor relations. Much of this has also been lost. The concept of paying workers a living wage has largely been lost. It used to be that one person (often the husband) earned enough to pay for all the family needs.
We have watched our industries move overseas where companies can take advantage of far cheaper labor costs by using what we in this country would consider slave labor. Part of this has been brought about by the notion of getting something for less money. We all like to save money, but it would be a better idea to pay a little more so that work could be done in our country with workers able to make a living wage. Jesus Himself talked about the fact that the laborer is worthy of his hire (Luke 10:7). Instead, our politicians have frittered away these advances by getting “Right to Work” laws passed in a number of states. What “right to work” really means in practice is the “right to work for less,” the right to work without due process protection against unfair management practices and with fewer labor contract protections.
We have also largely strayed from the Biblical principles this nation was founded on. The United States was founded as a Christian nation. The so-called principle of “separation of church and state” is not a principle of our founding documents at all. Nor was it the practice of our original founders even after the signing of the Constitution. But that is a part of American history that is not often taught in our schools and colleges today. Look around you and you will see the dire results of this departure from our founding principles displayed in the headlines and the relentless propaganda parading as news every single day.
The wealth of a nation comes from the labor of its people. That labor can be manual or physical. It can be intellectual. But it comes from hard work. A nation’s wealth can also come from its natural resources, resources dug out of the ground or grown on the land. But the power to tax is the power to destroy. That may be a principle which has not been faithfully taught in schools for many years. I remember being taught about that when I was in the fourth grade. Yet in the first letter received from a local newly elected state representative, we were asked to suggest any new laws we thought should be passed.
It is my belief that the fewer laws we have the better off we will be. I believe that needful laws must apply to everyone equally and have a penalty for breaking them. Schools have not taught the important principle that “Where there is no penalty, there is no law.” Among the laws our country has passed which are not being uniformly enforced are those prohibiting monopolies. Fix this one problem and the country will be back on a sound fiscal policy which would benefit everyone.
To study the direct teaching of the Bible on the subject of labor study the cross references I have just newly assembled today in preparation for this post for Proverbs 14:23,
Pro 14:23 In all labour there is profit: but the talk of the lips tendeth only to penury.
In all labour. Pro 12:24; Pro 16:26. +*Pro 22:29; Pro 28:19, *Gen 3:19, Jdg 19:16. 1Ki 11:28 mg. Psa 90:17, Ecc 2:24, Isa 19:15. Mat 11:12, +*Luk 10:7, *Joh 6:27, +*1Co 15:58, **Eph 4:28. *Col 3:22, 23, 24, 2Th 3:10; 2Th 3:12, +*Heb 6:10; +*Heb 6:11.
there is profit. Pro 24:4. Pro 28:19. Ecc 3:9. **1Co 15:58. *Col 3:23, 24. *Heb 6:10.
but the talk. Pro 10:10, Ecc 5:3, Jer 12:2, +*Luk 6:46, 2Th 3:10, 11, 12, 1Ti 5:13.
tendeth only to penury. Pro 10:8. Pro 12:11. Pro 28:19.