Better is the poor that walketh in his uprightness, than he that is perverse in his ways, though he be rich.
What is success? Are you successful? If we trust this inspired proverb, we learn that success is living right regardless of income and failure is living foolishly though being rich. Reader, accept this godly wisdom, and reject the world's lying ideas of success.
Will you believe these words? The Creator God inspired them, and the world's most "successful" man wrote them - the king with the greatest combination of wisdom and wealth. What hinders you from believing them? Do you think you might know more?
"Better" indicates a priority for life from God and Solomon, which is a way of teaching wisdom in this book. Do you fear God and crave wisdom enough to believe it? Can you easily put more emphasis on walking uprightly than making money, and keep it there?
Can you be content in poverty? Or must you achieve middle class distinction to be content with uprightness? Please note that the Preacher exalts a poor man in our proverb!
Walking in uprightness is choosing a course of life that keeps your integrity before God and men by always doing what is holy, righteous, just, and noble.
But most men live perverse lives, by choosing a course that disregards and violates the word of God and His precepts. Their choices in life are selfish and wicked, not righteous.
This choice between an upright life and a perverse life will lead to your salvation or to your fall, depending on your choice (Pr 15:16; 16:8,19; 19:1,22; 28:18). No amount of money can save your soul from trouble here or hereafter, so it is of little value to success.
The world measures success by your eyes, flesh, and pride (I John 2:15-17). And the devil works with fiery darts to promote them (Luke 4:5-8). Can you reject them by faith?
Paul confirmed our proverb by writing, "But godliness with contentment is great gain" (I Tim 6:6). And he condemned financial ambition (I Tim 6:7-10). A poor man, living a godly life, and choosing contentment with his position and income, is the true measure of success! God approves him, and he is happy with what he has! What a blessed situation!
Are you thankful for the true success God has given you? If you desire to live a godly life in uprightness and are content with your life, God has blessed you by His grace. And if you have a source for learning the way of righteousness, you have all that you need.