Proverbs 22:8

He that soweth iniquity shall reap vanity: and the rod of his anger shall fail.


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Sin will not work. Hypocrisy will not work. If you sin with a goal in mind, you will lose it. Sin will bring vanity – profitless and worthless loss. If you use anger or violence to pursue your sinful way, it will not work. You will fail miserably. Do not lie to yourself, for only godliness and righteousness will succeed and bring a good reward (Pr 11:18).

You reap what you sow. “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” (Gal 6:7). Why the warning about deception? Because men believe they can get away with sin. But God will not be mocked. You cannot make light of His word by sinning against it. He will grind you to powder for rebellion. Repent!

Anger or violence will not bring success to sinful ways. You may temporarily force others into submission, but your wicked ways will not succeed. There is One much higher than you, and He will crush your feeble attempts to promote yourself and defend your sinful life (Eccl 5:8). Consider foolish Sennacherib (Is 10:5-19). Consider Pharoah.

Not all anger is wrong. The anger condemned here is the rage or violence of a man living in sin. Phinehas was angry in a righteous cause, and it brought him a great blessing (Num 25:1-15). Jesus was angry, but His rod did not fail at all (Mark 3:5). Sinful anger fails.

You cannot cheat God’s laws and succeed. He will not allow it. If He allowed it, then His justice and righteousness mean nothing. If you compromise in any area of your life, you will pay for it. No matter what your intentions, they will not be achieved. You lose.

David tried to enjoy Bathsheba without consequences, but she conceived. He got her husband drunk to cover the sin, but he was too faithful. He cruelly killed him and married his wife, but it cost their child’s life and brought much judgment. David lost terribly.

A hypocritical father using anger to dominate his children will lose horribly in the end – guaranteed. A wife defrauding her husband sexually to protect pride will lose miserably. A husband sneaking pornography cannot win his wife to be the dear lover he craves. An unfair employer will not survive in the end no matter how he plays his managerial cards.

Covetous men who do not give will not keep their estate by diligence or frugality (Pr 11:24; 21:13; Hag 1:1-11). A rebel child will not advance far no matter how energetic he might be to prove himself (Pr 20:20; 30:17). The joy of the religious hypocrite, who pretends on Sundays, is very short (Job 20:4-29). Be sure your sin will find you out.

But there is forgiveness from God for those who confess their sins, repent from their errors, and turn back to righteousness (Pr 28:13; I John 1:9). If you then sow godliness, you will reap God’s great reward of blessing and favor (Pr 11:18; Ps 19:11; Jas 1:25).