Somebody Has To Tell You

Ecclesiastes 4:13
“Better is a poor and a wise child than an old and foolish king, who will no more be admonished.”

I heard about a man who said, “I am…years old, and nobody is going to tell me what to do.” This is one of the most foolish statements anyone can make. The verse above says that “an old and foolish king” is one who cannot be admonished. Just because the king was old did not mean that he was above admonishment. Just because the king held a position that was highest in his world didn’t mean that someone couldn’t tell him what to do. The greatest fool is the person who thinks that their age and position prohibits anyone from admonishing them. Let me give you several warnings about the foolish mindset that nobody can tell you what to do.

First, everyone needs someone to tell them what to do. I often tell people that the day that nobody can tell you what to do is the day you die. The day when nobody can teach you anything is the day your potential is quenched. The day when nobody can point out your flaw is the day when your flaw becomes the source of your destruction. Everyone needs someone to tell them what to do because everyone is a sinner and everyone is imperfect. To think that nobody can tell you what to do is only a revelation of the pride and haughtiness of your heart.

Second, you are never too old or too powerful for someone to tell you what to do. Just because you have come to a certain age does not mean that you can do what you want to do. Just because you have achieved a certain position does not mean that you have the right to do anything you desire without anyone admonishing you. David was king of Israel and at least in the middle years of his life when Nathan the prophet came and rebuked him. Your age never gives you the right to do whatever you want to do. Your position is not a permit or license to do whatever you want to do without someone rebuking you. Only the fool thinks that their age and position gives them the right to do what they want to do.

Third, destruction is near when you can no longer be told what to do. Saul thought that he could do what he wanted to do, but he quickly found out that God was able to stop him when he wouldn’t listen to the prophet’s rebuke. The Scriptures say in Proverbs 16:18, “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” When you think you can do whatever you want without anyone telling you what to do is when you better beware of the imminent destruction. Satan is a master at getting people of age and position to feel that they are invincible, which is only a revelation of the pride of one’s heart. My friend, destruction and a fall are in your future when you think that your age and position make you invincible.

Your desire to do right and a humble heart are revealed by whether someone can tell you what to do. When King David was told that he was the man was when he fell to his knees and repented of his sin. Let me encourage you to keep a tender heart and a willingness to always be corrected when you are wrong. Never get the mindset or acquire the heart that believes that nobody can tell you what to do. God can always work with you when you have a humble enough heart to listen to those who point out where you are wrong. God is always able to make you a better person as long as you are willing to listen to admonishment.

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