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  • Writer's pictureAlan Fong

Bread of Idleness

Today’s Verse:

Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. ~Ezekiel 16:49


Idleness is time that is unproductive and not put to good use. It is a word associated with laziness and slothfulness. Solomon coined the term “bread of idleness” in Prov. 31:27 to describe the antipathy of a virtuous woman. He said, “She eateth not the bread of idleness.” She does not make idleness a common event or occurrence in her life. God calls out three underlying sins of the ancient city of Sodom that eventually resulted in abominable sins and her ruin. He said that the abundance of idleness was in her.

We see the reason for idleness.

Idleness is due to lack of discipline, planning, foresight, and organization. Idleness results in time that is wasted in unproductive activity. Idleness is bad time management. A person who does not plan ahead and live by a schedule filled with priorities is susceptible to idleness. The abundance of idleness describes someone who has too much time on their hands and is wasteful. It describes days, weeks, months, and years of doing nothing. Idle people make no contribution to something that is important and worthy. Idle people despise work, labor, and deadlines. Idle people rarely volunteer to help out. Idle people want handouts instead of putting their hand to the plow. They can be seen sitting or standing around, talking about meaningless topics. They are not driven by a sense of accomplishment and achievement. Idleness is a choice. Idleness is a bad habit. Idleness is a sin.

We see the ruin of idleness.

Idleness leads to sinful indulgences. The mind is devoid of important things that should be thought about, and instead gravitates to things that are sensual and self-indulging. The city of Sodom became associated with terrible sins of immorality because of the abundance of idleness. Idleness leads to gossip and critical talk. Idleness leads to a gross spirit of indifference. Sodom had fullness of bread. This is a way of saying that she was rich, increased with goods, and had need of nothing. Indifference means, “We don’t care about the state of things.” “It’s someone else’s problem and not mine.” The motto of an idle person is, “Let someone else do it.” Idleness leads to corrupted minds and lives. Idleness leads to contentious relationships. Idleness leads to poverty (Prov. 19:15). Idleness leads to neglected responsibilities and things falling apart (Eccl. 10:18). Idleness is the ruin of a teenager, a church, and the Christian life. Nothing good ever comes forth out of idleness. The abundance of idleness results in a rejection of God and His truth.

We see the remedy for idleness.

Is there a remedy for idleness? Yes, there is. We must walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise. We must redeem the time, for the days are evil. First, get a vision for your life. Plan some meaningful projects that you will do personally and through the local church. Have a life plan that is at least five years in duration. Second, have meaningful weekly and daily goals that are part of this plan. This should include the study of your Bible, extended seasons of prayer, witnessing to the lost, and caring for others. This should include daily exercise and family time. Schedule to be in all the church services. Third, always have a book to read, letters to write, and something to do when there is down time, delays, or disruptions to your day. Fourth, plan something big to do once a year such as a short-term missions trip. Fifth, be accountable to a trusted and faithful spiritual leader about your planning and scheduling.

Sodom’s underlying sins that led to her demise were pride, fullness of bread, and the abundance of idleness. It’s easier to become a victim of idleness than it is to be someone who is very productive. Ask God to teach you to number your days so that you might apply your heart unto wisdom.

Have a profitable God Morning!

Bible Reading Schedule: Ezekiel 16-17

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