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  • Writer's pictureAlan Fong

Vinegar to the Teeth

Today’s Verse:

As vinegar to the teeth, and as smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard to them that send him. ~Proverbs 10:26


Apple cider vinegar is touted as a natural way to help you in many ways. It is said to aid those with gout, lower blood-sugar level, decrease risk of diabetes, lower cholesterol levels, and aid in weight loss. However, one of the side effects to be careful of is its effects on the enamel of your teeth. Apple cider vinegar is acidic and sharp. If you swish it in your mouth, you will damage the enamel of your teeth and experience tooth decay. Vinegar to the teeth leaves a strange feeling and a wearing away. Solomon uses this description to describe the impact that a lazy, irresponsible, and sluggish person has to an industrious and hardworking believer.

We see the description.

The words “slothful” and “sluggard” are synonymous with a lazy person. He despises work, industry, and accomplishment. He is a constant procrastinator and approaches everything with great slowness and lack of motivation. He is described as a great waster and as someone who is in a deep sleep or comatose. He is so lazy that Solomon describes him as someone who does not roast that which he took in hunting. He is constantly idling, inattentive, and extremely apathetic about everything going on in his life.

We see the dissatisfaction.

Solomon uses two similes to describe the sluggard: as vinegar to the teeth and as smoke to the eyes. Vinegar to the teeth is a very acrid and sharp feeling and taste. Vinegar has an unforgettable feeling that you want to remove as quickly as possible. Smoke in the eyes is very bothersome. Both of these similes describe the sluggard as an irritant to those who employ him for a task. They know that assigning a lazy person to a task will result in little to no progress, many excuses for nonperformance, and the eventual knowledge that the employer himself will have to get the job done. The sluggard is an irritant, an annoyance, and a burden.

We see the difficulties.

Eventually, a sluggard’s nonperformance catches up with him. When others are prepared for the cold of winter, the sluggard runs out of supplies and is found wanting. When he should have been taking care of his property by cutting the grass and removing the weeds, nettles and weeds have overgrown instead. His property is in disrepair and in need of attention. In the end, a sluggard is his own worst enemy.

Look diligently and determine if a slothful spirit possesses you. It takes decision-making, goal-setting, discipline, and holy ambition to overcome being slothful. “The hand of the diligent shall bear rule: but the slothful shall be under tribute.” Rise up with the spirit of an entrepreneur and be productive, profitable, and resourceful. Set daily, weekly, and yearly goals in every area of your life. Live by a schedule to get more done.

Have a diligent God Morning!

Bible Reading Schedule: Matthew 13-14

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