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Let’s talk about short-term assets and long-term liabilities.

Let’s talk about short-term assets and long-term liabilities.

JANUARY 18, 2024

/ Programs / Key Life / Let’s talk about short-term assets and long-term liabilities.

Steve Brown:
Let’s talk about short-term assets and long-term liabilities, on Key Life.

Matthew Porter:
It’s for freedom that Christ set us free, and Key Life is here to bring you Biblical teaching that encourages you to never give into slavery again. Our teacher on Key Life is Steve Brown. He’s an author, broadcaster, and seminary professor who’s sick of phony religion.

Steve Brown:
Thank you Matthew. If you were listening yesterday, I talked about, no, I didn’t. I was going to talk about flattery, but didn’t have time. But I read you a bunch of verses, Proverbs 7:21, Proverbs 19:6, Proverbs 20:19, Proverbs 24:24, Proverbs 26:28, Proverbs 29:5. And all of them talk about the danger of flattery. Flattery will get you into trouble and it pays back and it bites. And it bites hard. And that’s about all I said yesterday. And I don’t have a lot more to say about that, but you’ve got to be careful. I’m an encourager. It’s one of the gifts that I have. And I’ve known that. I’ve known that for most of my life, that I encourage. But God very early said, don’t do it with lies. Only encourage with the truth. And so, I’ve made a practice of being quiet, when I want to encourage, when encouragement isn’t called for. Because in order to encourage, I would have to lie. It’s like saying, my, your hat is beautiful when it’s the ugliest hat I’ve ever seen. Or, saying to somebody, your music was wonderful today at church, when in fact it was awful. Never got anything right, reached for the notes several times and never quite made it. And so, you’ve got to be careful. If God’s given you the gift of encouragement, encourage. In fact, all of us need to do that for all of us because we live in a very, very hard world. Don’t get much encouragement in our world, and so you’ve got to look out for it. I got a letter this morning from a man who wanted me to call his pastor. Now, it was in another state, and I’m going to call him because I love him and I’ve never met him. And he told me about his pastor. And he said his pastor every Sunday picks a person in the congregation that nobody knows who’s doing something for God and doing it in secret. And he gives them a gift. That is so good. We live in a culture that needs that kind of thing. And the place where it ought to be taking place is in the church. But don’t do it with flattery because that’ll get you into a whole lot of trouble. Check it out in the Book of Proverbs. Alright, let me show you something. And I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s good to remember because it’s taught so clearly in the Book of Proverbs. It’s the subject of short term assets and long term liabilities. Look at Proverbs 7:24 through 27. Now, this is about the loose woman again, but the interesting thing, and you find this in Proverbs, is the way that wisdom says look to the future. This is what it says.

Now therefore listen to me, my children. Pay attention to the words of my mouth. Do not let your heart turn aside to her, parenthetically, or to him, or his or her ways; do not stray into those paths, for he or she has cast down many wounded and all who were slain by her or him were strong men or women. His or her home is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death.

That’s hard to remember, isn’t it? I mean, sometimes some things are so good that we want them right now. And sometimes, delayed meeting of those needs, or our desires, is going to cost and it’s going to cost bad. There was a study done on poverty in America years ago. And I wish I could remember the one who gave it, but I don’t. But the study was extensive and it said that one of the main causes of poverty was the inability to deal with delayed gratification. In other words, I want it, I want it now, and I’m going to get it. And as a result, you don’t save, you don’t watch your pennies, you’re not careful, you don’t plan, and you get into trouble. And frankly, I’ve done that. I’ve been there. And so, I’m not yelling at other people for what they’ve done cause I’ve been there too. But my mentor, my late mentor, Fred Smith, and by the way, you might want to check out there are people who think I made him up in order to say some really weird things. And I really didn’t. He’s in heaven now, but he’s the wisest man I’ve ever known. But he used to talk about the problem with short time assets and long term liabilities. And he would say, if sin brought to us what it always brings to us, in the long run, we would never sin. And if good things brought to us what they will eventually bring to us, we would never make the wrong choices. It’s about short term assets and long term liabilities. And the Christian faith is about a lot. It’s about long term assets. That’s what heaven is about. It doth not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when He appears, we’ll be like Him. Not yet. Not yet, but someday I’m not going to struggle.

Eye has not seen, and ear has not heard, and the mind of man has not conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.

Those are long term assets. When you go for the short term ones, you’ve got to be careful and you’ve got to be wise. Enough said about that. As you know, we’re teaching Proverbs by subject, and talking about Fred Smith, let me say a word about ethics and business from the Book of Proverbs. One is from the 11th chapter and one is from the 13th chapter. In the 11th chapter, in the first verse, it says,

A false balance is an abomination to God, to the Lord, but a just weight is his delight.

What’s he talking about? He’s talking about business here. If you’ve got an honest business, that’s a delight to God. If you have a dishonest business, it’s an abomination to God. And because it is, it skews what you’ve been told. Proverbs 13:11

Wealth gained by dishonesty will be diminished, but he who gathers by labor will increase.

One time, I heard Fred Smith being asked a question by a young businessman and he said Fred I’m having trouble with my business I’m not sure that a man can be successful in business and be a Christian at the same time. And Fred laughed at him and he said you’re crazy, that just the opposite is true. He said, I’ve been, and he had been, he was a consultant for major business all over America, especially the oil business. He used to say, when I said, how do you do that? He said, it’s simple, you look for the ego. When you find the ego, you found the problem. But going back to the question that this young man asked, Fred said to him, I don’t see how you in the long term can be successful in business without being honest in business. And so, if you’re a Christian, be one in your business. What you say you’ll do, do it, and you’ll make a fortune. Be faithful to give excellence in whatever you do in your business. Don’t lie. Be honest about what you can do and what you can’t do, and it will pay off most of the time. Now, remember that Proverbs are not promises, they’re principles. They’re the way the world works, and they’re not the kind of thing you can say, God, you promised, because he didn’t. The Book of Proverbs is a book that describes the way the world works. And one of the things it says is that if you want to be successful in business, then be Christian in your business. Be honest in your business and you can make a fortune. I have a friend who’s dealing with a large construction project. He’s the construction manager. And the people at the company have really messed it up. And he’s caused them all kinds of problems because he’s made them go back and do it over again. Not too long ago, he said to me, you know, these guys don’t understand that if you do it right, you’ll be successful. Well, most of the time. You think about that. Amen.

Matthew Porter:
Thanks Steve. And thus ends another epic week of teaching from the Book of Proverbs. It’s a series we’re calling Street-Smart Christians. And join us tomorrow for Friday Q& A. On tap for tomorrow, which Bible translation is the correct one? Ooh, I know you want to know what they’re going to say, don’t you? I can tell. Well, tune in tomorrow and we’ll both learn together. Well, if you were to say to me, do you ever feel distressed and distracted? I would say, yes. Actually, I might say, Duh! And why would I be that rude? Because I’m distressed and distracted! Is there a cure? Well, Adam Ramsey thinks so. We recently spoke with him on Steve Brown Etc. And he shared some really deep and Biblical insights on making peace with our limitations as humans. Get your copy of that show on CD for free right now by calling us at 1-800-KEY-LIFE that’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also email [email protected] to ask for that CD. If you’d like to mail your request, go to to find our mailing addresses. Again, just ask for your free copy of the CD featuring Adam Ramsey. Last thing, if you value the work of Key Life, would you join us in that work through your financial support? You could charge a gift on your credit card or include a gift in your envelope. Or just pick up your phone and text Key Life to 28950 that’s Key Life, one word or two, doesn’t matter. Text that to 28950 and then follow the instructions. Key Life is a member of ECFA in the States and CCCC in Canada. And as always, Key Life is a listener supported production of Key Life Network.

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