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"God Helps Those Who Help Themselves"

In one of my favorite movies "Fiddler on the Roof" there is a conversation between Tevye the Dairyman and Mendel the Rabbi's son That goes...

Tevye: As the good book says, when a poor man eats a chicken, one of them is sick.

Mendel: Where does the book say that?

Tevye: Well, it doesn't say that exactly, but somewhere there is something about a chicken.

The title of this is "God helps those who help themselves" and it is often quoted as if it comes from the Bible. This is not only not from the Bible but is actually against what the Bible teaches. Consider these two verses as opposed to this saying. [Proverbs 3:5 NASB95] Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. AND [Proverbs 14:12 NASB95] There is a way [which seems] right to a man, But its end is the way of death.

Clearly what the Bible teaches is a dependence on God for living righteously in a corrupt world. However the real problem is not people misappropriating popular sayings to the Bible but rather Biblical illiteracy which is at its very foundation.

Biblical illiteracy amongst modern day Christians is rampant. Many do not read their Bibles and are satisfied to simply go to church on Sunday and have a small portion of scripture explained to them in a culturally appropriate way for a period of 15 to 20 minutes. It is no wonder that Jesus when making mention of his second coming asked this question in [Luke 18:8 NASB95] "I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?" I want to encourage everyone to take the following 3 verses to heart.

[Romans 10:17 NASB95] 17 So faith [comes] from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

[2 Timothy 2:15 NASB95] Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.

[Acts 17:11 NASB95] 11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily [to see] whether these things were so.

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