Proverbs 11:30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.
The righteous are those who have the imputed righteousness of Christ, for no one is righteous in himself. Romans 3:10 says, there is none righteous, no not one. However, one can have the righteousness of Christ when that one’s faith is placed in Christ’s finished work on Calvary, his death, burial, resurrection, and ascension. Romans 3:22: Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. There should be no doubt that righteousness comes by faith and not by works from these passages. Those who have the righteousness of Christ are called “righteous.” Those same people have a certain result from their lives—life, or tree of life. This life is eternal life. Their own life is one that is eternal and since it is, it reproduces others with eternal life or as our text says, “winneth souls.” A righteous life desires to win others to Christ. All of us know that winning means that we must do something to compete—run a race, fight a fight, play a game, etc. There is a great competition going on each day that plays itself out around us—the competition for souls. Some win trophies; some win cash; some win a belt; some win great recognition. They have reached the highest attainment in their field of competition and won. The righteous win at the game of souls. The unrighteous are the competition; they want to win souls as well, but not for eternal life, but for eternal death. 1 Corinthians 6:9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind. To win a soul to life is to defeat the unrighteous with their goal of death. Winning a soul from the unrighteous and death is a very wise action and commendable before God. Daniel 12:2 And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
Dan 12:3 And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.
The one who wins souls is like the proverbial Einstein of Physics; he is wise in unseen verities.
The image of the “wise old owl” has one simple word to say, “Who?, Who?, Who?” The question is not hard to understand; who will win souls?
While out on visitation this week, we encountered a very common comment, “I’m working on it.” Sometimes, the comment goes something like this, “I’ve got some things I need to work on before I get saved.” Now the wise soul-winner knows that this will never work in winning that soul to Christ, for the harder that person works, the worse he gets. The downward spiral has never gone upward by attempts to “work it out.” I cannot think of one person ever won to Christ who succeeded in working some things out.
As the wise soul-winner knows, righteousness comes by faith and not works. He must lovingly call this to the attention of the one who has been fooled into the method of salvation through working it out. Even if that person does make some successful turn-arounds that are commendable, he still is not saved or righteous by those successes. Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.
The Ten Commandments and the entire Law presented in the Old Testament are given to us to teach us that no one can work enough or do enough to warrant righteousness. The Old Testament in its entirety teaches mankind that he is not capable of pleasing God through good works. That leaves mankind in a dilemma, but Christ is the solution to man’s frustration with working things out. He, Jesus, worked it all out in his perfect life, sacrificial death, supernatural resurrection, and glorious ascension. No one ever did enough work for salvation but Jesus. He worked it all out. Since He has done all the work, the wise soul-winner points the works oriented individual to the only thing necessary for salvation—faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 10:13 So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God.
Be a wise man or woman; win some soul to Christ. “It is no secret what God can do.” Just ask Stuart (Russ) Hamblin.