Today’s verse gives us an important reminder on how we must guard our hearts and live with integrity, and in fear of the Lord:
Ecc 7:7 Surely oppression drives the wise into madness, and a bribe corrupts the heart.
As seen with Pharoah in Exodus, he was a great oppressor and because of this he ended up on the wrong end of God’s wrath with all the different plagues that were visited on Egypt. The same can be said with modern day rulers, Richard Nixon entered his presidency with the best of intentions, but his cheating and conniving ways sent him out of the White House and he had to resign in disgrace.
Leaders should avoid oppressing the people they govern and should not take bribes either, as the text tells us, the bribe corrupts the heart. That first bribe or taking money out of the cash register that first time, ends up snowballing into normal behavior, next thing you know, what was a five dollar note to buy a meal that you convinced yourself was just a short term loan, has now become an embezzlement of $20,000 and you are now facing felony theft charges!
The long and the short of today’s scripture is we should not oppress those under us and we shouldn’t bribe or cheat, because in the end, it always catches up to us….God sees everything and He also knows our motives.