Proverbs 11:30 “The fruit of righteousness is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise.”
This passage led me to 2 Chronicles 7:3-and the dedication of the temple in Jerusalem. “When all the Israelites saw the fire coming down and the glory of the LORD above the temple, they knelt on the pavement with their faces to the ground and worshipped and gave thanks to the LORD saying, “He is good; his love endures forever.” That’s an example of the fruit of righteousness; the tree of life that wins souls. They had labored steadfastly to build the temple, and it was now completed and beautiful, and meant to bring honor and glory to the LORD. The fire and glory of the LORD caused them to worship him. In the same way, people can see the power of God in our lives. Matthew 5: 16 -Jesus tells us that we should let our light (the Holy Spirit, the power of God, his truth) so shine before men that they, seeing our good deeds (and the good that living according to His Word brings into our lives) they’ll glorify our heavenly Father. They may not be able to identify exactly what it is, but they can see the Holy Spirit at work in us and our lives. When the Holy Spirit is working in us and in our lives, they’re drawn to that “whatever” it is about us that’s different. That’s actually Jesus drawing them unto himself through us. Remember he said, “When I am lifted up, I will draw all men unto me.” He’s lifted up when we live lives of love and uprightness before God and men.
That “tree of life” is the tiny seed that is planted in one’s heart when they see the power of God working in our lives. It becomes or creates a desire to seek out what it is we have and then draws them to the Lord. That tiny seed can become a “very large tree in which all the birds would build their nests.” It can become a tree of life, not only to the one you brought to Jesus, but to the ones who will come to know him through that one, and to still others through those.
When I read this passage about soul winning, I thought about how, not only is it wise to win souls-Jesus tells us to lay up treasure for ourselves in heaven, and that’s what we’re doing when we win souls. But this passage speaks to me also of the need for wisdom in winning souls; in preaching the gospel and speaking to people who don’t know him about Jesus or in ministering to them from the Word. God is not a bully or tyrant. He is love, as the Bible says. God doesn’t force himself on anyone; he is a gentleman. Jesus never spoke to anyone who didn’t want to listen; and he never asked anyone that he healed what they’d done to deserve their sickness. He didn’t point any fingers at anyone in accusation except the Pharisees and hypocrites, and He said that he’d not come to condemn the world but to save that which was lost-(the truth). Jesus said that we’re not to judge or we’ll be judged. Jesus met everyone at the point of their need-right where they were. He saw the human being as he or she was originally created to be-an image and likeness of God; and he saw the need. We need to do the same. Paul tells us to let our speech be seasoned with salt and to make the most of every opportunity. That means using wisdom.