Will You Be Found Wanting?

Nicole Headshot in blue shirt

Nicole D. Hayes, Founder, Voices Against the Grain

Tekel (means “weighed”): You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting. –Daniel 5:27, New International Version

The New Living Translation uses the words “have not measured up” and the New American Standard Bible uses the words “found deficient.”

The Gill’s Exposition commentary on Daniel 5:27 gives the meaning on ‘Tekel’:

“though art weighed in the balances: of justice and truth, in the holy righteous law of God; as gold, and jewels, and precious stones, are weighed in the scales by the goldsmith and jeweler to know the truth (the integrity) of them, weighed with great exactness, to know the worth of them… where a person’s principles, practices, are to be weighed; and it is sad where they are found light and wanting…pretending to be righteous and holy and will be found wanting of that holiness and righteousness…his works will be found wanting, and not answerable to the demands of a righteous law, and he without the wedding garment of Christ’s righteousness, and so naked and speechless. The fire of the word will reveal, try, and burn up and being able to stand against it; and if these are weighed in the balances, they will be found wanting of real truth and goodness, and be but as chaff to wheat…”

Daniel 5:27 along with the commentary, references those whose works, intentions of their heart and their lifestyle has been counterfeit and unrighteous in the eyes of God.  They pursued vanities and not the truth; not the true oil to fill their lamps. Their living will be measured against God’s standards and found to be deficient. Their vain living and works absent of the righteousness of Christ will be burned up in the fire like hay or wood. The fire will test what work each has done, and if anyone’s work is burned up he will be saved but only through the fire. However, those robed in Christ’s righteousness, who have operated in the truth, will be like pure jewels and stones whose works when measured on the scales will not be deficient but of lasting, enduring, eternal substance and significance.

scales Daniel 5-27

1 Corinthians 3:11-15 also references those who build their lives on foundations other than the true foundation of Christ Jesus. In doing so, no matter their worldly accolades and achievements, they will come up short in their eternal impact.

That which we love, we seek. Many people pursue the vanities of worldly significance, ignorant and oblivious to what will truly be of significance/weight/value in the eternal. This grave and irreversible reality is sealed after they have died, have been eulogized and unable to do no more. They will be without excuse.

Paul also says “each man’s work will be burned up in the fire,” and what will remain? The nearer you draw to God in THIS LIFE, it sets your course on your role with GOD in Eternal Life. As Believers, we will not be judged for our sins but our work will be judged. What work did we do for Him? In Matthew 6:33, Jesus told us to “seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness” and to be near to Him, and to love Him. We are establishing an eternal inheritance for ourselves.


Sometimes I am led to expand more in my writings but have not felt that leading here. The message is piercing and sobering. It calls us to take a serious account of our living thus far; to ask God to reveal to us areas where we are falling short. To seek and pursue Him with everything we have. To yield ourselves to the Holy Spirit’s leading into truth and to follow in the right direction. We want to hear those words, “Well done, thy good and faithful servant.”

Will your work be sustained or burn up? Will you be found wanting on the scales? Your folly will be made manifest at a time in which there are no “do overs”; the window of “redo” will have closed as you find your living and works deficient, if you are found wanting on the scales according to God’s standards.

Have you lived as God calls us–to be holy and righteous? Have you provided people with sufficiency, weight and truth? What fruit have you produced in their lives that will give them eternal weight?




Hard to Control

If you have been foolish, exalting yourself, or if you have been devising evil, put your hand on your mouth. – Proverbs 30:32

Jason M. Alexandre, Voices Against the Grain Devotional Writer

Jason M. Alexandre, Voices Against the Grain Devotional Writer

Just because I can, doesn’t mean I should. Just because I know it, doesn’t mean I should say it. “All things are lawful, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful, but not all things build up. Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor.” –1 Corinthians 10:23-24

How many times have we said something out of our lips that we wish we could take back? Maybe we put down another by way of slander or maybe we revealed something of another’s life told to us in secret that was not meant for the recipient’s ears. For we know it is bad in itself to think ill but we know that it is much worse to speak it. For speaking it implies an approval to the evil thought and a willingness to infect others with it.

You say, “But that’s my right! I’m not going to let anyone censor me!” Yes, my brother or sister, it is your right. It is lawful. However, if you profess to be a Christian, we ought not merely consider what is lawful for us but what is beneficial, and for the use of edification. The Christian ought to be concerned about his neighbor’s welfare considering his own conduct in order not to hinder their neighbor’s holiness, comfort, or salvation.

We ought to say to ourselves, “Today I will control my tongue and not let it control me. Exercise a Holy violence over yourself if necessary and put your hand on your mouth! “For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so. –James 3:7-10. For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. –James 3:2


Those who take care to consciously choose to control their tongue demonstrate a sign of true grace. The word “perfect” in James 3:2 doesn’t mean he is literally perfect as in will never make mistakes again but it means that man or woman is upright. Is not uprightness a characteristic of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in which we are aiming to become more like? For the wisdom and grace which enable us to rule our tongues will also enable us to rule our actions.

“Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. James 3:13-18 Amen.


Jason’s vision is for the gospel to continue to spread throughout the world and believes it is Christian’s responsibility to carry out this mission effectively. To learn more about the organization for which Jason volunteers, please visit www.HaitiChristianity.org.

Learn more about Jason M. Alexandre here.

A Life Worth Living

Herbert G. Bowen, VATG Guest Blogger

Herbert G. Bowen, VATG Guest Blogger

Psalm 119:71

My suffering was good for me, for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees.

This verse should be coupled with Psalm 119:7 as it says, “As I learn your righteous laws, I will thank you by living as I should!” The pairing of the verses provides an action and a reaction. The action is witnessed through our suffering, which produces enduring characteristics like patience, perseverance, and character (Romans 5:3-5). Our suffering leads us back to God (reaction), while our eyes affix themselves on the path He set before us. Now we learn that fulfilling our own desires doesn’t glorify God, but degrades us. Therefore, may we cast out the notion that sin is acceptable, for our time on Earth is borrowed and we only have one life to live it right. So let us evade the evil found at night and run toward the fulfillment found in the light.  For wrongdoing bears little opposition; but righteous living finds many enemies, though stays favorable in God’s sight. Amen

About Herbert G. Bowen, Jr.

Born in King of Prussia, Pa., Herbert G. Bowen Jr., accepted the Lord Jesus Christ at the tender age of 5. An active member of the Central Church of God in Charlotte, N.C. where he resides, Herbert serves as a youth/discussion group leader, where he has preached and taught Sunday school, as well  as Wednesday night service. In addition, he has preached at Second Baptist Church in Pottstown, Pa., Destiny City Church in Salisbury, N.C.  At his current age of 23, Herbert is the youngest board member on the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Leadership Council, where he serves to lessen the costs of tuition for African American students. Moreover, Herbert serves on the PureHope advisory board, where his commitment to “wait until marriage” fits perfectly with PureHope’s mission to bring a Christian solution to an immoral culture.

Finally, Herbert through the will of God writes weekly devotionals to combat the decreasing morality in the 18-30 age group a.k.a., “the transition gap.” This is an effort to re-introduce Jesus Christ to this spiritually starved generation. His devotionals go out to 2,000+ people and continues to grow under the Lord’s watchful eye.  He is a graduate of Purdue University with a degree in Business Management. He provides business expertise to help others start their businesses.