Have you ever seen or heard these two words before? When I first heard them used by someone, I imagined they had something to do with taking out the trash in another language. Why? I honestly have no idea. My brain has been known to imagine odd translations for words I don’t understand. If that wasn’t what they meant, I then assumed they were referencing the name of a celebrity’s multi-million-dollar yacht. You can see that right? Perhaps it’s just me, but Caveat Emptor sounds like a unique name for a yacht. Ironically, for those who don’t already know what these two words mean, you’re about to find out that would be a terrible name for a yacht.
My assumption is most everyone who is reading this right now, has never purchased a yacht before. Nevertheless, for the sake of having fun, imagine this scenario with me. You show up at a luxury marina ready to spend three million dollars on a boat that will take you anywhere you want to go. There at the marina, a salesperson decked out in Burberry and Gucci takes you on a tour of several different vessels until they stop to show you the finest yacht of their entire collection. After showing you the boat, the salesperson walks you around the rear of the vessel to reveal to you its name. They then say, “Don’t think too far into it, but the previous owner of this yacht decided to call it Caveat Emptor.” You respond by asking, “Oh yeah, now what does Caveat Emptor mean?” The salesperson then tries to get your attention off of the name, pointing to another feature on the boat, but you’re still interested in what the vessel’s name means. Finally, the salesperson answers your question and says, “So…it means, let the buyer beware.”
Nope. No thank you. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not going to happen. It doesn’t take a genius to realize that’s not the name of a boat one should buy.
Caveat Emptor translated from Latin truly means, “let the buyer beware.” It’s a proverb that has become particularly common in real estate to imply that after a seller lists all the known problems with the property they are selling, the buyer cannot recover any damages from the seller for problems discovered after the sale. The uncertainty of making a big purchase is the reason why warranties have become so popular in modern times. With a warranty, if an unexpected but essential repair is found after purchasing let’s say a home or a car, the warranty company will cover the cost for the repair to be completed.
The concept of buying and selling is quite prevalent throughout the Bible. From the well-known verse in Proverbs that says to “Buy the truth, and do not sell it…” to the passage in Revelation that tells us anyone who refuses the mark of the beast will be unable to buy or sell. If there’s any common denominator in relation to buying and selling in the scriptures, it is that the enemy of our soul desires to convince us to invest in what will cause us pain, frustration, and heartbreak in the long run. Whereas the Lord will provide us guidance through prayer, giving us a Caveat Emptor disclaimer, Satan will encourage us to buy whatever pleases our flesh. Satan is the car salesman who tells you to buy the used Corvette on the lot because it’s one sharp-looking car. Hurrying you through the purchasing process, he will tell you to sign on the dotted line without even allowing you time to consider the car’s history and how much it’s going to cost you in payments each month.
What you have to understand is that there are no warranties for certain purchases Satan will convince you to make in this life. Am I talking about financial purchases alone? Not necessarily. Although he will persuade you to buy material possessions that will ruin your life. I am more so saying that Satan has been known to lead people to buy into certain philosophies, without telling them what might go wrong after they start believing worldly ideas. If you’re looking for a case and point, look no further than what he convinced Eve to believe in the garden of Eden. Satan connived Eve into believing she could be like God, knowing good and evil once she ate from the forbidden tree. What Satan did not tell her is that that decision would cause her to not only know evil, but now she would have the ability to do what is evil. Once the purchase was made, there would be no refund or going back.
The good news is, as I already mentioned, the Lord will provide us guidance through prayer before we make key decisions in our lives. In Psalms 32:8, David spoke prophetically in God’s voice by saying, “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.” Truly God desires to guide us into making the right decisions, the problem is we typically don’t ask for direction when making every decision.
Perhaps you will pray about a big decision but realize God desires to talk to you about even the smallest of decisions. Why is that so? The reason is, as I’ve discussed, Satan can lead you to make one small purchase that will send you in the wrong direction. The Lord, on the other hand, will always give you peace of mind before you purchase anything and everything. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Andrew is the proud husband to Chelsea and father to Carson. Currently, he serves as youth pastor at the First Apostolic Church of Aurora, Illinois. He has been involved in youth ministry in some capacity for the last 13 years. Additionally, He serves as the Section 12 Youth Director and Media Coordinator for Illinois Youth Ministries. On the side, he owns a creative design company called Spark Innovative Solutions. His educational background includes a BA in Psychology, (minor in Communication) from Oakland University and an M.Ed. in School Counseling from Liberty University.