A Dangerous Combination.
“For they hated knowledge and chose not to fear the Lord.” – Proverbs 1:29 NLT
Over and over again in the Book of Proverbs we are reminded that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Proverbs 9:10 tells us, “The fear of the Lord is the foundation of wisdom. Knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment.” It is only when we learn to fear God that we gain the wisdom He offers. He places it in our hearts and equips us with all we need to live life in a godly manner. It is only when we come to know God for who He really is that we discover the good judgment, common sense and understanding we need to live life in the midst of a fallen world. In verse 7 of today chapter, Solomon tells us that “Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline” (Proverbs 1:7 NLT). Only a fool would thumb his nose at the wisdom God makes available. To reject the wisdom God offers is to reject God. It is the same as telling Him He is useless and meaningless when it comes to adding any value to our lives. That is an incredibly foolish conclusion to make, but we all do it at times. But it is dangerous to make a habit out of rejecting God’s wisdom and refusing to fear Him. Over in chapter two, Solomon tells us just what it means to fear the Lord. It is when we tune our ears to His wisdom, concentrate on gaining understanding from Him, cry out for His insight, ask for greater understanding, and search for them with the same intensity as I would hidden treasure. Solomon tells us that if we seek from God all that He has to offer, THEN we will understand what it means to fear the Lord. It is a sense of total dependency and humble acknowledgment of our need that best illustrates what the fear of the Lord really is. And it is only when we get desperate enough to seek Him diligently and fervently that we will grow in our understanding of who He really is. We will discover that He alone provides us with wisdom, knowledge and understanding.
But if we refuse to seek Him, need Him, or rely upon Him, we will find that He is not there when the time comes. He warns, “So I will laugh when you are in trouble! I will mock you when disaster overtakes you — when calamity overtakes you like a storm, when disaster engulfs you like a cyclone, and anguish and distress overwhelm you. When they cry for help, I will not answer. Though they anxiously search for me, they will not find me” (Proverbs 1:26-28 NLT). That’s a very dangerous place to be. Only a fool would place himself in that kind of predicament. Only a fool would allow himself to reach the point where God allowed him to reap the rewards of his own stupidity and stubbornness. “Therefore, they must eat the bitter fruit of living their own way, choking on their own schemes” (Proverbs 1:31 NLT).
The fear of the Lord and knowledge of God are the key. Those two things should be our greatest aspirations. We should desire them more than anything else. But they come as a result of the acknowledgement of our desperate need for God. It is only when we recognize our need for all that God has to offer that we will seek Him diligently and desperately. And we will learn what it means to fear Him and grow in our knowledge of Him.
Father, thank You for constantly revealing to me my desperate need for You. Keep me focused on my neediness so that I might turn to You in desperateness. I don’t want to reject or take lightly Your offer of wisdom, knowledge and understanding. I want to learn to fear You more and grow in my knowledge of You. Amen.
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men