The Fear of the LORD Is The Beginning Of Wisdom

I know I have taken quite a while with the next part of the Frankenstein series, but this was in my heart today, as I was reading the Holy Scriptures.

“Whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles” – Proverbs 21:23, NKJV.

The Bible repeatedly commands people to acquire wisdom (Proverbs 1:20-22, Proverbs 8). It is not reserved for an elite class of people, for the word “men” often means “humanity.” The stark difference of the usage of terms like “men,” “humanity,” is that these are exclusively Christian terms derived uniquely and exclusively from the Bible. You will not find these in the books of other religions and cults throughout history and the nations because they did not believe that man was created in the image of God, nor that humans (there I used another term foreign to the religions of the world in the pre-Christian era) were part of a race, were one in a way.

Why is this important to know? Because the Bible is the only one that teaches that wisdom can be gained by all men, not just an elite class. But you will say to me, “there is a wisdom of the world and a wisdom of God.” True. Throughout history, man’s philosophies and theology (not the pure theology of the Bible) have infested man’s view of God because they have not derived from the Bible, they have derived from their reason (rationalism), experience (empiricism), and their feelings (mysticism). In short, worldy wisdom comes from within man, not from God, and it is “earthly, unspiritual, demonic” (James 3: 15, ESV). Godly wisdom, on the other hand, comes directly from God and it is “first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere” (James 3:17, ESV).

Why should you gain godly wisdom? “Do not forsake [wisdom], and she will keep you; love [wisdom], and she will guard you. The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom, and whatever you get, get insight. Prize her highly, and she will exalt you; she will honor you if you embrace her. She will place on your head a graceful garland; she will bestow on you a beautiful crown” (Proverbs 4:6-9, ESV).

What’s the first step? “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight” (Proverbs 9:10, ESV). R.C. Sproul says that this “fear” of the Lord is “not distrustful terror of God, but rather the reverent awe and worshipful response of faith to the God who reveals Himself as Creator, Savior, and Judge.” Job also expounds on this “fear of the Lord,” “Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to depart from evil is understanding” (Job 28:28, NKJV). And again, Proverbs, “Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline” (Proverbs 1:7, NLT). And yet again, Proverbs, “Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil” (Proverbs 3:7, NIV). Although we as Christians must not fear God in the sense of being terrified of Him as Martin Luther was before he came to the right knowledge of his Abba Father, we must take care of not forgetting the warning that to lean on our own understanding leads to death and destruction, but to lean on the rock, on the wisdom of the Almighty God is wise and good.

The world’s philosophies have come and failed. Man-centered theology and philosophy’s fall is great and terrible. But, as the Reformers in the great Reformation period wrote and lived, Sola Scriptura (Latin for the Bible alone) is the only way to acquire pure, true, and solid wisdom from above. Nothing  else will grant Christians wisdom. All other wisdom confuses, divides, destroys, and kills. God’s wisdom gives understanding, unites, destroys false arguments (2 Corinthians 10:3-6), and revives.

“Peace if possible, truth at all costs” – Martin Luther



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