The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.Proverbs 1:7
There is a popular song called, “Everybody Plays The Fool.” Many have heard the song and most can relate to it, which I’m sure led to its rise in popularity. We have all played the fool in life whether it was over a crush, an embarrassing moment, or a lapse in judgement. I have played the fool many times in my life, like Charlie Brown looking at the football of sin and thinking I would try to kick it and hope for a different result than the previous outcomes. The Bible tells us that foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child, and it often rears its head in our adult life as well. I have met many people who have not seemed to mature beyond that of a child, and I have been guilty of childish foolishness as well. Although foolishness plagues us at times, it should not be something we continuously practice or a lifestyle we should be living.
I remember having a healthy fear of my parents growing up, but there were times when that fear waned and I did not fear them enough to stop my disobedience. I seemed to always be testing that line, and I inevitably lost when I crossed it. It seemed like there were cameras that followed me everywhere and reported all my wrong doings to my parents. I am not sure how they knew everything I was into, but God did not allow me to get away with anything. I acted like a fool, and I was corrected like one. I would like to say I feared them as I should, but my sore bottom would say otherwise. I lived like a fool and my parents did their best to drive it far from me.
If I were to take a poll and ask the average church goer if they were a fool, I would likely get some weird looks and perhaps some mean ones as well. Some might find the question offensive and some would vehemently disagree with the sentiment of the question. The obvious answer I would get is “Of course I am not a fool”, then “Why would you even ask such a question?” The fact of the matter is that no one would agree to being a fool, but we often act like it when we do not fear our God. One may not admit that they do not fear God but their actions would prove otherwise. I have read this verse countless times, but as our pastor preached on this, I was convicted about being a fool.
I can think back to times in my life when I thought I could sin and have a different outcome than sin’s consequences. I thought my life would be different, and I could live as I pleased and my life would be grand. I would have never have admitted that, but I sure did live like it. My actions proved that I did not fear God and my life resembled that I was a fool devoid of knowledge, wisdom and discretion. If you ask those I came into contact with about my actions, they would agree with you that I was a fool. I would make excuses for my sins, and I would not take accountability for my actions. I would like to say I no longer act like this, but there are still times when I must confess my foolishness before God and get back on track with Him. I try to keep this foolishness to a minimum and make amends as soon as God convicts me of it and brings it to mind. True wisdom comes only from God and it is something that cannot be obtained if you are not living in the fear of Him.
What would others say about you? Would they say you are a fool? What would God say? Does your life reflect that you are walking in the fear of the Lord? Fearing the Lord includes agreeing with Him in all things and walking in all the ways He would have us walk. Fearing the Lord requires doing things His way and submitting our will to His. Fearing the Lord is not doing things our own way, but doing things wholly His way. Are you a fool? God is the source of all true knowledge, wisdom and understanding. Will you fear Him today? Will your life reflect that you fear Him? Talk is cheap and He truly knows whether or not you fear Him. You may fool some, but you will never fool Him. Don’t be a fool, but walk instead in the fear of the Lord all the days of your life.