Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
WISDOM OF FEARING GOD
Proverbs 14: 3-21
The wise fear the Lord and shun evil, but a fool is hotheaded and yet feels secure.
- (Proverbs 14:16)
The English writer and poet T. S. Elliot once asked, “Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?" We all are living in the information age and especially sum total of human information currently doubles approximately every year and a half, yet our humankind lack wisdom at certain times. Computers can store data and obey signals, but they cannot give us the ability to use that knowledge wisely. What is needed today is wisdom. From today’s passage I want to share three insights for our wise living.
The importance of using tongue wisely – v. 4 "In the mouth of the foolish [is] a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them." The word fool in this context can be translated into arrogant, hardened, and thickhead. In this scripture the rod is a metaphor for the proud, inflicting tongue in a fool’s mouth, which destroys the fool and others. However, wise words protect a person. How do we gain wise words? Wise words come from wisdom; wisdom comes from knowing and walking in the ways of the lord. When we have conflicts and differences of opinions it is important to pray that we would all have Godly wisdom about what God desires for that situation. Pray that pride or the desire for 'our own way' will not be a hindrance to glorifying God with any given situation.
The human beings are not omniscient- (v.12) “There is a way that appears to be right,but in the end it leads to death.” We have heard the saying “Man proposes, God disposes,” which means, human beings can make any plans they want, but it is God who decides their success or failure. If we analyze the problem with the chosen people of God in their journey, they did what was right in their own sight. Our present world is also telling us to lean on our own understanding. This new teaching (new age movement) tells us if it feels good, do it. That is very dangerous. Once again the Godly wisdom comes to our rescue, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;” (Prov. 3:5).
An astute psychological insight – v.13 “Even in laughter the heart may ache, and joy may end in grief.” We see many people who laugh on the outside but cry inside. The laughter is a cover-up to keep from crying. This astute wisdom reminds us again that the world's laughter will bring grief. We, also, can see in this that worldly fun (drinking, drugs, promiscuous life style, violence etc.) makes you appear to be happy for the moment, but come tomorrow is the hang-over and grief.
Prayer: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.” –(Reinhold Niebuhr)
Rev. Biju P Symon, Chicago