The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. – Proverbs 1:7 (NIV)
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. – Proverbs 1:7 (KJV)
52 Proverbs in 52 Weeks – Week 1
This week’s theme: True Wisdom
True wisdom starts with reverence and awe for our God.
Proverbs is a book that shares God’s wisdom to help us make wise decisions, discern right from wrong, and live a fruitful life that honors Him. Most of Proverbs was authored by King Solomon, and our Bible tells us that God gave Solomon great wisdom and knowledge. After Solomon honored God with a thousand burnt offerings, God appeared to him and said “Ask for whatever you want me to give you” (see 2 Chronicles 1:7 & 1 Kings 3:5). Solomon didn’t ask for riches, for victory over his enemies or other material things. Instead, he asked for the wisdom and knowledge to discern right from wrong and lead God’s people wisely (1 Kings 3:9). As is so typical of our God, He granted Solomon’s request abundantly. So much so, in fact, that Solomon “was wiser than all men” (1 Kings 4:31).
So…what did Solomon, who “was wiser than all men,” say about the quest for true wisdom? He said this: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge…” In this context, the word “fear” implies reverence, respect, awe and love for our Lord. And that’s where the quest starts…with reverence for God. Trying to gain wisdom without fear of our Lord is like trying to follow directions to a destination without knowing where to start. We just aren’t going to get there unless we start in the right place. Unfortunately, there are many people considered “smart” in our culture today that lack true wisdom. It’s not that they lack intellectual capacity. What they lack is reverence, respect, awe and love for the God who created the very universe in which we live. They didn’t start in the right place, so they’re not going to get to the right destination.
Fear of the Lord…sounds like the perfect place to kick off our quest for wisdom this year.