“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Proverbs 1:7).
I think it would be fair to assume that most disciples of Jesus desire to be wise and knowledgeable in the way that the Bible uses those terms. The book of Proverbs is a great place to find scriptural insight for the knowledge seeker. But where do we start? According to the verse above, this important journey begins with “the fear of the Lord.”
As used in this context, the word “fear” speaks of the attitude of reverence and awe which are due to God. If we are to gain the wisdom or knowledge that we desire, we must approach him with the utmost respect for who He is and for the instruction that He is willing and able to share with us. By way of contrast, those who refuse to show God this kind of fear are characterized as “fools.” To deny God the reverence He deserves is to cut ourselves off from the Source of true knowledge and wisdom (Proverbs 1:28-33).
Proverbs goes on to highlight many of the benefits that those who “fear the Lord” experience. Generally speaking, those who choose to follow God’s instructions will avoid the life-shortening consequences that often come to those who practice evil (10:27; 14:27). Those who fear the Lord build a confident foundation for their own life and for generations who come after them (14:26). It is a healthy reverence for God that encourages us to keep away from evil (16:6) and the dangers that always come with it (19:23).
The search for true wisdom and knowledge begins BEFORE we ever hear the instructions of the Lord. It starts in our hearts with the attitude we display before our Sovereign God. It’s more than just reading God’s book. It is humbling ourselves in reverential fear before God Himself and opening our hearts to His instruction. That, my friends, is where true learning starts! Do you fear the Lord?
God loves you!