Saturday, February 6, 2016

Fear to Wisdom, Wisdom to Obedience

Psalm 111:10

"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom;
A good understanding have all those who do His commandments.
His praise endures forever." 


     To state that wisdom begins with "the fear of the LORD" is to imply that all wisdom ultimately comes from a knowledge of God, since a correct view (or knowledge) of God will cause reverential fear in the heart of the one seeking to know God. If all wisdom comes from God, then it necessarily follows that "worldly wisdom" is really no wisdom at all. Thus, the apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 3:19 that

     "the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God."

     Furthermore, he states in chapter two verses six and seven that the wisdom of this age is coming to an end, whereas the wisdom of God was ordained before time itself.

     According to Psalm 111:10, the fear of the Lord not only leads to a right view of God and the world (a.k.a. "wisdom"), but it also manifests itself in the doing of the commandments of God. In other words, anyone who claims to fear the Lord must also walk in God's commandments for his claim to be valid. Listen to the words of Jesus in Matthew chapter seven verses 21 through 23:

     "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!'"

     Jesus makes it plain that a mere declaration of faith is no evidence of salvation. To take it one step further, not even an emphatic declaration of Jesus Christ as "Lord, Lord" is sufficient to merit salvation. Instead, salvation is by faith alone in Christ's finished work, and the evidence of true faith is a doing of the will of the Father, contrasted by those who claim true faith yet are "workers of iniquity," whom Jesus will cast out "into outer darkness [where] there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 8:12; 22:13; 25:30)."

     To summarize Psalm 111:10, the fear of the Lord leads to wisdom which in turn leads to the doing of the commandments of God as a style of life.

     I will apply this verse to my life today by thanking God in prayer for at least three instances where He has taught me the fear of Himself.

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