Dead flies make a perfumer’s oil stink, so a little foolishness is weightier than wisdom and honor.
I have been so encouraged by the number of New Life folks that have made a commitment to read the Bible on a daily basis. As we pray that God would establish a healthy church within our faith community it is important to have a shared value of reading God’s word. As God’s truth is discovered it is essential to also properly apply His word. It is foolish to know the truths of scripture but avoid application. Ecclesiastes 10:1 is a practical reminder of the devastating power that foolishness carries!
We have all seen the impact of a foolish decision. Much like the destruction of dead files in the perfumer’s oil, we know too well the power of foolishness. I am reminded of so many throughout recent history who have lived with a high level of integrity only to tarnish their reputation with a poor decision. The reality is that we are all prone toward foolishness. One of the reasons that we have stressed Bible reading and application is that by God’s grace our minds would continue to be transformed.
We have often discussed the importance of fearing God. The Bible claims that “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” Proverbs 9:10. Many have asked what exactly the writer of Proverbs (under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit) had in mind when he expressed the importance of fearing God. Here are a few questions that may help bring clarity:
Do I respect God in the way I live?
Do I hate evil?
Do I seek and listen to good counsel?
I find that an honest assessment of those simple questions serve as a good gauge for my attitude toward God.
Another gauge to help discern an attitude of foolishness or wisdom can be discovered through the content that God has provided in the Bible. Here are a few verses from the Wisdom literature that quickly identify a foolish person:
The foolish look with haughty eyes (Proverbs 6:17).
The foolish engage in slander (Proverbs 10:18).
The foolish joke about their wrongdoing (Proverbs 10:23). The foolish make great boasts (Psalm 12:3).
The foolish are stubbornly right in their own eyes (Proverbs 12:15).
The foolish are quickly annoyed by insults (Proverbs 12:16).
The foolish lash out in rash words like sword thrusts (Proverbs 12:18).
The foolish express no shame over their folly (Proverbs 13:16).
The foolish speak and act with recklessness and carelessness (Proverbs 14:16).
The foolish spew folly from their mouths (Proverbs 15:2).
The foolish despise instruction and reproofs from those who are wiser (Proverbs 15:5).
When the foolish try and speak in a dignified manner it feels artificial (Proverbs 17:7).
Rebukes just bounce off of the foolish (Proverbs 17:10).
The foolish love to boldly pronounce their opinions (Proverbs 18:2).
The foolish have repeatedly been ensnared by their words in their past (Proverbs 18:7).
The foolish are often characterized by quarreling (Proverbs 20:3).
The foolish frequently disregard wisdom (Proverbs 23:9).
The foolish have a history of repeating their folly (Proverbs 26:11).
Those known to be wise are concerned and burdened by the words and actions of the foolish (Proverbs 27:3).
The foolish rage or mock when arguing with others (Proverbs 29:9).
The foolish love to give full vent to their spirit (Proverbs 29:11).
The foolish are quick to speak (Proverbs 29:20).
The foolish are often characterized by shouting (Ecclesiastes 9:17).
Obviously this is not an exhaustive list of foolishness found throughout the pages of the Bible. Let me encourage you to research the scriptures for the actions and attitudes of a fool. When you examine this topic it becomes painfully obvious just how naturally our hearts are inclined toward foolishness.
Let’s join together in prayer asking God to establish our hearts in His wisdom.
Our Pastor writes most of the blog posts we publish, however, occasionally some of our other church leadership (some staff, some volunteer) who also contribute to the New Life blog.