Here’s our first selection:
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. (Proverbs 9:10)
I like The Expanded Bible’s take on this verse:
Wisdom begins with respect [fear; awe] for the Lord.
Want to get smart? Here’s where to start:
Put another way, if you don’t respect God with a whole lot of reverent awe, you just might be dumb.
Here’s how one large-brained theologian put it:
Upon encountering the Holy One, one is filled with both fear and trust and gives expression to that awe by submitting to the ethics entailed in the purity of the Holy One. Wisdom consists in transcending the fallen human world and participating in the divine, the holy. (Bruce Waltke)
Take an honest look at the past 24 hours. Do your actions show an awe and respect and maybe even a bit of fear toward God? Or do they show that you fear other people and their opinions of you more? Or maybe losing your job? Or maybe losing all your stuff?
The world wants us to fear everything but God. Don’t.
As Jesus himself said:
Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28)