The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight. ~ Proverbs 9:10
The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil. Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate. ~ Proverbs 8:13
Wisdom is more than mere intelligence, craftiness, and street smarts. Many politicians, CEO’s, and University professors possess these, yet are completely void of wisdom. Wisdom has a humble gracefulness, and is made up of moral and ethical fibers. Wisdom is founded upon a fear of the Lord (i.e., a deep reverence for God) and departure from evil (i.e., anything that is contrary to His character, ways, and statutes). Fools reject wisdom and are wise in their own eyes. But the truly wise are humble in heart and increase in their knowledge of the holy.
Although “fear of the LORD” is often initially perceived negatively, why is it actually a good thing? How does the Bible define the “fear of the Lord”? Why do people mock this?
Be still, and know that I am God. ~ Psalm 47:10 (ESV)
We are a busy and active race, constantly on the move, either being productive or wasting time with meaningless pursuits and practices. The distractions are endless, but all of this comes with a price: missing the voice and knowledge of God. Creation declares His glory (see Ps. 19:1-4), and God promises to be found by those who truly pursue Him (see Jer. 29:13).
Turn of the noise and take time away from distractions. Be still and know.
Not everyone will enter heaven. What a sad and fearful thought that many church members—even persons of the clergy—will be denied entrance. Jesus says,
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’” ~ Matthew 7:21-23 (ESV)
Only those who repent of their sins (each of us have sinned) and believe on Jesus Christ who paid the penalty for our sins. Some will argue this is unfair, but consider the following:
- God is perfectly holy and pure. By His very nature and essence He cannot, and will not, permit sin in His presence and heaven.
- Those who love sin would not enjoy heaven. The immoral, nefarious, and maleficent would abhor the absolute purity of heaven. Make no mistake, heaven would not be a paradise for those whose hearts are not changed by the Gospel and Holy Spirit.
- Some argue the Gospel is too “exclusive,” but God offers His salvation to every individual, regardless of their age, background, gender, color, or nationality. He will not force anyone to accept, but why would a person not want to?
If a deadly virus began ravaging the world, would you resent hospitals for saying there is only one cure? Would you refuse it because of its exclusivity? Yet, God says the only Cure for our dire spiritual predicament is to believe on His Son Jesus who died for our sins. Many are offended by this, and thus, forfeit heaven and every spiritual blessing that could be their’s in Christ.