Proverbs: The Fear of the Lord
As I was recently going through the book of Proverbs with some friends, I began to see a pattern of certain things. One of them was how often it was repeated that those who are wise will have the fear of the Lord.
The definitions of “the fear of the Lord” that my ESV Study Bible gives are:
“Reverence and humility before God – our maker and redeemer. Submission to the Lord. Reverent awe, and a healthy fear of God’s displeasure and discipline.”
“Any society that commonly assumes that God will not discipline sin in this life or judge it in the next will have no fear of God and will therefore give itself increasingly to evil.”
That last quote is a sobering thought…ones that make me all the more determined to fear the Lord as long as I live – and to pray for our nation, which seems to have adopted that view of God, if indeed they even believe in a God.
I had made a note of all the things that Proverbs says are effects of the fear of the Lord, which I just came across, as my Bible reading plan has me going through Proverbs again, and I thought I would share it:
The Fear of the Lord
- The beginning of knowledge. (1:7)
- Is hatred of evil. (8:13)
- The beginning of wisdom. [and insight] (9:10)
- Prolongs life. (10:27)
- Gives strong confidence. (14:26)
- Is a fountain of life. (14:27)
- Is instruction in wisdom. (15:33)
- Strength to turn away from evil. (16:6)
- Leads to life and satisfies. (19:23)
- It’s reward is riches and honor and life. (22:4)
Wow…all that is promised to us when we have a genuine fear of the Lord. They are all tools that equip us to fight the good fight of faith with strength and perseverance…and to win the battles against darkness, instead of being overwhelmed by them again and again.
So then, let us kneel before the Lord, our maker, and let ourselves be completely overwhelmed by his awesome power, his holy justice, and his amazing grace once again.