Verses 13-16 all major on the heart – a happy heart, a discerning heart, a cheerful heart. Verse 19 is one to laugh over. A wise man is not easily put off by a few difficulties.
“The fear of the LORD is instruction in wisdom, and humility comes before honor.” v33
Instruction is such an important part of proverbs. Wisdom is being able to take on instruction. Folly is rejecting instruction.
And it is interesting to note how Solomon frames this truth. We’ve seen previously that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. So if you have a holy and reverent fear of God, you are on the road of His wisdom.
It seems like a good idea then to flip the table for a moment, and instead of looking at “wisdom” as the object of this truth, look at “the fear of the LORD”.
So we see that if we fear God we gain wisdom, by the very fact that we have and are affected by that fear.
We can help ourselves a great deal in life by grabbing hold of this fundamental truth – We need to fear the Lord.
He is the God who opened up the earth and swallowed Korah in His wrath. He is the God who threw fiery blazing meteor strikes on Sodum and Gommorrah. He is the God who will come again, the rider on the white horse who will tread the winepress of His fury.
But He is also the God who calmed the wind and the waves. He healed the bleeding woman and raised Jairus’ daughter up. And for his friend, He waited for their death to show His saving power, that death was not an end-point.
He is the God who for our sake, mere mortal and broken and having rejected Him – He poured out His just wrath on His Son Jesus, who became a curse for us, hung on a tree, that we might be free from death, saved from our sin and the judgement of it.
This is the God we are to fear! And it’s not a hiding fear is it. Not a running away in terror.
Because He is our dear heavenly FATHER. He is our King, Jesus, the SON. And He is our friend, the HOLY GHOST, always with us and working for our good.
It is a holy fear, a reverent and obedient kneeling before Him, coming before Him, casting our cares on Him and asking Him for help.
And in the act of working out this fear, of wrestling with what it means for us – we are being instructed in wisdom.
This is a fundamental and deep, but simple, truth.
Oh Lord God Almighty – Please teach us to fear You, more and more as the day draws near. Instruct us in Your wisdom heavenly Father. And please show us Jesus!