“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. Proverbs 9:10
This isn’t the only verse that speaks of fear equaling wisdom. We also see it in Job 28:28, Psalm 111:10 and in Proverbs 1:7.
As a child, I always wondered why I was supposed to be afraid of this man [God] who loved me no matter what and sent His son to die on the cross for me. It was a little confusing. Now, I understand that there are two sides to fear (healthy and unhealthy). Fear can either be “a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, or pain” or it can be a “profound reverence and awe especially toward God”. Fear doesn’t always mean run and hide because you did something wrong or something bad is going to happen. Truly, it’s only those who don’t know God who will fear the most.
As my relationship with God has grown, I have come to understand the other side of fear. The healthy side. It’s like when we buy insurance for our healthcare, lives, homes and our cars. Hopefully, we don’t walk around waiting for everything to go wrong, but we understand bad things can happen. So, we buy insurance, we don’t leave Christmas tree lights plugged in unattended, we lock our doors and follow the laws put in place to protect us. We do what we can to prevent and be prepared if the worst should happen.
A healthy fear keeps you alert and motivated. When we know God by reading His word and trusting in Him, our fear isn’t one of cowering, but of confidence. It enables us to praise Him (Psalm 22:23), to rest in His peace and security (Psalm 112:7-8), and to have His many great blessings and benefits (Psalms 103: 13-17).
When I reflect on my fear of God, this is what comes to mind.
It’s not fear of Him, but fear of living life without Him that grows knowledge and wisdom. It’s the fear of not following His ways because that leads to chaos and destruction. It’s the fear of choosing a direction or making a decision, without seeking God’s wisdom, that can lead to delayed blessings and answers to prayer.
Let’s be honest, this world is cRaZy! I don’t want to be a fool and try to live without God in this world. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and discipline. Proverbs 1:7
How about you?