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Herman Hoeksema | Jenison, Michigan
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Reformed Free Publishing Association
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Wisdom and Folly
MONDAY, APRIL 15, 2019
Posted by: Reformed Free Publishing Association | more..
450+ views | 30+ clicks
If wisdom in God is the application and adaptation of all things to the goal of his own glory, then wisdom in us is the application, use and, adaptation of all things to the goal of God’s glory.

That is why we read in Proverbs 1:7, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge” and in Proverbs 9:10, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” Without the fear of God, which is a godly reverence for him in which we avoid sin and seek his glory, we are, and will behave as, the greatest fools!

The book of Proverbs employs several words, which mean more or less the same thing. First, there is “wisdom” [chokmah] which we have explained. The word has the idea of skill or shrewdness. Second, there is “understanding” [beenah], which word has the idea of discernment, perception, consideration, or differentiation, which is the ability to distinguish between good and evil. Third, there is “prudence” [oremah], which word has the idea of sensibleness, slyness, or even subtlety. The book presents the wise, understanding, or prudent man as a good example. We ought to desire to be like the wise, understanding, or prudent man. That is because Jesus is the perfectly wise, understanding and prudent man.

On the other hand, there are words in the book of Proverbs, which describe the opposite of wisdom. First, there are at least three Hebrew words for “fool” or “folly.” Each of them has a slightly different shade of meaning: senseless, simpleton, stupid, dullard; devoid of moral or religious sensibility; sluggish, brutish, or spiritually stupid. Second, there is the word “simple,” which refers to a gullible or suggestible person.

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