Proverbs 15: Wisdom Begins and Ends With Fear of the Lord
“The fear of the Lord is the instruction for Wisdom.” Proverbs 15:33
The book of Proverbs is a book of wisdom nuggets for the child of God. They are practical bits of wisdom that will guide and direct us in our every day lives. The wisdom found in Proverbs is that which comes from above; it is not earthly, natural, or demonic.
The apostle Peter teaches in 2 Peter 1:3 that God gives the believer everything they need for life and for godliness. Living and walking out these wisdom words will help the man of God live righteously and godly in this present age. Remember, Proverbs are not promises. They are guides for you and me. God, however, promised a life of suffering for His children. And if we will take these words of wisdom and continue in them, all the while looking to and relying on God, He will keep us on the straight and narrow path. No matter what comes your way, know you’re headed in the right direction.
“The eyes of the LORD are in every place, watching the evil and the good.” Proverbs 15:3
This Proverb, like most of them, looks at the eyes, lips, hands, and hearts of mankind. While the writer points out the eyes, lips, hands, and feet, we will do well to take notice that their actions spring from the heart. There is a contrast made with those whom fear the Lord, whom have a regenerate heart, with those whom do not fear the Lord, and those with an unregenerate heart. The ungodly, unregenerate man can walk in wisdom. I know several unsaved who are wiser than some saved men. However, their walk is a self-exalting and self-preserving walk. There is no fear of God before their eyes.
I am reminded of the words of Paul in Romans 6:12-13, “Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”
“The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, but the prayer of the upright is His delight.” Proverbs 15:8
Even the unrighteous can have a form of religion. Many fill the church buildings today who believe they are sacrificing their time and talents to the Lord but their heart is far from Him. They may appear to have a zeal for God, but it is not in accordance with knowledge. They really do not know God. Jesus says in Matthew 7:21, “Not everyone who says to Me, Lord Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father.” Those who do not know God will cry out, and they will say, "But I did this, and I did that." He will say, "Depart from Me; I never knew you” (Matthew 7:21-23). Notice the focus was on their work, not that of Christ Jesus.
Those who know Christ God pray to God with a confession of sin and unworthiness. They are thankful to God for His imputed righteousness and bless His name.
“Better is a little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and turmoil with it.” Proverbs 15:16
Poverty is not better than riches. However, if a man has little of worldly things, but he has the fear of the Lord in his heart, his little is a great treasure compared to the rich man who does not fear the Lord. The riches of this world bring turmoil with it but the riches of Christ bring peace and rest to the heart of the righteous.
“The LORD will tear down the house of the proud, but He will establish the boundary of the widow." Proverbs 15:25
Pride comes before a fall (Proverbs 16:18). Those proud of heart set themselves in places of honor. They even set themselves up in place of God. They do not receive instruction; they fight, quarrel, and oppress the righteous. They do not see themselves as helpless and in great need of the kindness and love of God. The proud set their feet on the broad rocky path...the way of destruction. But the Lord will defend and help the helpless...those who bow their knee before Him in humility and trust.
“The LORD is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous.” Proverbs 15:29
The Lord is omnipresent; He is everywhere at all times. His eyes are in every place. In respect to His help and favor, He is far from the wicked. The wicked are not in communion with God; He is far from them and keeps them at a distance. Nor, will He receive them on the last day.
Not so with the righteous. They draw near to God and He draws near to them. He hears their prayers and gives help in their time of need.
“The fear of the LORD is the instruction for wisdom, and before honor comes humility.” Proverbs 15:33
We began and will end our walk through Proverbs 15 with the fear of the Lord. Without Him we have nothing. I believe Proverbs 2:1-6 gives great council to the child of God. So I will end today with the words of Solomon:
My son, if you will receive my words
And treasure my commandments within you,
Make your ear attentive to wisdom,
Incline your heart to understanding;
For if you cry for discernment,
Lift your voice for understanding’
If you seek her as silver
And search for her as for hidden treasures;
Then you will discern the fear of the LORD
And discover the knowledge of God.
For the LORD gives wisdom;
From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.
Lisa Morris is a student of God’s Word, Bible study writer, and creator of Conforming To The Truth. She is wife to her high school sweetheart, Roy, and mom to three of the greatest kids ever! They make their home in good ole Rocky Top, Tennessee, the volunteer state! Go Vols! Lisa is passionate about defending the truth of God’s word so that He is high and lifted up.