The Foundation of Wisdom (1 of 8) by Jonathan McLeod

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The Foundation of Wisdom (1 of 8)
Series: Wise Steps
Jonathan McLeod
Proverbs 1:7

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction (Prov. 1:7).


Proverbs is a book about wisdom. Solomon is identified as he author (1:1; 10:1). There is biblical evidence for his interest in proverbs: ''Solomon's wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all the people of the east and all the wisdom of Egypt…. He also spoke 3,000 proverbs, and his songs were 1,005'' (1 Kings 4:30, 32). Some of Solomon's proverbs were copied by Hezekiah's scribes (25:1). Agur (30:1) and Lemuel (31:1) also authored some of the proverbs.

[Read Proverbs 1:1-7.]


The book of Proverbs is sort of like a strategy guide for life. [Show a video game strategy guide.] Of course, life is more difficult than a video game. But the book of Proverbs can help us make wise life decisions.


What is wisdom? There is a difference between having knowledge and having wisdom. There are many smart people who are also very foolish. In the age of the internet, knowledge is abundant, but wisdom is rare.

Wisdom is the ability to make GOOD DECISIONS based on knowledge.

It could be said that wisdom is skillful living. The book of James is often call the NT's wisdom book. James 1:22 says, ''Be doers of the word, and not hearers only.'' Having knowledge (hear-ing) without also having wisdom (doing) is not living skillfully.


Proverbs 1:7 says, ''The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge.'' Knowledge and wis-dom are closely connected in Proverbs. We pursue knowledge so that we can have wisdom. Psalm 111:10 says, ''The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom.''

Bruce Waltke writes that the ''fear of the LORD'' is ''the key to Proverbs.'' What is ''the fear of the LORD''? It's not being afraid of God. The fear of the LORD has been described as ''wor-shipping submission,'' ''r ...

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