The Word of God emphatically states that there is no place for fools or foolishness.
Scripture makes it clear — in the book of Proverbs primarily, as well as in many other books — that we should avoid foolish behavior and foolish friends, for foolishness leads to faulty thinking, disastrous outcomes and ruination.
Most important, in the life of believers, foolish behavior should be overcome through the study of Scripture and by listening to and obeying the Holy Spirit’s quiet voice of correction when we go astray.
Often, we become so accustomed to our way of thinking, doing things and speaking that we don’t even recognize that our actions and responses are foolish and, as such, are sinful. This failure to recognize the problem points to the need to become increasingly sensitive to what the Bible says is foolish.
This week’s study, “Twelve Indicators of Foolishness in Office,” examines what God’s Word, particularly the book of Proverbs, says about fools and foolish behavior.
A qualifying note is important up front. A foolish person is not necessarily parallel to an unbeliever or a Christian. Some believers, in their spiritual immaturity, act foolishly more often than wisely. And many unbelievers live according to biblical precepts even though they have never bowed the knee to Christ’s lordship.
The Hebrew word for “fool” (kesil) basically means “a stupid fellow.” In the context of Proverbs, fools are those who reject the counsel of God, which makes their thinking unintelligent and their subsequent decisions poor.
Said another way, because fools reject God’s knowledge, they lack skill in making the right choices in life. As a result, they end up reaping what they’ve sown.
“The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 14:1). Even though Romans 1:19 states “that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them,” a fool suppresses and attempts to deny that intellectual understanding.
The study begins by defining biblical wisdom as stated by King Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived.
In Proverbs 1:20-33, Solomon wrote in part, “Wisdom shouts in the street, she lifts her voice in the square; at the head of the noisy streets she cries out; at the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings: ‘How long, O naive ones, will you love being simple-minded? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing and fools hate knowledge? Turn to my reproof, behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you.'”
Dire consequences come to those who reject wisdom and live foolishly. This study examines twelve indicators of foolishness that a believer should identify and correct. They include dishonoring parents, committing sexual sin, mouthing off, using profanity, rejecting knowledge, displaying anger, lacking humility, living a self-destructive life, and rejecting discipline and correction, among others.
The study provides ample information for deep introspection into negative attitudes and behaviors that beg correction. It asks the question: Are you self-absorbed — closed off to discerning God’s will in your life? The degree to which you are is the degree to which you are foolish.
Biblical insights are offered into how to develop an attitude of desire for God’s truth. The benefits of correction are immense. When you follow the scriptural remedies, you will gain discernment and skill throughout the course of your life.
I suggest you read this study carefully to see if you recognize any of these deadly signs in yourself. There may very well be an opportunity for character-building — increasing in Christ-likeness — a chance to see yourself through the lens of Scripture, and consequently the opportunity to work to jettison some of these negative traits and replace them with ones that are pleasing to God. Click here to read the full study.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.