The Beginning of Knowledge

October 03, 2016

Knowledge. Wisdom. Understanding.

Our culture is obsessed with it all: knowing it all.

Whether in obtaining knowledge through education, receiving wisdom through some kind of enlightenment, or praying for understanding of situations: the Millennial generation just wants to know.

Everything. All things. We simply want to know.

We place priority on going to school, going back to school, being the best we can be, being skillful, “studying to show ourselves approved unto God” (II Timothy 2:15) and all of that. Which is perfectly acceptable and good!

But the underlying question for those of us who continually look for knowledge, wisdom, and understanding is WHY? Why do we seek knowing? Why do we want to be in the know? Is it to better ourselves for the Kingdom? Is it to have better career options? Is it to impress our peers? Is it because we think we will attain a certain status when we are increased with awareness and expertise?

Whatever the reasons our passion for knowing things, the fact is this: The beginning of knowledge is fearing the Lord. The beginning of true wisdom is following the commandments of Jesus and living an intentional life.

The proverbs of Solomon, son of David, king of Israel:
To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight,
to receive instruction in wise dealing,
in righteousness, justice, and equity;
to give prudence to the simple,
knowledge and discretion to the youth —
Let the wise hear and increase in learning,
and the one who understands obtain guidance,
to understand a proverb and a saying,
the words of the wise and their riddles.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge;
fools despise wisdom and instruction.
{Proverbs 1:1-7, ESV}

We know that in II Kings 3 the Lord asked Solomon what should be given to him in exchange for his faithfulness to God, and Solomon asked for “an understanding mind to govern the people of God, to discern between good and evil.” So because Solomon had actual experience in this little process — knowing that he had feared the Lord and been granted wisdom because of it, lets me know that it would be a good idea to take heed of Solomon’s proverb. It gives me faith to believe that that “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.”

The amount of knowledge we receive from high school classes, college classes, and graduate classes will not equal to the kind of wisdom we will receive from fearing the Lord. No matter how many self-help books we read, no matter how many devotionals or Bible studies we attend, we will not receive wisdom to discern righteousness from unrighteousness, justice from injustice, equity from inequity.

To despise the fear of the Lord is to despise wisdom; to push away the discernment of Jesus is to push away instruction and His chastening.

Do you thirst for knowledge? Do you hunger for wisdom? Then, my darling, fear the Lord. In all things. And He WILL grant you knowledge. Perhaps not in worldly wisdom and futuristic sightings. But in discernment of the Holy Ghost, in trusting Him, in believing in Him, in giving you the strength to follow His will in all things.

The beginning of knowledge is fearing the Lord, it is being intentional in your pursuit of a relationship with Him and loving Him wholly, completely, fully.