But a couple of months ago, in his Sunday morning sermon, my pastor reminded us that there are far more serious consequences to being a fool.
The book of Proverbs has much to say about fools.
“A fool's lips walk into a fight, and his mouth invites a beating” (Proverbs 18:6).
“The one who conceals hatred has lying lips, and whoever utters slander is a fool” (Proverbs 10:18).
“Like a dog that returns to his vomit is a fool who repeats his folly” (Proverbs 26:11).
A sobering picture for sure.
However, most of the proverbs center around a fool not listening to advice, and the very heart of the matter is Proverbs 1:7: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
The sermon centered on the book of Naham, but the story was an extenuation of the book of Jonah. In Jonah, the Ninevites (Assyrians) repented of their evil ways and God relented in his destruction of them. But one hundred years later by the time Naham arrived, they were back to their old ways, and now God’s message to them was one of destruction––total destruction. Let it be known that the Assyrian culture no longer exists.
The pastor went on to say that we live in a culture that is self-centered. A culture that caters to the individual, allowing each to redefine right and wrong in order to meet his or her own wants and desires, believing that if each of us can just get what we want, despite it being contrary to God’s instruction, then we will finally be satisfied.
But to believe so is foolish, and, if the Assyrians have taught us anything, will only lead to destruction. To not fear the Lord is foolish. To believe there will be no consequences is arrogance. And the consequences are dire, both in the short term and the eternal.
Let’s not be a fool.