The Beginning Of Wisdom

Psalm 111 (NLT)

Praise the Lord!

I will thank the Lord with all my heart
as I meet with his godly people.
How amazing are the deeds of the Lord!
All who delight in him should ponder them.
Everything he does reveals his glory and majesty.
His righteousness never fails.
He causes us to remember his wonderful works.
How gracious and merciful is our Lord!
He gives food to those who fear him;
he always remembers his covenant.
He has shown his great power to his people
by giving them the lands of other nations.
All he does is just and good,
and all his commandments are trustworthy.
They are forever true,
to be obeyed faithfully and with integrity.
He has paid a full ransom for his people.
He has guaranteed his covenant with them forever.
What a holy, awe-inspiring name he has!
10 Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true wisdom.
All who obey his commandments will grow in wisdom.

Praise him forever! – Psalm 111 (NLT)

Psalm 111 is a psalm of praise to the Lord that ends with a familiar verse telling us that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.  So many people think that they’re so smart and so wise, but they have no fear or respect for God.  The Hebrew word for “fear” means terror, respect or worship.  Reverence/respect is what is in mind here in Psalm 111.  There are two key aspects to respecting God that are found in this psalm.  First, the psalmist describes the deeds and works of the Lord.  Verses 2-7 speaks of the wonderful works of the Lord.  The second aspect of respect refers to the commandments of the Lord (verses 7-8).  If we are going to respect God, we must respect His commands and His Word.  Jesus said that if His followers love Him, they will obey His commandments (John 14:15).  Respect and obedience are intertwined.  If I do not fear the Lord, I will not obey Him.  I will not care what He says in His Word.  I will not do what He says.  But that is foolishness!  That is like buying a new yet unfamiliar smartphone.  If I get a new phone, but I don’t read the instruction manual and do what it says, I am a fool!  I will not be able to enjoy and use the features of the phone without reading the instruction manual.  Or if I go on vacation to an unfamiliar part of the country and I don’t read or follow the map, I will get lost and I am a fool!  So it goes with life.  God has given us a wonderful instruction manual and map in His Word to get to where we really want to be, our Heavenly home.  If I do not read and obey the manual or read and follow the map, I am a fool.  The wise man is the one who reads and follows the instructions that God has given in the Bible.  May we have a reverent fear and respect of the Lord today to read His Word and do what it says.
PRAYER: Lord God, I need more fear of You in my life. I sometimes take You for granted. Help me to honor You with my life today in the things that I say, think and do. Amen.

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