We have said before that one of the main senses in which the Old Testament, and particularly the Book of Proverbs, uses the word “fool” is in reference to someone who is an unbeliever. Other definitions include one who acts unwisely or imprudently, and (our favorite) someone who is incorrigible – which often goes with the unbeliever. It is with these facts in mind that we now turn to the 14th verse of Proverbs 15:
The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge,
but the mouths of fools feed on folly
By definition, the one who has understanding has already begun to acquire some measure of wisdom (knowledge). And as Solomon has constantly drove home the point, beginning in Proverbs 1:7, “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.” So having gained wisdom, what does the person who fears the Lord continue to do? He continues to seek knowledge. And why is that? It is because he has learned for himself what is told to us in Proverbs 2:10-12:
…for wisdom will come into your heart,
and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;
discretion will watch over you,
understanding will guard you,
delivering you from the way of evil
But as verse 14 also says, “the mouths of fools feed on folly.” The fool, whose mind is “set on the flesh”, having rejected God – having become hostile to God, and so cannot submit to God’s law (Roman’s 8:7), therefore must feed on folly in order to validate in his own mind that rejection. He will swallow any folly (or even delusion) that feeds that ignorance – from Darwinism to false religions, or even ancient alien ancestors! Anything, in his own mind, is better to the fool than bowing to the authority of the Almighty God.
Read or listen to audio of ESV version of this selection from this link.
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers
Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog. All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility. When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com. For questions and help, please see the “FAQ” and “Summaries” pages there.
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