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How to Apply God's Unconventional Wisdom

What matters the most: You know there is trouble ahead when someone won’t sit down with you face-to-face and meet with you. Being open requires an exchange face-to-face. Evasion leads nowhere good.

Whoever winks the eye causes trouble, and a babbling fool will come to ruin.

English Standard Version. (2016). (Proverbs 10:10). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

Worth noting: A wink was apparently some kind of signal used by dishonest people. Winking maliciously with one’s cohorts suggests sinful intentions. No wonder this leads to grief on the part of the victims of their evil plans, or the victim’s loved ones. Yet a talkative fool will himself eventually get into trouble.

In Proverbs, ’ewiyl (fool) refers to one who is morally deficient from the standpoint of being able to make reasoned moral judgments. He willfully refuses to make moral choices, choosing neither good nor rejecting evil.

Lets did deeper: The fool arrogantly refuses to receive moral instruction and to learn from his mistakes. The fool is characterized by foolishness (’iwwelet), an internal moral corruption that renders the fool impotent to make reasonable moral judgments in life. While he is young, there is hope that a youth can be separated from his foolishness, but later in life the fool is irrevocably marked by his folly. His moral deficiency manifests itself in matters of speech, morality, discipline, religion, and daily life. He speaks either the wrong thing or at the wrong time, and he is quick to show his anger and to refuse resolution.

The following is a partial list of some characteristics of a fool from the book of Proverbs:

  • A fool hates knowledge (1:22)
  • Takes no pleasure in understanding (18:2)
  • Enjoys wicked schemes (Proverbs 10:23)
  • Proclaims folly (Proverbs 12:23)
  • Spurns a parent’s discipline (15:5)
  • Speaks perversity (19:1)
  • Is quick-tempered (12:16)
  • Gets himself in trouble with his proud speech (14:3)
  • Mocks at sin (14:9)
  • Is deceitful (14:8)
  • Despises his mother (15:20)
  • A foolish child brings grief to his or her parents (17:25; 19:13)
  • A foolish man commits sexual immorality (6:32; 7:7–12)
  • A foolish woman tears down her own house (14:1)
  • The ultimate description of a fool is one who “says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’
  • They are corrupt, and their ways are vile; there is no one who does good” (Psalm 14:1; 53:1).