What will happen when one refuses to live by the fear of the Lord and heed His wisdom? “You will reap what you sow,” (Gal 6:7). There is no room for laying the blame anywhere else; note where responsibility lay in 1:24-25. “Wisdom” here stands for God, and remember it is founded on flows from the fear of the Lord (1:7). To reject wisdom is to reject God—always a dangerous thing with definite consequences. Those who reject God (vv. 26-27) will make a mess out of life and reap accordingly. Once the true nature of the terrible consequences begin to be seen there then may be the desire to do right to avoid those consequences, but that kind of “repentance” is sorrowful only for the consequences, not their root cause (vv. 28-30). They are getting what they deserve, harvesting what they cultivated, reaping what they’ve sown (v. 31; cf. 5:22-23; 22:8; Gal 6:7). Verses 33-33 sum up this first “talk” about living by the fear or the Lord.
- Where does sin always lead? Note also James 1:14-15.
- What is the fear of the Lord? What is wisdom?
- What path are you on? You can see the character of your path not only by your character but the character of your fellow travelers. What grace the Lord has shown by detailing the end of the fool—the one who despises rather than fears the Lord. God thus warns the simple so they will gain prudence, knowledge, and discretion (1:4).
- Usually it takes time for a harvest to come; that seeming delay from initial planting and cultivation can lull you into a state of false security. Once the crops finally start to appear you may then become fearful and regretful, but it is too late—the harvest has arrived and you will reap what you have sown. Who are you listening to? (v. 33; note vv. 2, 5, 6, 8, 20-21, 23-25)