These verses further develop the main theme of this talk (live life focused on God, not self) by teaching that only living a God-centered life brings peace and orderliness to life. One of your greatest enemies is yourself. “Do not be wise in your own eyes” (v. 7a) is another way of saying v. 5b (cf. 26:12; 28:11, 26; Rom 12:16). When you think you’re wise you’ll do things based exclusively on what you think. Egotism, conceit, pride, and smugness are the great enemies of true faith and wisdom. A fool is a know-it-all (12:15; Judg 17:6; 21:25). This is not saying don’t increase what you know! But don’t be your own compass. Remember that the “fear of the Lord” is a reverent belief in the God of the Bible, exclusively loving, obeying, and worshiping the One you will give an account to. Being wise isn’t just knowing things—it necessarily involves your moral and spiritual direction—your attitude and response to righteousness and wickedness. Separation from sin and to Christ and his righteousness is fundamental to wisdom and genuine spirituality—a God-centered life. When you trust—submit—to God, peacefulness and a well-ordered life follows (v. 8). This only makes sense—living according to the Creator of Life results in a good life.
- Note Prov 13:14, 19; 14:16, 27; 15:24; 16:6, 17
- Proverbs will cover subjects such as marriage, parents, children, what you say, work ethic, lust, immorality, anger, disagreements, and finances. What are some areas if your life that you know right now you tend to “be wise in your own eyes”?
- Why is it impossible to fear the Lord and continue in evil?
- Why is it when we’re feeling weak and empty we don’t believe and follow Christ and instead continue going our own way?