“The [reverent] fear of the Lord [that is, worshiping Him and regarding Him as truly awesome] is the beginning and the preeminent part of wisdom [its starting point and its essence], And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding and spiritual insight” [Proverbs 9:10, AMP].
When God appeared to Solomon to ask what He desired, Solomon asked for wisdom because his father King David had taught him that “wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding” [Proverbs 4:7, KJV]. True to King David’s words, wisdom brought with her riches and fame, which Solomon could never have dreamed of.
However, along the way King Solomon forgot that “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever” [Psalm 111:10]. He lost this fear when he disobeyed God’s commandments by marrying women from other nations, and with that came the decline of the great King Solomon’s wisdom. At the end of his life, it is clear that many of the decisions he took were foolish and led to many problems not only in his life but in the nation of Israel for years to come.
Many of the troubles and problems that we see in our world today are because we as a society have lost our “fear of God”. When you hear the way some people even talk about God, it makes you shudder. God’s commandments have been deemed archaic and too restrictive. We have come to believe that our wisdom is wiser than God’s wisdom and hence indulge in all manner of activities and lifestyles to prove so. Yet, when we take a look around we see that indeed man’s wisdom is foolishness compared to God’s wisdom. God’s wisdom is higher than our wisdom and that is why the Christian walk is a walk of faith.
When you take God’s Word as it is and act accordingly, you are walking in wisdom; not man’s wisdom, but God’s wisdom. When God’s Word says do not be equally yoked with unbelievers and you let go of all emotions you have for an unbeliever lady or gentleman because the Bible has said so, that is wisdom. Or when you forgive that friend or relative that hurt you so deeply and reconcile with them, that is wisdom. It doesn’t make the path walked on easy, but the Bible assures us that “the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day” [Proverbs 4:18]. When we start having a reverence for God and see that indeed his commandments are not grievous, but are purposed to bring us to a path which shines unto the perfect day, many of our societies problems will change.
At the end of his life, King Solomon realized the folly of his ways and concluded that, “All has been heard; the end of the matter is: Fear God [revere and worship Him, knowing that He is] and keep His commandments, for this is the whole of man [the full, original purpose of his creation, the object of God’s providence, the root of character, the foundation of all happiness, the adjustment to all inharmonious circumstances and conditions under the sun] and the whole [duty] for every man” [Ecclesiates 12:13].