Saturday, January 28, 2012

Disecting One Little Sentence

Psalm 111:10 says “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise.”

Fearing the LORD means respecting His law, His will, everything about Him. The word fear in the original Hebrew is “yir’ah” which can mean respect, reverence, or piety. The fear we should have is the fear that we would disrespect or offend Him. This is not a fear as in “terror” or “dread”. This is reverence which should go hand in glove with love, worship, and adoration.

The name of the LORD, “Yahweh” or “Jehovah”, is rendered in the translation with the use of small capital letters. Most people don’t even notice this in their Bibles. There is Lord (master) and there is LORD (Yahweh). There is no doubt here that the psalmist is referring to the one true God.

Fear (reverence), therefore, is the beginning, or foundation, of wisdom. If we do not recognize that God is God then we cannot know or honor Him. So, once we have the beginning of wisdom how do we get the rest of it? What does it say in the second half of the verse? We get that “good understanding” by following his precepts, that is, by studying the Bible, learning the Word, and putting it into practice.

Wise words, huh? Eternal praise to God.