The Characteristics of a Fool (Part I)

The theme of foolishness is woven into the stories of the Bible presenting us with insights into the nature of folly and its consequences. Often, our encounters with foolishness in the world around us might shape our perceptions, but it’s in the Word of God that we find a profound understanding of what it truly means to be foolish. Let’s delve into some key scriptures that illuminate the characteristics of a fool and guide us towards wisdom.

Despises wisdom

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7

We are called to have wisdom and knowledge. However, fools despise wisdom and instruction. When God directs a person to do something that a man despises, one is already on a dangerous path. This doesn’t mean that a fool doesn’t talk about his/her problems, but you will not see them looking into scripture to apply it to their situation. They are looking for an easy way out without much work on their part. They may just share their issues with people to feel better or to find a counsel that they want to hear.

A fool rejects the foundation of wisdom and instruction. In their arrogance and pride, they scorn wisdom and instruction. They trust in their own understanding, blind to the folly of their ways. Their path is marked by stumbling blocks and pitfalls, for they have forsaken the source of true knowledge.

Easily enticed

With her enticing speech she caused him to yield,
With her flattering lips she seduced him.
Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter,
Or as a fool to the correction of the stocks, Till an arrow struck his liver.
As a bird hastens to the snare, He did not know it would cost his life. Proverbs 7:21-23

A foolish person can be easily flattered because, generally, they have a high view of themselves. They are hungry and thirsty for the flattery and enticing words that tickle their ears. Typically, these individuals are easily enamored and excited by new people and can be impulsive about decisions. They can also be the ones who jump on any bandwagon of Christian success without assessing the soundness of the doctrine or the character of the leader.

Slander comes easy

Whoever hides hatred has lying lips, And whoever spreads slander is a fool. Proverbs  10:18

A foolish person has no problem gossiping and back-biting when they are upset . The other person’s reputation is of no importance. This moment and how the person feels becomes more significant than anything else. If you are on the other side of this and you are hearing someone being slandered, you should be wary of this person. Just as they slandered someone to you, someday you may be the target of their slander. If it doesn’t line up with how God tells us to interact with people, then it’s wrong in every situation.

How are these scriptures illuminate the the folly of fouls? What do you plan to do to refrain from these characteristics?

Image by Raquel Candia from Pixabay

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