The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
The wise man is one who does not see himself as wise. He realizes that he has much to learn.
Isn’t it interesting that many of those whom we view as the wisest men this world has seen were not those who claimed to have all of the answers, but rather those who admitted they had a lot of questions about life? Socrates, Montaigne, Solomon, Aristotle, Locke, Epicurus — all of them had more questions than they had answers.
A lot of people who go to college have the idea that they are going to learn a lot. And they will. They will learn a lot more than they already know.
The reality is, however, they will only become acquainted with a sliver of the world’s knowledge.
In fact, the thing education will force you to ultimately realize is that what you do know is simply a raindrop compared to the water in all the oceans of the world put together. The knowledge that each of us gains individually is like a single grain of sand compared to all the sand on the oceans’ shores.
This realization ought to humble us. It ought to give us a respect and reverence for the God who is omniscient — the God who knows everything. This fear of God is called “the beginning of knowledge.”
Francis Chan said:
The wise man comes to God without saying a word and stands in awe of Him.
You cannot know anything unless you know that you will never know everything.
Only fools act as know-it-alls. Only fools think they cannot benefit from more knowledge and wisdom. Consequently, these people never gain knowledge or wisdom. They don’t allow themselves to be awed by the vast amount of what they do not know — or by the God who knows all there is to know.
Such a person blocks himself from learning from God and learning from others. And the Bible labels that person a fool.
His ignorance is his own fault.