Verse of the Day Devotion: Psalm 111:10
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments; His praise endures forever.” – Psalm 111:10
Our focus verse, written by an unknown author, has incredible wisdom in the words it says. The writer starts with the truth that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Being that this was written to the Jewish nation, I will assume they know God exists. Fear in this context refers to honor and reverence. If we know that God is infinite in His power, His love and everything else, then honoring and reverencing Him is wise. If we believe He is who He says He is, then we should do all we can not to offend Him. To know He exists and not to fear Him as described above is not wise, but incredibly foolish. In fact, I would go as far as to say that not fearing and honoring the infinite God is the beginning of foolishness.
Many people who believe God exists will give the honor due their bosses, Pastors, government officials, friends and family, but not to the creator of all things who brought salvation to them through His death on the cross. They will do what their bosses say, because they want to get paid, but they will not do what God says. They will obey government authorities because they do not wish to be arrested, but they will not strive to obey God. After all He did for them, and having accepted His work on the cross, they do not consider it as important as all the other areas of their lives. This is incredibly sad for this is where wisdom starts. According to the writer of this verse, the foundation and origin of wisdom. There really is not true wisdom if we do not recognize the being, perfections and the claims of our Almighty God. Albert Barnes in his commentary on the Psalms puts it this way. “The highest wisdom – the loftiest endowment of man – is that he may know and honor God. This, in capability, makes him wise above the brute creation; this, in exercise, makes a man wiser than another; this, when it springs up in the soul, makes a man wiser than he was before.’
The writer goes on to say that a person with good understanding will do and obey God’s commandments. The Hebrew phrase for this essentially says, ‘Do the things connected with the fear of the Lord, to obey God.’ If we really understand who God is, what He has done for us, what He does to help us in our lives here, and what He has prepared for us for all eternity, how can we not obey Him? And for the same reasons, how can we not praise Him? God never changes, so the foundation of our praise for all eternity is who He is, and that will never change either.
Let us always honor and reverence Him no matter what happens, for God knows all things and causes and allows things to happen for our good. “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28. Let us trust Him and fear Him. For there is no greater wisdom than this.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.