Thursday, October 22, 2009

Hating Evil Without the Rules

Proverbs 16:6 tells us that by the fear of the Lord, one departs from evil. Proverbs 8:13 sheds more light on this: " The fear of the LORD is to hate evil;"

Some sincere Christians have lists of man-made rules that they follow. They believe these lists are necessary, because they won't know how to live holy lives without them. Furthermore, they believe that obeying these lists will keep them out of situations that will bring them into sin. Yet, these groups have as many scandals in their leadership as other groups. One such group, the Ruckmanites, have more scandals than most other Christian groups.

The fear of the Lord does for Christians what man-made rules fail to do. The lists don't make you hate evil (many people under the authority of those lists don't want to obey them, but their church makes them). The fear of the Lord, on the other hand, makes you hate evil and makes you depart from it.

Monday, October 19, 2009

We have seen that reading the Bible and getting understanding produce holiness. There are other things as well.

Proverbs 16:6 tells us "And by the fear of the LORD one departs from evil." Some commentaries and study Bibles are quick to state that "the fear of the Lord" refers to "reverential awe." But when I looked up the Hebrew and Greek words, I found that the words translated "fear" mean "fear."

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; it is a springboard from which many other strengths can eventually grow. An interesting Bible study would be to take a colored marker, and the next time you go through the Bible, mark every time the phrase "fear of the Lord" appears. God pours out many blessings on a Christian who fears the Lord. But there are no blessings promised to those who obey a list of man-made rules.