'The Fear of the Lord Is the Beginning of Knowledge'

The Book of Proverbs is filled with useful information and timeless life lessons. That's why I'm going to be going chapter by chapter in an effort to explore some of the key concepts in the book that I find most useful, helpful and intriguing. First and foremost, what I love most about Proverbs is that, after thousands of years, Solomon's advice still holds true.

That proves that a) it is solid guidance that is worthy of consideration and b) that human beings — at the most basic level — haven't changed all that much.

Perhaps the first truth worth noting comes in Proverbs 1:7, which reads, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction." Far too many people today reject this "beginning of knowledge," but that's clearly not a new problem; it's one that Solomon felt he needed to tackle centuries before Christ arrived on the scene.

Chapter one also has some lessons about choosing our friends and associates carefully — yet another part of the human experience that hasn't changed all that much.

In the end, you are who you spend your time with; that's the central lesson worth gleaning within the text.

Proverbs 1:7, 10-19 reads:

My son, if sinful men entice you, do not give in to them. If they say, “Come along with us; let’s lie in wait for innocent blood, let’s ambush some harmless soul; let’s swallow them alive, like the grave, and whole, like those who go down to the pit; we will get all sorts of valuable things and fill our houses with plunder; cast lots with us; we will all share the loot”— my son, do not go along with them, do not set foot on their paths; for their feet rush into evil, they are swift to shed blood.

How useless to spread a net where every bird can see it! These men lie in wait for their own blood; they ambush only themselves! Such are the paths of all who go after ill-gotten gain; it takes away the life of those who get it.

And there you have it. We'll dive into Proverbs 2 next.