Summary: Everyone knows how to be a fool, but God’s Word instructs us how to avoid foolishness.
OVERCOMING THE FOUR “F”s: FOOLISHNESS
Anyone ever have an embarrassing moment . . . or two . . . or three . . .? Let me tell you, I am an expert on being a fool. Like everyone else, I have had my share of embarrassing moments.
Left-handed wood cutter
Surfing with a 10-foot Shark
Riding the Calvary
and on and on…. But better to get on and hear the Word of God than the stories of Todd!
Yes, I have been a fool, some might even say I still am. We throw that word around so freely and even flippantly, but it truly is a very serious thing. A fool is: “a person who acts unwisely or imprudently, a stupid person, a jester/clown. One who acts in a joking, teasing way.” A spiritual fool is one who can look at all the evidence, scriptural and otherwise, concerning their need for God, His salvation, and/or His direction for their life, and yet chooses to ignore it. This morning we will use God’s Word to explore the realms of fools and learn (1) the problem of foolishness, (2) the alternative, and (3) how and when it IS good to “appear the fool.”’
I.DON’T BE A FOOL . . .
A. Characteristics Of A Fool
But, WHO is a fool? How do we know? Is it you? Is it me? Let us look at characteristics of a fool, as taught in the Bible. While doing so, look inside and see how you (not your neighbor, friend, or spouse) measure up! (I’m going to go through these quickly, your job is to look at each one and honest assess yourself in light of it)
1. Ignores God (Ps. 14:1)
2. Does not understand God’s Greatness (Ps. 92:5-6)
3. Hates Knowledge (Pr. 1:22)
4. Complacent (Pr. 1:32)
5. Easily Led Astray (Pr. 7:22)
6. Disobedient (Pr. 10:8)
7. Slanderous (Pr. 10:18)
8. Delights in Evil (Pr. 10:23)
9. Causes Discord in The Home (Pr. 11:29)
10. Always Believes They Are Right (Pr. 12:15; 26:12)
11. Ill-Tempered (Pr. 14:16-17)
12. Refuses Instruction or Correction (Pr. 15:5; 17:10)
13. A Loose Tongue (Pr. 17:28; 29:11)
14. Perverse Lips (Pr. 19:1)
15. Quarrelsome (Pr. 20:3)
16. Untrustworthy (Pr. 26:6)
17. Repeats Mistakes (Pr. 26:11)
18. Driven By Emotions (Pr. 28:26)
19. Lazy (Ecc. 4:5)
20. Wastes Resources (Pr. 21:20)
(By the way, a great way not to waste resources is to invest in our capital campaign)
21. Hears, But Does Not Do (Mt. 7:26)
22. Does Not Prepare For Jesus (Mt. 25:3)
23. Self-Righteous (Mt. 23)
How do you measure up? If any ONE of these traits is true of you, then you have at least a little bit of fool in you. If several or more of these traits are regularly true of you, then you are – in the eyes of the Bible and the LORD – a full-fledged fool in need of a wake-up call!
B. The Price Of Foolishness
Make no mistake, there is a price for our foolishness and the price for spiritual foolishness (also known as sin) is very steep indeed!
1. No Fear of the LORD = Destruction (Pr. 1:29-33)
2. Caught In A Fatal Trap (Pr. 5:21-23)
3. Led Astray (Pr. 10:17)
4. Turns From God (Pr. 19:1-3)
5. Ruins Family (Pr. 19:13a)
6. Starts Quarrels – lives from quarrel to quarrel (Pr. 20:3)
7. No Legacy, No Eternal Perspective (Ps. 49:10)
II. BE WISE,
If we are to avoid being the fool, we must instead seek to be wise.
A.The Need For Wisdom From God
The problem, and where we often fail, is the reality that our own purported wisdom is NOT sufficient! Remember, depending on oneself, believing you’re always right, and refusing counsel are all marks of the fool! Instead, if we desire genuine wisdom, we must get it from the only perfect and complete source: God Himself as revealed by His Word and elucidated by His Holy Spirit!!!
Job 28:12-13; 23-28
Pr. 14:12; 26:12
B.The Rewards of Wisdom
Wisdom from God is a precious treasure . . .
It is this kind of knowledge and wisdom that runs a country
Leads to greatness
Results in power & influence
C.Characteristics Of A Wise Person
1.Loves to learn & improve in any way (Pr. 9:8b-9)
2.Continually seeks for more wisdom from God (Pr. 18:15)
3.Passionately thirsts after God – even with his/her mind! (Mk. 12:29-30)
III. EVEN WHILE APPEARING FOOLISH FOR CHRIST
Now that we have quite thoroughly (if not exhaustively) examined why it is so important that we reject foolishness for God’s wisdom, it is important that we distinguish between what is genuine foolishness before God and what simply appears foolish to the world. Confused yet? Stay with me. Just like most anybody you talk to will have at least a slightly (and in some cases significantly) different view of what is or is not “modest,” so everyone seems to have their own ideas about what is or is not foolish. For example, who’s the real fool: the evolutionist or the creationist? Depending on who you ask, you’ll get very different responses (and emotions).