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Church sign: The fear of the lord is the beginning of knowledgeMeditation 974
The Beginning of Knowledge

by: JT

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The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge says the sign at a nearby church. Can that be true?

"Fear of the Lord" is not knowledge, it is faith.

Knowledge, rather, comes out of questioning concepts such as fear of the Lord, perhaps comparing that concept with fear of the bogeyman. As Wikipedia informs us, the bogeyman is an amorphous imaginary being used by adults to frighten children into compliant behaviour. But not to frighten them into knowledge - at least until they learn the bogeyman is not real, and then they have some knowledge.

If we take the trouble to check the actual wording on the sign with the reference Proverbs 1:7, we find that the complete passage is not quoted.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

This is interesting because previously this same church sign has been used to promote seminars in End Times prophesy, and in Creationism vs .science. That's not instruction; it is indoctrination. And no wisdom comes out of such indoctrination, just unwarranted faith in nonsense.

And of course creationists are known to reject and despise instruction in established science - science which is indeed knowledge and real knowledge can lead to wisdom. Fools do indeed despise wisdom and instruction.

Thus the second part of the proverb which the church chose not to include on the sign can be regarded as true. But fear of the Lord has nothing to do with it. Knowledge only comes when you take the step beyond fear.