Quarreling

Some would say that quarreling is human nature.  And, to an extent, I agree.  Look around you.  Look at the anger you see, the bitterness. Look at young children with their siblings.  Siblings always quarrel, at some point.  Some more than others.  Part of our path to maturity is to learn how to handle quarrels and to not quarrel.

Proverbs 20:3

3 Avoiding a fight is a mark of honor;
only fools insist on quarreling.

I think that is pretty clear, don’t you?   Just to add to it, here is the information from my devotional:

A person who is truly confident of his or her strength does not need to parade it. A truly brave person does not look for chances to prove it. A resourceful woman can find a way out of a fight. A man of endurance will avoid retaliating. Foolish people find it impossible to avoid strife. Men and women of character can. What kind of person are you?

Gets you thinking, doesn’t it?

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Knowledge

What is knowledge?  Let’s look at the actual definition:

knowl·edge

[nol-ij]  Show IPA

noun

1. acquaintance with facts, truths, or principles, as from study or investigation; general erudition: knowledge of many things.
2. familiarity or conversance, as with a particular subject orbranch of learning: A knowledge of accounting was necessary for the job.
3. acquaintance or familiarity gained by sight, experience, or report: a knowledge of human nature.
4. the fact or state of knowing;  the perception of fact or truth; clear and certain mental apprehension.
5. awareness, as of a fact or circumstance: He had knowledge of her good fortune.

Now, people can be rather knowledgeable about different subjects.  For example, my big sister is extremely knowledgeable about working with high school students and counseling them.  She is the best I’ve ever seen, even better than my mom was, but don’t tell mom that. 😉  I don’t have that type of knowledge, would never even try to pretend to have it.  We aren’t made to know everything.  So, why would we pretend to know everything.

This evening, I came across the following verse:

Proverbs 1:7

7 Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true knowledge,
but fools despise wisdom and discipline.

I’ve already defined fear, but here it is again:

fear

[feer]  Show IPA

noun

4. reverential awe, especially toward God: the fear of God. Synonyms: awe, respect, reverence, veneration.

So, this verse is expressing to us that a respect of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge.  This can be translated to meaning that if you have that reverential awe, that respect for God, you already have the basis, foundation, to obtain true knowledge.  But fools despise wisdom and discipline.

Wisdom is different than knowledge.  The definition of wisdom is:

wis·dom

  http://sp.dictionary.com/dictstatic/d/g/speaker.swf [wiz-duhm]  Show IPA

noun

1. the quality or state of being wise;  knowledge of what is true or right coupled with just judgment as to action; sagacity, discernment, or insight.
2. scholarly knowledge or learning: the wisdom of the schools.
3. wise  sayings or teachings; precepts.
4. a wise  act or saying.
5. ( initial capital letter ) Douay Bible . Wisdom of Solomon.

Discipline, a word that scares most kids.  Here is the definition, just to be clear:

dis·ci·pline

[dis-uh-plin]  Show IPA noun, verb, -plined, -plin·ing.

noun

1. training to act in accordance with rules; drill: military discipline.
2. activity, exercise, or a regimen that develops or improves a skill; training: A daily stint at the typewriter is excellentdiscipline for a writer.
3. punishment inflicted by way of correction and training.
4. the rigor or training effect of experience, adversity, etc.: the harsh discipline of poverty.
5. behavior in accord with rules of conduct; behavior and order maintained by training and control: good discipline in an army.

So, fools despise wisdom and discipline.  I won’t address the wisdom portion except to say that there are different levels of wisdom and I’ve met fools that are also wise.  Let’s look at the discipline portion though.  One of the things that I think about with discipline, is an Olympic athlete.  To be the best, you have to be disciplined.  You have to have control of what you are doing.  Without that discipline, you lose focus, and could lose at whatever endeavor you were working.  So, why would fools despise discipline?  Because they don’t want to give up their wrongdoing.  They are having too much fun doing what they want that they don’t see the prize at the end.  They aren’t keeping focus.  And they don’t care to keep focus because they are having too much fun doing what is wrong.

This is why we must focus, keep disciplined, and thereby, gain knowledge, which increases our wisdom.