What is knowledge? Let’s look at the actual definition:
[nol-ij] Show IPA
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:
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:
[feer] Show IPA
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:
http://sp.dictionary.com/dictstatic/d/g/speaker.swf [wiz-duhm] Show IPA
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.
sayings or teachings; precepts.
Discipline, a word that scares most kids. Here is the definition, just to be clear:
[dis-uh-plin] Show IPA noun, verb, -plined, -plin·ing.
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.