“For the waywardness of the simpletons will kill them, and the careless ease of fools will destroy them. But the one who listens to me will live in security, and will be at ease from the dread of harm.” – Proverbs 1:32-33
“For who among men knows the things of a man except the man’s spirit within him? So too, no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things that are freely given to us by God. And we speak about these things, not with words taught us by human wisdom, but with those taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual things to spiritual people. The unbeliever does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him. And he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The one who is spiritual discerns all things, yet he himself is understood by no one. For who has known the mind of the Lord, so as to advise him? But we have the mind of Christ.” -1 Corinthians 2:11-16
In this section of the book of Proverbs there are often two groups of people referred to; a). The simpletons, and b). The wise. Who are these people?
Previously in Proverbs 1, it is asserted by Solomon that “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom.” In referring to ‘wisdom’ in the proverbs with personification also, he alludes to this idea; Christ is wisdom, and the fear and love of Christ is the only way in which we have true wisdom and come to knowledge of the Gospel. So then, those that have the fear of the Lord (faith in Christ) are then referred to as the wise whom the Lord will not destroy, those whom should not fear harm for their Father watches over them.
Paul then further argues this philosophical and theological point by showing that the wisdom of man is foolish to God, and the Lord saves those who are foolish by wordly standards. He then argues, in like manner to Solomon, that faith in Christ and His Gospel is the beginning of true, or Godly wisdom. But how do we obtain this wisdom if we cannot obtain the fear of the Lord on our own? The Lord causes the hearts of sinners to trust in Him alone, thus making the simple of the world, the poor and the sick, ‘wiser’ than the philosophers, scribes, etc. He also proves in the book of Proverbs as well as in the New Testament that the simpletons reffered to in the Proverb are those whose feet are quick to shed blood, whose hands are continually ready to steal. Those who do not fear the Lord, the Lord promises that He will repay according to their works. He argues that their own possessions slay them, and much more they will be further punished.
So all that we can do in this is trust the Spirit of Christ that is in us to guide us in Godly wisdom, and thank the God of grace and justice that He redeemed us whenever, no matter how ‘wise’ we thought we were, in truth we were simpletons. The Lord can save any man, regardless of his sin, and guide him in true Godly wisdom thanks to the truth of the perfect life, atoning death, and glorious resurrection of Christ whom we are united to.
Soli Deo Gloria