“How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple?”

– Proverbs 1.22

The Love of a Fool

Fool - Mark Twain - Proverbs Devotional - Steven CuffleDavid would say, “Oh how I love your law! It is my meditation all the day” and “I hate the double-minded, but I love your law” and “I hate and abhor falsehood, but I love your law” throughout Psalm 119. It should be clear that David was enamored with God’s word; he loved to learn it and to use it. He was concerned with doing everything according to the way that God commanded, and he knew that “[God’s] commandment makes [him] wiser than [his] enemies”.

This was one of the defining aspects of David’s life; his great love for God’s commandments often guided him. David cannot claim to be perfect, but he can claim to be a follow of God. When David made mistakes, which he did just as or more often than we do, he allowed the word of God to correct his course. When the Scriptures condemned his course of action, he changed what he was doing to match God’s word.

Love for God Brings about Our Obedience

Jesus said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” Notice that obedience flows from love; it is our love that will cause to obey the things that Jesus asks us to do. Sometimes we get this backward and thing that love will spring forth from doing the right thing. “If I just do enough good,” we tell ourselves, “then I will learn to love the Lord like I should.” This is 100%, absolutely, positively incorrect. Jesus clearly says that right actions spring forth from our affection and love for him, not the other way around.

David didn’t love God because he repented and obeyed the law. David repented and obeyed the law BECAUSE of his great love for God. This drives home an important point: if we are disobedient it’s because there is a problem with our love. We sin because we love something else more than God.

Fools Love Being Foolish

“It’s easier to fool people than to convince that they have been fooled.”

– Mark Twain

Leaving foolishness behind takes work. Satan knows that he doesn’t have to convince us forever to be foolish; he only has to get us one time. Just like a hunter only needs to snare his pray once, if we fall into temptation it is difficult to climb out again. Paul said that sin “clings closely” and weighs us down; it is a struggle to live wisely and in a way that brings glory to God. If you are trying to live a godly life in Christ Jesus, then you will have to fight your entire life (cf 2 Tim 3.12).

However, fools have it easy in this regard. If you love being foolish you will not have to strain and fight against falling into temptation and away from God. You will not have to struggle to unchain yourself from the snares of sin. You will not have to shield yourself from the flaming darts of the evil one, since he won’t be throwing them at you. If simplicity and ease are what you’re seeking for here in this life, then foolishness is the way to go. In fact, sometimes it can be so easy living here that we struggle to remember we’re meant for the heavenly places, and it can be near impossible to convince others that they’ve been fooled and duped by sin. Like Mark said, it’s easier to become fooled than to learn you’ve been deceived.

As long as we love being simple, we will never overcome the world and be victorious in Jesus. We must be those who are willing to look beyond the temporary pleasures that this life has to offer; we must look beyond the temporal to the eternal; we must look beyond the world to find Jesus and follow him all the way home to the Father.