QUESTION: There seems to be a lot of foolishness in the world today, what does the Bible say about foolishness?
ANSWER: Let’s begin our investigation with a parable of Jesus. Matthew 25:1-
13 (KJV) “Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins,
which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. 2And five of them were wise, and five were foolish (misused wisdom). 3They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: 4But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 5While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. 6And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. 7Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. 8And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. 9But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. 10And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. 11Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. 12But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. 13Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.”
It seems to me the message of Jesus is very clear—as we watch for the second coming of Christ we must watch and wait prepared and anything less than that is fool- ishness. As we can readily see from the implication of the message wisdom and foolishness are opposite terms and are as different as night and day. Verse 3 clearly points out “neglect” in the human life as foolishness that will not be accepted by Christ on final judgment. Verse 8 states this “neglect” then leads to the thinking
that we can borrow from someone else on judgment day and be OK, but that will not happen either. So, why live our earthly lives in a foolish manner? Now verses 11-12, which relates to most people, they think that they can seek “mercy” on judgment day and receive it. But, it is foolish to think that when the Bible does not teach it. The Bible is clear, and so, verse 13 says for us to watch (be alert and vigilant) because Jesus could come any day now! Just because five of these young women were foolish does not mean that we have to follow in their footsteps. Does it?
Let’s consider exactly where foolishness originates: Mark 7:21-23 (KJV) “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, 22Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: 23All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.” The things mentioned here do not happen on the spur of the moment or accidentally, yet they are things that defile a person and corrupt the heart—they are foolish, and must be avoided!
Paul teaches us that anyone who acts foolish is blind—no not blind physically, but spiritually: 1 Corinthians 1:18 (KJV) “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” Romans 1:16 (KJV) “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” The world in general fails to believe and obey the gospel— the gospel calls for us to hear, believe, repent, confess Christ and be baptized to wash away sin, yet the religious world teaches different and various ways to be saved and people believe and practice these false doctrines. That is being blind to what the Bible says— that’s foolishness!
Solomon expounded on being foolish by contrasting (complete opposites) wise and foolish things in Proverbs 10:1-15:33. Space will not allow us to print all six of these chapters, but we will notice just a few verses as examples. Proverbs 10:4-5 (KJV) “He becometh poor that dealeth with a slack hand: but the hand of the diligent maketh rich. 5He that gathereth in summer is a wise son: but he that sleepeth in harvest is a son that causeth shame.” Proverbs 11:1 (KJV) “A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight.” Proverbs 11:15 (KJV) “He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretiship is sure.” Proverbs 12:11 (KJV) “He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that followeth vain persons is void of understanding.” Proverbs 12:27 (KJV) “The slothful man roasteth not that which he took in hunting: but the substance of a diligent man is precious.” Proverbs 13:4 (KJV) “The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat.” Proverbs 13:11 (KJV) “Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase.” Proverbs 13:23 (KJV) “Much food is in the tillage of the poor: but there is that is destroyed for want of judgment.” Proverbs 14:16 (KJV) “A wise man feareth, and departeth from evil: but the fool rageth, and is confident.” Proverbs 14:34 (KJV) “Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.” Proverbs 15:3 (KJV) “The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” Proverbs 15:5 (KJV) “A fool despiseth his father's instruction: but he that regardeth reproof is prudent.” Proverbs 15:8 (KJV) “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.” Proverbs 15:16 (KJV) “Better is little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and trouble therewith.”
Read and study the Book of Solomon and see the wisdom, not foolishness, that he taught. It’ll be worth your time.
Do you have a Bible question or comment you would like to have answered? Call Marshall at (423) 272-2404.