This may totally color your opinion of me, but my wife and I are fans of the show “The Big Bang Theory.” We don’t love all of it, but I kind of connect with the geekyness of the characters on the show. While I never collected comic books, never watched star trek, have never been to Comic Con and haven’t even seen the original star wars, I do connect with their lack of popularity. Although, I do have to say that they have become a little too cool in the past couple of seasons.
Anyway, the central character of the show is Sheldon Cooper. Sheldon is a genius, who graduated from college before most people graduate from high school. He is smart and he knows it. Therefore everyone else knows how smart he is. He has no concept of people’s feelings, nor does he care to. He doesn’t have time for that – he’s to busy trying to win a nobel prize and make history. While he may be able to define humility, he does not understand it. If he hurts someone’s feelings, he only cares as much as social convention requires. Everyone around him must bend to his crazy ways, and if they don’t, then they have been selfish.
Have you met someone like that? Do you know someone who can make anything about themselves? Sometimes it can be absolutely astounding. You’re certain there is no way they could make this situation about them, but somehow they do. You come to them with a situation for which you could use some support and encouragement, but instead, you find they turn the situation to get attention for themselves. Worse, they don’t even care that they’ve made it about them.
This is exactly the opposite of how wisdom teaches us to live. In this passage we see that the fear of the Lord is to hate evil. Okay, that’s easy to get. But then, in the very next sentence we see that same word used to talk about pride and arrogance. Does this mean that pride and arrogance are evil? Absolutely.
Why such strong language? I guess it could read, the fear of the Lord is to feel badly about evil, and to shy away from arrogant pride. That would make it easier for any of us who struggle with it. But that’s not the language used. The language is strong for a reason.
The person who seeks to live with prudence, finding knowledge and discretion is someone who is open. The person who is arrogant and proud is someone who is closed. There is no room for anyone but themselves. If that is the case, then there is no room for wisdom to speak life-changing truth into their life.
“I, wisdom, live with prudence,
and I find knowledge and discretion.
The fear of the Lord is to hate evil;
I hate arrogant pride and the evil way
and perverse utterances.
When we seek to make the world revolve around us, we will inevitably be faced with a situation when it doesn’t. And when we think it should, but it doesn’t we will be forced to say and do things that may or may not be true in order to get the center of gravity back where it belongs.
However, when we’re living the Proverbious life, we recognize that we are not the center of the universe. The world does not revolve around us. In fact, the opposite is true. Our lives revolve around God, His word and His ways.
That’s why the language is so strong. It’s pitting the Kingdom of me against the Kingdom of God. And the Kingdom of God wins, not Sheldon.