Who Is A Fool? -
Pastor David L. Brown, Ph.D.
Sermon Delivered 3/18/01
"See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,"
1) A person is a fool who denies the existence of God. Psalms 14:1
2) A person is a fool who trusts in his own heart. Proverbs 28:26
3) A person is a fool who despises wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7
4) A person is a fool who is quick-tempered. Ecc. 7:9; Proverbs 14:16-17
5) A person is a fool who scoffs at sin. Proverbs 14:9; 10:23
The focus of this message is our final answer to the question, Who is a
fool? A person is a fool who scoffs at sin. Before we look at this last point, letís review
the definition of a fool.
Reviewing the Definition of A Fool
The term fool is often used for a sinful, wicked or immoral
person who will not obey the commands of the Lord. The fool acts contrary to biblical
wisdom in his choices and behavior. He follows his own inclinations and desires. The fool
prefers to enjoy the immediate, insignificant pleasures of the here and now to obeying and
serving the Lord and being rewarded in eternity.
Focus: Who is a fool? A person is a fool who scoffs at sin.
There are two key passages that I turn your attention to --
"Fools make a mock at sin: but among the righteous there is favour." Proverbs
"It is as sport to a fool to do mischief: but a man of understanding hath
wisdom." Proverbs 10:23
- A Fool Makes Light of Sin
Consider the former passage: "Fools make a mock at sin." Proverbs 14:9
The key word in this passage is mock. It is a translation of
the Hebrew word Uwl luwts (loots; 03887) that literally means
"to make mouths at." The implication is, one who talks arrogantly, scoffs,
sneer at or scorns. What this verse is saying is that fools make light of sin. They ignore or
scoff at anyone who rebukes them for their sinful behabior.
- A Fool Amuses Himself With Sin
Turn to Proverbs 10:23 Ė "It is as sport to a fool to
do mischief." In order to understand this verse we must look at two key words. The first
is mischief. The problem is that in the 21st century mischief connotes
trivial trouble making. But, back in the 17th century mischief intentional injury;
harm or damage done by design. The Hebrew word translated mischief is this verse is ever
stronger. It is hmz zimmah (zim-maw'; 2154), which means
heinous sin, crime or wickedness.
That brings us to the word sport. The Hebrew word is qwxs
sechowq (sekh-oke'; 7814), which means contemptuous or despicable amusement. The best
biblical illustration that will help us to understand the word sport is found in Judges
16:20-27. The wicked Philistines took great pleasure in gouging out Samsonís eyes and
then amusing themselves by taunting him.
Proverbs 10:23 could legitimately be stated this way. Fools amuse
themselves by practicing great wickedness!
18th century Baptist preacher John Gill says, "It is as
sport to a fool to do mischief" refers to doing any injury to the persons and properties
of men, which shows a most wicked and malicious spirit and a very depraved nature. It means,
"to commit sin" of any sort, which he has devised in his own heart. It is as a
"laughing," as the words may be rendered. Rather, it is a laughing matter to him;
he commits sin, and, when he has done it, laughs at it. Instead of being ashamed of it, and
humbled for it, he makes a mock at it, and a jest of it, as well as of all religion, and of the
reproofs and admonitions of good men. Sin is his pastime. He takes as much delight and takes
pleasure in it as men do in their sports. He commits sin openly and freely; yea, not only takes
pleasure in doing it himself, but in them that do it.
Gills comments are well founded. Consider Romans 1:28-32. The
key verse is verse 32. Letís read the passage. "And even as they did not like to
retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those
things which are not convenient; 29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication,
wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity;
whisperers, 30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil
things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, covenant-breakers, without
natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they
which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them
that do them."
- There is a payday coming for the fool who
scoffs at sin!
Donít toy with sin. It does not pay. Psalm 1 makes that clear!
While there are those who laugh at future judgment God has promised in His Word saying,
"where is the promise of his coming?" (2 Peter 3:4), Godís judgment will come to
pass in his time. Proverbs 19:29 says, "Judgments are prepared for scorners, and
stripes for the back of fools." Isaiah 5:20 asserts, "Woe unto them that call
evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter
for sweet, and sweet for bitter!"
There is a dramatic contrast between how God deals with the fool and how He
deals with the righteous. One of our text verses notes: "among the righteous there is favour."
Proverbs 14:9. That is to say, the righteous enjoy the favor of God and man. They
experience "the good will" of God.
I would rather experience the good will of God than the judgment of God any
day. What about you? If you agree, donít be a fool when it comes to sin.