Some advice in the book of Proverbs is rather plain and in your face with a stand-alone section of scripture, while some advice is a little more “between the lines” because the words of wisdom are sprinkled throughout the book within individual verses. But there are times in the book when the “tip” (however stand-alone it may seem) goes from being hidden between the lines to standing right out in the open because of the numerous amount of times that a particular phrase gets used.
- there are 31 “chapters” that make up the book of Proverbs
- a particular attention getting word (I’m not talking conjunctions here) is used 28 times in the 31 chapters (which includes the first and the last chapter)
- along with that particular word, another specific and vital word shares space in the same sentence 19 times
- to me, the tip that’s being shared goes from being “between the lines” to an out in the open theme
So what is this not so between the lines wise tip from the Proverbs? Well, the theme shares multiple admonitions either at the beginning or the end of the verse, but the main thrust is, “…The fear of the Lord….”
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7)
(As a side note, the admonition to fear God/the Lord isn’t limited in any way to Proverbs. The admonition is replete throughout the scriptures, both in the Old and the New Covenant – including the Gospels when Jesus taught a specific lesson on the topic in Matthew 10:28.)