Proverbs 1:33

But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.
– Proverbs 1:33

Contrast finally comes from the fools who refuse wisdom. Those who will hear with understanding (Proverbs 1:5, 8), shall find wisdom and the fruits of it. Evil is calamity and reinforces dwelling safely. It’s not that the wise will have no problems, but wisdom will keep them from many pitfalls the fools fall into. Having wisdom is having discernment, choosing the good way, and refusing the bad. It is to consider the end and not only the immediate payout.

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Proverbs 1:32

For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.
– Proverbs 1:32

Turning away points to the active refusal of wisdom (Proverbs 1:23). It is as though wisdom is considered and found detestable and discarded. Refusing wisdom is suicidal (Proverbs 8:36). Prosperity speaks of abundance and security. Every perceived gain by folly, no matter how small, only confirms fools in their way. Their way leads to destruction.

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Proverbs 1:31

Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.
– Proverbs 1:31

Wisdom is not natural with us. We have to receive it. Folly is natural to us. We have to refuse it. The judgment that comes on those who continually refuse wisdom is that they are allowed to go their own way to the end. In other words, fools plant a crop of folly and come to eat their own harvest in the end. Paul taught that we reap what we sow (Galatians 6:7-8). When we refuse wisdom, we are given our folly to the full and the consequences thereof. When we thus suffer at our own hands, we have none else to blame.

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Proverbs 1:30

They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.
– Proverbs 1:30

Wisdom reiterates the reproof from verse 25 and provides explanation for the judgment to come in the next verse. It highlights the active refusal of wisdom by the fools who go their own way. This is a display of man’s depravity that he will only of himself choose sin and folly.

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Proverbs 1:29

For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD:
– Proverbs 1:29

Fools actively reject wisdom. It is foolishness to them. This is in explanation of the previous two verses. Though wisdom cries long, there comes a time when she cannot be found. This verse describes the hardened, obstinate sinner who hated knowledge and refused to fear God. The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom and no one starts in wisdom but they start there (Proverbs 1:7). By refusing the fear of the Lord, they show they try to come some other way, but none is found.

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Proverbs 1:28

Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:
– Proverbs 1:28

Though wisdom cries in the streets and bids the wayward turn at reproof, there is a time when it is too late. Fools were pictured as refusing wisdom and now are pictured as seeking for it early. Seeking it early conveys the thought of earnestness or diligence. This is not repentance but a desire to be delivered from the consequences of their own folly. No amount of seeking or calling will avail when it is too late.

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Proverbs 1:27

When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.
– Proverbs 1:27

Fear expresses alarm. Desolation, destruction, whirlwind, distress, and anguish point to suddenness and confusion. A part of the suddenness of a fool’s calamity is that it comes unlooked for. A fool thinks not too far ahead and doesn’t think they will come to ruin. It’s beyond question these will come upon the fool. It’s only a matter of time.

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Proverbs 1:26

I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;
– Proverbs 1:26

This verse continues from the previous one. God laughing at their calamity is an expression of just judgment (Psalm 2:1-4; 37:12-13). The picture is clear. Wisdom has long cried to the simple and the fools to turn at her reproof. Wisdom has long warned of the destruction that waits at the end of folly’s road. Yet, the fools, the simple, the scorners have refused wise counsel and went on their own way. When they come to the end of that way, they will want to escape the dread consequences but God will not hear their cries then. The call to forsake folly and embrace wisdom is an urgent one.

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Proverbs 1:25

But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof:
– Proverbs 1:25

To “set at nought” is to dismiss or to refuse as worthless. “Would none of” means not willing. The picture is once again drawn of fools who lack wisdom because they do not want it. They despise wisdom and count it foolishness. This must be kept in mind when the proceeding verses spell out the calamities that come on the fools. They are reaping what they have sown.

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