Proverbs 3.7-8 — The Path to Health

The fourth of the five couplets in Proverbs 3 is verses 7-8: if you fear the Lord, it will bring healing to your body. Remember, as I’ve said all along, these are PROVERBS, not guarantees.

Let’s look at them in detail. It starts off with the same thought as is in Rom. 12.3: “Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.” Remember back to our discussion of the fear of the Lord in 1.7. It’s a relationship with God that gives us an adequate understanding of Him as well as an accurate perspective on ourselves as well. And herein lies the problem: We just think that what we think is right. Too often the wrong path, perspective, and spiritual blindness become so engrained in us we become convinced it’s true. This is both natural and understandable. Duh—people don’t hold to what they know to be false. They think they’re right. But not everyone is right. Our path to wisdom is a long and uncertain one. We have to approach knowledge as a journey, and with humility. When pride enters the picture, so does danger. We have to be on guard that God is always our reference point.

This is also a good verse to follow verse 6, because if we depend on our own understanding, thinking we are wise, we will try to do things with our own resources, which will not be sufficient. In all our ways, we need to acknowledge God—fear him, and shun evil.

It’s also true that along the way some people DO learn wisdom, discernment, discipline, prudence, and knowledge. We can actually become quite wise, and even know some of the mysteries of the ages (Lk. 8.16-18; 1 Cor. 13.2). But we always have to be on guard of thinking of ourselves more highly than we ought.

The result is health. The idea being taught here is that if a person fears God, avoids evil, and has humility, then they will be healthy and refreshed people. All things being equal (an important condition), it’s generally true. We take better care of ourselves, and are more prone to avoid things that destroy our bodies.

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