Maybe you have been thinking about how easy it is to get caught up in foolishness---whether it is you, your spouse, your friends, your child, your child's friends, co-workers, etc., we always need to be on guard for when we are getting off on the wrong track. Here is a good list that shares some characteristics of foolish behavior.
1. Denying, disregarding, or rebelling against God
The fool says in his heart “There is no God” (Psalm 14:1).
2. Slandering, lying, deceiving
He who conceals his hatred has lying lips, and whoever spreads slander is a fool
A fool is quick-tempered, but a wise person stays calm when insulted (Proverbs 12:16).
4. Acts Impetuously and Without Regard for Consequences
Wise people think before they act; fools don’t and even brag about it! (Proverbs 13:16).
A wise man fears the Lord and shuns evil, but a fool is hotheaded and reckless
5. Talks endlessly, brags, spouts off frequently
A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinions
Wise men store up knowledge, but the mouth of a fool invites ruin (Proverbs 10:14).
The mouths of fools are their ruin; their lips get them into trouble (Proverbs 18:7).
6. Refuses Advice, Accountability and/or Discipline
A fool spurns his father’s discipline, but whoever heeds correction shows prudence
A rebuke impresses a man of discernment more than a hundred lashes a fool
7. Handles Money Recklessly
Of what use is money in the hand of a fool, since he has no desire to get wisdom?
In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all
he has (Proverbs 21:20).
8. Quarrels frequently, picks fights, is contentious
Fools get into constant quarrels; they are asking for a beating (Proverbs 18:6 ).
A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control
9. Lazy, Lacks Focus and Ambition
Foolish people refuse to work and almost starve (Ecclesiastes 4:5).
A wise person thinks much about death, while the fool thinks only about having a good time now
(Ecclesiastes 7:4 ).
Fools are so exhausted by a little work that they have no strength for even the simplest tasks
(Ecclesiastes 10:15 ).
10. Never Learns from Past Experience
As a do returns to his vomit, so a fool repeats his folly (Proverbs 26:11).
You cannot separate fools from their foolishness, even though you grind them like grain with
mortar and pestle (Proverbs 27:22 ).
How are we to respond to foolish behavior?
1. First and most importantly, we pray for them.
2. Second, watch your attitude and motivation toward these foolish people
Principle #1 – Don’t be surprised if they refuse good advice.
Don’t waste your breath on fools, for they will despise the wisest advice
(Proverbs 23:9 ).
Principle #2 – Don’t give them honor or luxury.
It is not fitting for a fool to live in luxury – how much worse for a slave to rule over princes!
Like snow in summer or rain in harvest, honor is not fitting for a fool (Proverbs 26:1).
Principle #3 – Don’t argue with foolish people.
Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce
quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to
teach, not resentful (2 Tim. 2:23-24).
Principle #4 – Protect yourself from the resentment and anger caused by foolish people.
A stone is heavy and sand is weighty, but the resentment caused by a fool is heavier than both
(Proverbs 27:3 ).
Stay away from a foolish man, for you will not find knowledge on his lips (Proverbs 14:7).
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