1. Scorner: to scorn, talk arrogantly; speak words which show no respect for the object, and make fun of the object, (used 18 times in Proverbs)
2. Hence, Solomon is describing a man who SCORNS God and spiritual things.
a. This is the man who makes light of the Bible…
b. He laughs at the concept of a Personal God…
c. He ridicules the creation account… and the miracles…
d. He looks down at believers as unsophisticated, naive folks who are to be pitied for their archaic and medieval religious views.
e. He makes fun of the concept of a universal flood; of Jonah being swallowed by a great fish; of the resurrection, etc…
f. He is a mocker! A scorner! He is an arrogant know it all…
3. And, as a scorner, he will not accept rebuke or correction. (Prov. 13:1)
a. This makes his condition doubly dangerous.
b. It’s bad enough to ridicule that which one believes to be false.
c. It’s even worse when, because of pride, he refuses to listen to reason… he refuses the evidence which would put an end to his mockery and scorn. (Prov. 9:8)
4. Solomon tells us something else about this kind of person: sometimes scorners genuinely SEEK after wisdom — but they can’t seem to find it!
a. This proverb teaches that a lack of desire is NOT the reason for his inability to obtain wisdom.
b. The scorner DESIRES wisdom. In fact he is seeking after it.
c. However, he doesn’t find it!
d. Some might see in this a contradiction with Prov. 2:1-6
i. Here Solomon promises that those who seek wisdom WILL find it.
ii. Here Solomon states that those who lift up their voice after wisdom and understanding WILL obtain it.
iii. Yet, in Prov. 14:6, he says that the scorner who seeks after wisdom will NOT find it.
5. WHY? Because he is a scorner! He scorns God and His Word.
a. Prov. 9:10 – The scorner is missing two key ingredients:
i. The fear of the Lord—he doesn’t fear God.
ii. The knowledge of the Holy One—he doesn’t know God.
b. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom!
c. A lack of the knowledge of God prevents him from obtaining understanding… spiritual understanding…
d. It doesn’t matter how HARD he seeks… how LONG he seeks… or how DILIGENTLY he seeks… or how SMART he is.
6. Example: Think of the NASA scientist working on the Mars project.
a. He is a brilliant man… a life dedicated to science… a rocket scientist.
b. He is seeking for the ultimate answers: how did these planets get here? How old are they? What are they FOR?
c. If I read to him Genesis 1:1—he might laugh me to scorn!
d. If I read to him Gen. 1:17—and explained what they were for: to give light upon the earth…
e. If I read to him Ps. 19:1—they are there to declare the glory of God… he would pity me as an archaic relic from medieval times!
f. He might turn to me and say something like: “I’m a scientist. I deal with the facts.”
g. To which I would reply: “Sir, I am a Christian. I too deal with the facts. And I have some facts that you will never discover through space exploration or scientific experimentation.”
h. And yet he might spend the rest of his days seeking diligently for the wisdom he genuinely desires (the answer to these ultimate questions) but he will never find.
7. Example: Think of the cosmopolitan philosopher who has studied all the major philosophies of the world… has traveled the world extensively… studied in many of the great universities…
a. He too may be diligently seeking for wisdom: why am I here? What is the purpose of life? Is there life after death? Is there any rhyme or reason to the world? How then shall I live?
b. He may spend the rest of his life in pursuit of the answers… and seek after them as diligently as a gold digger seeks after gold…
c. He spends years talking to all the gurus, the rabbis, the mullahs, Dali lama, medicine men, monks, and philosophers of the world… but never finds the wisdom he desires… never finds the answers to his ultimate questions.
d. In his pursuits he may come across a simple Christian man who opens the Bible to him and shows him that those answers are all found in God’s Holy Word…
e. But he scorns those answers as too simplistic…too naïve… not mystical enough… so he laughs under his breath… he’s a scorner.
f. Like the NASA scientist, the REASON the philosopher doesn’t find wisdom has nothing to do with his lack of seeking. It is because he doesn’t know God… and he doesn’t fear God!
g. Therefore he CAN’T have the wisdom he desires—no matter how hard he seeks.
8. The wisdom of God is NOT AVAILABLE to the wise men of the world who seek the ultimate answers apart from God.
a. I Cor. 1:20 – God has made their wisdom “foolish.”
b. I Cor. 1:21 – by means of their earthly wisdom they will never know God—which is necessary before they can obtain true wisdom.
c. God will never be discovered by meditating in a cave in Tibet; He will never be discovered under a microscope; He will never be discovered in a space ship… (Russian cosmonaut mockingly said: “I don’t see any god out here!”)
d. The scorner who rejects God and God’s Word can seek for divine wisdom for 100 years and never find it.
e. I Cor. 2:9 – true spiritual wisdom does not come through scientific discovery… or through studying the classic philosophers… it is supernaturally revealed in the Bible.
f. One who rejects God’s Word—and laughs it to scorn forever condemns himself to seeking after that which he will never obtain!
g. Prov. 17:16 – Solomon describes the FOOL who seeks wisdom.
i. He seeks it; he is willing to PAY for it; sacrifice for it;
ii. But he never obtains it.
iii. Why? Because he has no HEART for it!
iv. True wisdom requires HEART involvement… not just intellectual seeking… nor fleshly sacrificing…
v. Without a genuine heart for wisdom—it will never be found!
vi. A student can pay top dollar to attend the finest of seminaries… and study diligently… but his heart isn’t right—he will not find the wisdom he seems to be seeking.
vii. (Cf. 18:2)—it’s a heart problem.
viii. God’s wisdom is like a precious diamond. But if one has no heart-appreciation for diamonds—then digging up a diamond is like digging up a worthless rock.
1. In the second part of this proverb, God MOCKS the so called wise men of the world.
2. All the brilliant minds the world’s highly educated, sophisticated, upper crust are busy seeking for something that is beyond their grasp…
3. Yet, God made what they are seeking for EASY for the simple child of faith.
a. The sixth grade Sunday school student knows why we are here! He read it in the Bible and believes it.
b. The fourth grade Christian student knows where Mars came from: God made it. He said so in His Word!
c. Why are we here? We are here to glorify God. The Bible tells me so!
d. The ultimate answers to life really ARE easy—IF you take God’s Word for what it says.
e. Why did God make Mars? To give light upon the earth!
4. The 6th grade Sunday school student who believes the Bible has something the brilliant scientist and the worldly philosopher doesn’t have: UNDERSTANDING!
a. He has spiritual understanding… spiritual discernment.
b. He is able to discern things EASILY…
c. The scientist spins his intellectual wheels in the mud his whole life long trying to discover what the child knows.
d. God has always dealt this way with truth and wisdom.
e. Matt. 13:10-13 – This is why Jesus spoke in parables.
i. To those with spiritual understanding would see and hear. The scorners would reject it as folly.
ii. The one who has spiritual understanding, God will give him MORE.
iii. The one who does NOT have spiritual understanding will lose what little discernment he has… spiritual blindness will set in.
5. Knowledge is easy to the one who knows where to look!
a. The gold digger who digs where the gold is will find some if he keeps on digging.
b. But the gold digger who is TOLD where the gold is—and laughs at you—and starts digging elsewhere is NOT going to find any.
c. And the reason he doesn’t find it is not because he isn’t diligent… it’s not because he doesn’t desire it… it’s not because he isn’t dedicated to finding it…
d. It’s because he is looking in the wrong place.
e. If you know where to dig—it’s not hard to find gold! It’s EASY to find knowledge in this gold mine! (Bible!)
f. James 1:5-6 – do you need wisdom? Go to God and ask. It’s that easy. The proud man who refuses to go to God may put his brilliant mind to work studying the ancient philosophers—but he will come up empty… because he’s barking up the wrong tree.
g. The fear of the Lord causes a man to depart from evil too… and that will put him back on track… the wisdom of God is not going to be found on the wrong road.
i. The one who fears God will depart from evil—will stay on the straight and narrow way… and that man will find what he’s looking for.
ii. On the narrow way, he will discover that God’s wisdom is EASY. That road is well marked.