Thursday, June 21, 2012


One of the reasons I love Ortlund's Wisdom that Works is that it is not a moralistic, behavioralist approach to the Proverbs (or life!). It is a Christ-centered approach to the Proverbs (and life!). Ortlund makes sure, chapter after chapter, to show us how Proverbs fits into the full arc of the Bible story line (that is always aimed at Jesus!).

Here's one example in chapter 18 (p 159) where he is addressing the fear of the Lord (boldface emphasis added):
One of the reasons we don't fear the Lord enough is that we fear people too much. We fear their disapproval. We get our okayness from the approval we sense from other people. But wisdom redirects our hunger for approval. Whose smile will really satisfy us? If God approves us up front, on terms of grace, that satisfies. If you are in Christ today, God wants you to know that your relationship with God tomorrow is pre-approved. God will correct you as needed, but he will not reject you, because Christ has already won God's approval for you. ... We'd like to please everybody. But we must please him. That is the fear of the Lord. Wouldn't it be great to stop fearing people so much?

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