The Bible has plenty to say about fools, particularly Solomon. He mentions fools over 65 times in the book of Proverbs alone. What do fools do? Nelson’s Bible Dictionary says a fool is “a stupid person or a senseless act.”

In Proverbs Solomon paints the picture of a fool by telling us what fools do. Now, before you jump to the second section you first need to ask, “Am I acting foolish myself?”. Before you think to yourself, “The Bible is about to prove that _______ is a fool!” think about yourself. Also, sometimes even very wise people do very foolish things in the moment.

But we work with people. We have people in our families. People are running for president. People are in our neighborhood associations. People are in our churches! There may be fools anywhere at anytime. Not to mention social media—each day 55,000,000 status updates are made on Facebook alone. You never know when you might bump into a fool (or do something foolish yourself).

What Fools Do

  • Fools despise listening to other people or taking instruction from other people. Prov 1:7
  • Fools are complacent—shrug their shoulders about serious issues and warnings. Prov 1:32
  • Fools babble (despising commandments) and bring ruin on themselves. Prov 10:8.
  • Fools slander other people—damaging a person’s reputation. Prov 10:18
  • Fools have no sense and are unproductive. Prov 10:21
  • Fools think doing wrong is funny or a joke. Prov 10:23
  • Fools think they are always right, not listening to advice. Prov 12:15
  • Fools are shocked and offended everytime someone insults them. Prov 12:16
  • Fools cannot help exposing the stupid ideas that arise in their minds. Prov 12:23
  • Fools think nothing of their sin, the guilt it incurs, or the sacrifice it demands. Prov 14:9
  • Fools are reckless and careless, they throw caution to the wind. Prov 14:16
  • Fools hate listening to their fathers. Prov 15:5
  • Fools can be struck 100 times and never learn their lesson. Prov 17:10
  • Fools get into fights because they open their mouth too much. Prov 18:6
  • Fools don’t want to understand, they just want to share their opinion. Prov 18:2
  • Fools make the same mistakes over and over again. Prov 26:11
  • Fools only rage and laugh in the midst of wise conversations. Prov 29:9
  • Fools say or post whatever comes to their mind—they have no filter. Prov 29:11

So, done anything foolish lately? Bump into a fool or someone caught in moment of foolishness? If you do not want to be a fool….don’t do the things above. They are foolish.


What To Do With Fools

But what if we, by sheer odds and rare occasion, happen to have the company of a fool? What if we were to catch someone in a lapse moment when they were lacking their wisdom?

  • Don’t waste your time rebuking them over and over. It does no good. Prov 17:10
  • Don’t speak in the hearing of a fool, he will despise it. Prov 23:9
  • Don’t bother arguing with a fool, you’ll get sucked into the foolishness. Prov 26:4
  • Don’t always be silent around a fool or he’ll never know how wrong he is. Prov 26:5
  • Don’t make a fool your messenger. Prov 26:6
  • Don’t make a fool a teacher. Prov 26:7, 9
  • Don’t trust a fool with an important task. Prov 26:8
  • Don’t hire a fool and expect he’ll cause no harm in the process. Prov 26:10

The Most Foolish Thing

Ultimately foolishness and wisdom are determined by Jesus. All the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are bound in him (Col 2:3). Jesus warned us not to haphazardly call other people fools out of our anger and that to do so would make us “liable to the hell of fire” (Matt 5:22).

Moreover, if you want to keep from being foolish know that it is about much more than keeping your mouth closed so no one knows you are a fool (Prov 17:18). The ultimate foolishness is rejecting the words of the wisest man--Jesus:

Matthew 7:24–27

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”

For His Glory (and trying to stay away from foolishness myself), 

Nathan Loudin



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