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Lord Please Send More Bears!

June 30, 2018
Dr. J.B. Hixson
Lord please send more bears

Lord, Please Send More Bears!

"Better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs than a fool in his folly." (Proverbs 17:12)

Bears are a normal part of life this time of year here in the mountains.  They get into our garbage, knock over our bird feeders, and they love to stir up our dog, Juneau.  As long as they are just a nuisance, bears can be pretty fun to watch.  We have captured several videos of a bear climbing up a tree or bounding away toward the river when we scare it off.  But of course, bears can be dangerous as well.

Just ask Allena Hansen, a fifty-six year-old woman from Caliente, CA.  She had an unfortunate encounter with a bear and had to endure ten hours of surgery to her face and head to repair the damage done by the mauling.  Doctors say she is lucky to be alive.

As bad as a bear mauling may sound, there is something worse.  According to the Bible, a “fool in his folly” is an even more ferocious foe.  Proverbs 17:12 cautions, “Better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs than a fool in his folly.”  The word picture here is a vivid one.  The only thing worse than an unfortunate encounter with a bear is an unfortunate encounter with a bear robbed of her cubs.  And the only thing worse than an unfortunate encounter with a bear robbed of her cubs is an unfortunate encounter with a fool in his folly.

In the Book of Proverbs, a “fool” represents the antithesis of God's ways, God's viewpoint, God's perspective, God's ideal.  A fool is someone who does not behave according to the normal standards of right and wrong or fairness or justice.  A fool has his own rulebook.  Motivated by pride (the seedbed of all sin), a fool will stop at nothing to achieve his purpose.  A fool is obsessed with his agenda and determined to achieve his selfish ends.  Like a bear whose single-minded purpose it to protect her cubs, a fool at the height of his folly is focused on protecting only one thing: himself.

There are, of course, degrees of foolishness.  Not all bears are killers; and not all fools are self-deceived marauders seeking to destroy anyone who gets in their way.  But left unchecked foolishness degenerates into the kind of sinful and hateful behavior that will make a bear robbed of her cubs seem like a harmless furry hamster.  That is why Proverbs warns: Watch out for a fool in his folly!

Just as you cannot talk an attacking bear out of eating you for supper, likewise there is no reasoning with a fool in his folly.  No amount of logic or rationality will convince him to correct course.  He is a fool.  He has abandoned biblical principles (if he ever had them to begin with) and is dead set on advancing his self-serving agenda, whatever it may be.

Fools bring heartache, frustration, and stress.  A good fool can ruin your day.  So what's the remedy for such an encounter?  How can you survive when a fool is pestering you?  To begin with, never forget the principle of grace.  All of us can be foolish at times.  So before picking up the pepper spray, remember to look in the mirror.  Secondly, focus on the needs of the fool.  What is causing him or her to behave this way?  Seek to encourage and graciously love them.  If the person is not a believer, share the Gospel!  God may use you to help turn a fool into a follower of Christ!  Through it all...exercise patience.

And if all else fails, when you encounter a fool in his folly, I suggest a prayer that goes something like this: “Lord, please send more bears!”  At least you have a fighting chance against the bear.


Tags: fools, folly

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