Though thou shouldest bray a fool in a mortar among wheat with a pestle, yet will not his foolishness depart from him. (KJV)
You cannot separate fools from their foolishness, even though you grind them like grain with mortar and pestle. (NLT)
When you are talking to a fool, it is like talking to a brick wall. Why even bother? If talking to someone is like talking to a brick wall, the person you are speaking to does not listen.
Our verse today explains to us that even when a fool is put under pressure, the foolishness inside them will remain.
The website “Let God Be True” explains our verse this way:
A mortar was a cup-shaped stone vessel that held grain, so it could be pulverized with a pestle, a club-like instrument used to pound the grain. Braying the grain meant to beat, bruise, and crush it to powder. The metaphor is powerful! If you were to smash a fool in a mortar with a pestle, you could not drive away his foolishness and make him wise.
There is only one way for a fool to get rid of his foolishness – to fear the Lord (Proverbs 1:7)
Lord, I pray that I will fear you more and more each and every day. I want wisdom to be my present and my future. I don’t want the Lord to see my life and say that it was like talking to a brick wall when He was speaking to me.
June 24th, 2017 at 10:37 am
But with Christ came our mission to lead others to reconciliation, for even God can lead fools to transformation.
“So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. (2 Cor.5:16-20 NIV)
June 25th, 2017 at 8:42 am
Susan, thank you for your comment, and you are correct. However, I think this proverb is more directed at the unrepentant fool and those who try to change his mind by means other than Jesus. If we look at it that way, the way we apply the truth of the proverb may look more like this: “You know that guy you keep hounding? You’re not going to get anywhere with him right now, so just pray for him and let the Spirit work on his heart.” Do you think that’s a good interpretation?
June 25th, 2017 at 12:41 pm
Yes, Anthony, that interpretation makes a lot of sense. Sometimes, we need to keep praying, get out of the way and allow God to take over. 😉