by Rev (Dr) Quek Suan Yew
Published in the Weekly of Calvary Pandan Bible-Presbyterian Church
Dated 18th September 2022
Sermon Preached in Tabernacle Bible-Presbyterian Church
on 11th September 2022

“The lips of the righteous feed many: but fools die for want of wisdom.”
(Proverbs 10:21)

There are many types of fools in the Bible. The following fools are three different
Hebrew words used specifically by God for three different contexts. The fool
in Psalm 14:1, “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt,
they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good”, refers to one who
is senseless because the evidence of the existence of God is all around him to see how
real and powerful God is, day and night, but he refuses to see. God calls him a fool!
The fool in Proverbs 10:18, “He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that
uttereth a slander, is a fool”, is a silly arrogant fool. He thinks that God does not
know his lies and hypocrisy! But the fool in Proverbs 10:21 is arguably the greatest
of all fools. He is a fool who despises wisdom! He is taught the Word of God but he
refuses to receive and obey it.

He is like a person dying of hunger while surrounded by the best delicious food on
earth! All he has to do is to reach out to take and eat them and he will live. This fool
is found in every sound church and godly home. He hears the Word of God at home
and in church but does not believe. He might even criticise the Word of God. The
Lord calls him a fool who lacks wisdom. The word for wisdom is actually the word
for “heart.” This fool lacks a heart that has been transformed by the blood of Christ.
Doesn’t the Bible state clearly in Romans 10:9-10 that salvation always involves the
heart? “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in
thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the
heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto

Proverbs 10:21 does not say that “fools die for want of knowledge!” If that is true
then it is easy to not be a fool. A Bible College student is not a fool, for he has
accumulated an abundance of knowledge. The one who has a good memory has a
copious amount of head knowledge of the Bible. He is also not a fool. Any professing
believer who attends church or Sunday school will not be called a fool here if he is
one who lacks knowledge. But the moment God says that it is the heart that is lacking
and not the head, then many in Bible Colleges, Bible seminaries, church goers, even
preachers and teachers of God’s Word can be fools in the eyes of God. The heart is
still hardened and stone cold! We need to admit that God’s Word is not meant to be
memorized and studied like the books of man. God’s Word is to be obeyed from the
heart! The heart is the seat of our being and the beginning of our salvation. A person
who is born again in Christ receives a new heart. “And hope maketh not ashamed;
because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is
given unto us.” (Rom. 5:5) The love of God resides in his heart. This is his new
motivation in all his relationships.

But the fool who might be a professing Christian is still living in sin without
knowing it. He thinks he is a believer but his life is worldly and the decisions he
makes are earth bound and self-serving! His struggle is that he is unable to apply
God’s Word to his life. The Bible is to him like a closed book. He studies but is
not able to come to the knowledge of the truth. If he is a teacher in church and
may be said by his students to be a good teacher, he can stitch together the
teachings from a few Bible commentaries and present them logically and
passionately. In this way he masks his own hardened heart. He gets by and others
around him accept him as one of their own. He is a wolf in sheep’s clothing,
consciously or unconsciously. His behaviour defines him as such. He is a danger
to others and to himself. He is a fool who will die in his deception.

But the one who decides to stop being a fool must run toward righteousness. He
must seize righteousness and hold on to it for dear life. But where is
righteousness found? The Bible declares emphatically in Romans 3:10-11, “As it
is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that
understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.” To seize righteousness, one
must allow righteousness to seize him. This takes place immediately when a
sinner receives Jesus Christ into his heart as his Lord and Saviour. The reason he
accepts Christ is because he acknowledges his many sins against God and that he
cannot save himself but will die in his sins like the fool. He knows that Jesus
Christ suffered and died on the cross for his sins and rose from the dead for his

The Bible says in Romans 5:17-21, “For if by one man’s offence death reigned
by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of
righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Therefore as by the
offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the
righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For
as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of
one shall many be made righteous. Moreover the law entered, that the offence
might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: That as
sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness
unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.” Every truly born again believer is
righteous. His lips will reveal the righteousness that is within.

The lips of the righteous feed many because the words that flow from his lips are
God’s Word. The feeding is not about physical food. The lips of a doctor are
medical words. The lips of a chef are about food. The lips of the righteous are
about righteous words. The righteous words are God’s truth. His heart is
righteous therefore his lips are called the lips of the righteous. The fool’s lips
could be “righteous” because he can quote and teach the Scriptures; therefore the
LORD focuses on his heart instead. In this way the message to all hypocrites is
very clear.

The words of one who is righteous within will feed many. This is a
spiritual feeding because his words will be able to help anyone who asks
him for counsel; they will be taught God’s Word. It is God who is
helping. The Bible is a timeless Book that teaches all who are righteous
about every manner of life, adversity, problem and people. There is
counsel in the Bible on how to be a godly husband and father, a godly
wife and mother. There are revelations on how to be a godly businessman
or a politician. God’s Word warns God’s children to stay away from all
facets of sin and transgression and how to live in holiness. The Bible is a
heavenly Book that shows man how to get out of hell and into heaven. It
teaches God’s children how to praise, worship, pray and serve Him in a
way that is always pleasing to Him. There is nothing on earth and in
heaven that is good for man that the Bible does not teach

The righteous man has the mind of Christ given to him at his spiritual
birth in Christ. He needs to fill this mind with the knowledge of Christ,
i.e. the Bible. The more he studies the Bible with a heart of obedience, the
more his lips will feed many. Believers who are in trouble or have fallen
into temptations or have allowed the world to grip their hearts may find
this righteous man to help them make right their walk with God. Sinners
who go to him for help and advice will be taught the truth about their
greatest need. He can point them to Christ through his interaction with
them. He does this as part of his life because he is a walking testimony of
God’s amazing salvific grace.

If you are not born again, run toward righteousness in Jesus Christ and do
not let go till He returns in glory and calls you home. The choice is
simple. Don’t die a fool! Amen.