BDBD is Proverbs 14:16

A wise man fears the LORD and shuns evil…” is one of the main themes of the book of Proverbs. (1:7, 1:29, 2:5, 3:7, 8:13, 9:10, 10:27, 14:2, 16, 26, 27, etc) Here the wise man is compared to the fool who is “hotheaded and reckless”. Hotheaded and reckless in the original Hebrew is “abar batah”. While most agree with the NIVs translation (which is used in BDBD), some English translations have “careless and overconfident”.

A person who does not fear the Lord loses self-control. Left uncontrolled we all will slide toward thoughts and emotions that include anger and confidence in abilities that do not exist. These lead to disastrous results.

When I was a young teen I went snow-sliding down a steep hill on a Flexible Flyer. After many trips sitting down on the Flyer, my friends and cousin started standing up while going down. So did I. Someone had built a snow ramp at the bottom of the hill. While I was gliding down the hill standing up on the Flyer I saw that I was heading straight for a snow ramp. No matter how I tried to turn the Flyer it remained on course. Instead of gliding over the ramp, the front metal rails dug into the ramp. I was flung in the air doing flips and other not-so-elegant spins. I landed hard on a frozen lake. I instinctively tried to brace my landing with my hands. Thus breaking my wrist.

Losing control breaks things. A wise man learns to have respect enough to know what shouldn’t be done and what should be done. Fearing the Lord and shining evil are the actions of the wise who know what deserves respect.