The Beginning of Wisdom
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. For through me your days will be many, and years will be added to your life. Proverbs 9:10-11, NIV Everyone would like to live longer! Here in this scripture is one of the primary keys for extending the days of our life. But it is not a key that too many people want to use, for using it requires a determination to make sure that God has priority in all of life's choices. The carnal nature and the ways of the world are always opposed to the ways of God and obedience to the Word of God is always at odds with the desires of the flesh.
I frequently hear or read of people whose lives were tragically terminated in needless accidents from drink and driving, or through drugs or a disease that was contracted as a result of their sexual lifestyle. It is easy to see how such people would have lived a lot longer, if a holy fear of grieving the God who loves them had been the motivation of their life choices.
When people know and love the Lord and have a knowledge of Him and His ways, then they will want to carefully plan their lives according to the will of God - for this will be their desire and their joy. And as Nehemiah said, "the joy of the Lord shall be your strength". (Nehemiah 8:10)
When we truly walk in the ways of God, then the days of our life are surely in the hands of the Lord, but if we choose to walk in the paths of the enemy then we are using our free will to give Satan authority over our destiny. For example, Proverbs 6:22-23 tells us that those who go down to the house of the adulteress (or adulterer) are treading a pathway that leads to death. And in Psalm 91 we read that it is those who dwell in the shelter of the Most High who are under His protection, for He becomes their "refuge and fortress".
I passionately believe that when we live in the holy fear of the living God, and walk in His ways, then we are denying the enemy the opportunity to shorten our days through the law of sowing and reaping being applied in our lives (Galatians 6:7-8). None of us can determine just how many our days shall be, but it is good to know we can extend them by taking seriously the scriptural encouragement to live godly lives.
Prayer: Help me, Lord, to always make godly choices in my life so that my days will be extended and the enemy will not be able to use my sinfulness to undermine the work of God in my life. In Jesus Name, Amen.