No one likes to be thought of as a fool. Yet, according to the Bible, the world is full of fools. The Scriptures even describe a number of ways to become a fool.
Here are seven ways to be a fool:
1. Doubt the resurrection. The resurrection is a difficult concept for mortals to understand. Some find this reason enough to doubt that there will be a resurrection. By doubting the resurrection, they have an excuse to live in pleasure and moral foolishness. The apostle Paul observed that “if the dead do not rise” we could well say, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!” (1 Corinthians 15:32). Notice that doubting the resurrection leads to poor direction in this life. Given the fact that Christ rose from the dead, it is foolish to doubt the resurrection just because we do not understand how a dead person can come back to life. Paul notes that “someone will say, ‘How are the dead raised up? And with what body do they come?’” He calls the person who would ask such doubt-filled questions a “foolish one” (1 Corinthians 15:35-36).
2. Build your life around worldly accomplishments and prosperity. In Luke 12, Jesus told of a rich man who was so prosperous that he had to build new barns to store all of his stuff. The rich man said to himself, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.” But God said to him, “Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?” (Luke 12:19-20).
3. Despise instruction. “Fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Proverbs 1:7). They think they know it all, when in fact they have a lot to learn. “But fools hate knowledge” (Proverbs 1: 22). This kind of fool is commonly found in the home in the form of a teenager who will not listen to his father’s instructions. “A fool despises his father’s instruction” (Proverbs 15:5).
4. Enjoy starting arguments. “Any fool can start a quarrel,” and so every fool seems to enjoy doing so (Proverbs 20:3). Truly, “A fool’s lips enter into contention, and his mouth calls for blows” (Proverbs 18:6).
5. Make light of sin. Fools mock at sin (Proverbs 14:9). Sin is funny to fools. They don’t see the seriousness of it. So they laugh at filthy jokes, take pride in drunken parties, and brag about getting away with breaking laws or committing sexual immorality. “To do evil is like sport to a fool, but a man of understanding has wisdom” (Proverbs 10:23).
6. Act like you’re always right and everyone else is wrong. “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes” (Proverbs 12:15). “A fool has no delight in understanding, but in expressing his own heart” (Proverbs 18:2). “He who trusts in his own heart is a fool” (Proverbs 28:26).
7. Act as if you will never have to answer to God. Fools commit many sins, “Yet they say, The LORD does not see.” They are only kidding themselves. The God who created the eyes and the ears sees and hears all. “Understand, you senseless among the people; and you fools, when will you be wise? He who planted the ear, shall He not hear? He who formed the eye, shall He not see?” (Psalms 94:7-9).
The number seven is thought to be the number of completion or perfection. If a person is a fool in all of the seven ways listed above, I suppose that would make him the perfect fool. Hopefully, we can all see the folly of that.