Do you know anyone who isolates themselves from others? Maybe they have determined the church is full of hypocrites and they can do better on their own. But, “he who separates himself seeks his own desire, He quarrels against all sound wisdom” (18:1, NASB). The Bible gives the understanding that we need others:
- A community of believers can cause us to sharpen our skills (Proverbs 27:17).
- They are helpful in opening our eyes to blind spots that we possess (Acts 20:28).
- There is also the danger of living only for ourselves which causes us to lack sound wisdom (Proverbs 18:1).
In Proverbs 18:2, we meet the fool (as we have in previous chapters of proverbs)! This time we are subjected to his sentiments and his disregard for understanding a position that someone might hold. The double trouble of the fool is his “closed mind” and “open mouth.” “Fools have no interest in understanding; they only want to air their own opinions” (18:2, NLT).
Our next topic has been covered previously in the Book of Proverbs and will be again! It is one of the seven things that is detestable to the Lord. We have all experienced it and most certainly have regrettably participated in it. “The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels, And they go down into the innermost parts of the body” (18:8, NASB). Gossip (11:13; 16:28; 26:20) is like choice morsels, “things greedily devoured.” Hearing gossip is like eating a delicacy (something not everyone else hears). Therefore, like food being digested, gossiped news is assimilated in one’s inmost parts.
Where can you go for safety? God’s names in the Bible represent His character. Consider these: He is the God Who Sees, the God Who Provides, the God Who meets our needs, and the God Who heals. We can turn to this strong God just like we would run into a fortified city. “The name of the Lord is a strong fortress; the godly run to him and are safe” (18:10, NLT). The righteous turn to the name of the Lord, that is, to His revealed character. By putting their trust in Him they are as safe (29:25) as a person hiding from the enemy in a strong tower.
What about you? Do you desire to learn? Are you interested in increasing in knowledge and wisdom? Are you taking the necessary steps to gain God’s wisdom? “Intelligent people are always ready to learn. Their ears are open for knowledge” (18:15). The discerning and the wise are eager to increase their knowledge. They desire it with their hearts (15:14) and they listen for it with their ears (23:12).
This is best accomplished in a community of believers. Join others for worship each Sunday!
 Sid S. Buzzell, “Proverbs,” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures, ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck, vol. 1 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985).