Psalms 111:10

10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever.

Psalms 111:10 Meaning and Commentary

Psalms 111:10

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom
The fear of the Lord, whose name is revered, is not a fear of his judgments here or hereafter, but of his goodness and grace; it is a reverential affection for him, a fiducial fear of him, a fear of offending so good a Being as he is; and it includes all religious worship of him, inward and outward, private and public; and at this true wisdom begins; a man begins to be wise when he fears the Lord, and not till then; this is his highest wisdom, and this is, as it may be rendered, "the chief of wisdom" F9, the principal part of it; see ( Proverbs 9:10 ) .

A good understanding have all they that do his commandments;
or "that do them" F11; the fear of the Lord and wisdom; that exercise them, that do as they oblige and direct to; so R. Moses in Aben Ezra connects the words; such have a good understanding of the Lord, know him as the object of their fear and reverence, and of their duty to him, and of their own interest, it being their wisdom to fear him; since by attending to their duty, to the word and ordinances of God, such arrive to a greater degree of knowledge and understanding of divine things. Some render it "good success F12" or "prosperity", as Kimchi; such usually have prosperity in soul and body, in things temporal and spiritual; see ( Joshua 1:8 ) .

His praise endureth for ever;
or "its praise" F13; the praise of the fear of the Lord, of divine wisdom, and of a good understanding; just as of circumcision in the heart, ( Romans 2:29 ) or the praise of him that does the above things, that does the commandments of God, or acts under the fear of God, and as a wise man, ( 1 Corinthians 4:5 ) or rather the praise of God, which shall be given him by angels and men now and for evermore, as it ought to be; and to stir up to which is the design of the psalm throughout; and which men are encouraged to from the works and word of God, from his name, nature, and covenant, and from his blessings and acts of grace and goodness.


F9 (hmkx tyvar) "caput sapientiae", Junius & Tremellius; "vel praecipuum", Cocceius; "summa", Michaelis.
F11 (Mhyve) "facientibus ea", Pagninus, Montanus, Junius & Tremelilius
F12 (bwj lkv) "successus optimus", Junius & Tremellius; so Ainsworth.
F13 (wtlht) "quorum laus", Tigurine version; i.e. "uniuscujusque facientium", Gejerus, Michaelis.

Psalms 111:10 In-Context

8 They are established forever and ever, to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.
9 He sent redemption to his people; he has commanded his covenant forever. Holy and awesome is his name.
10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever.

Footnotes 1

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.