Proverbs 19:23

ESV The fear of the LORD leads to life, and whoever has it rests satisfied; he will not be visited by harm.
NIV The fear of the LORD leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble.
NASB The fear of the Lord leads to life, So that one may sleep satisfied, untouched by evil.
CSB The fear of the Lord leads to life; one will sleep at night without danger.
NLT Fear of the Lord leads to life, bringing security and protection from harm.
KJV The fear of the LORD tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil.

What does Proverbs 19:23 mean?

A "proverb" is a short, general-case statement of wisdom. Unlike prophecies or commands, proverbs are not absolute. Much as when a doctor tells a patient, "eat well and exercise and you'll live longer," advice is not a promise. Healthy exercisers can still suffer accidents and illnesses—but not nearly so often as those who ignore the doctor's advice. This statement is not a magical spell, protecting those who believe in God from all harm (John 16:33). Rather, it's an echo of the main theme of the book of Proverbs: that following godly wisdom gives a person the best likelihood for success in this life and prepares them for eternity (Proverbs 1:7; 3:3–8; 8:35–36; 10:16; 14:32).

The person who "rests" in God exhibits a sense of contentment and security (Psalm 46:1; Proverbs 14:26; 1 Timothy 6:6). These attitudes contrast the panic and greed which come with a worldly perspective (1 Peter 5:7; Matthew 6:25, 31–33).

This "fear" is not terror or panic. It's a reverent, humble respect which acknowledges who and what God is. The cornerstone of that recognition leads a person to Christ for salvation. To "fear" the Lord is to believe on Him. John 3:16 promises that whoever believes on the Lord Jesus Christ has everlasting life and will not suffer eternal death. Romans 5:1 declares that believers have peace with God. Christians do not lead trouble-free lives (John 16:1–4 1 Peter 4:12–16), but they have hope amidst suffering (Romans 8:18). Romans 8:31 teaches that God is ultimately on the side of Christians, therefore no one can gain ultimate victory over them. In all hard situations, Paul insists, "we are more than conquerors through him who loved us" (Romans 8:37). He concludes that "neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:38–39).
What is the Gospel?
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