May 25, 2016 • By Ed Wrather
Arise, O God, plead Your own cause; remember how the foolish man reproaches You (mock you – NIV) daily. – Psalm 74:22 NKJV.
A quick-tempered man acts foolishly…. – Proverbs 14:17a NKJV.
The devising of foolishness is sin…. – Proverbs 24:9a NKJV.
In Pakistan, a trial was disrupted when Constable Liaquat Ali demonstrated how a grenade (evidence in the trial) could easily be detonated by pulling the pin. It was thought that the grenade had been disarmed, but no one knew that for sure. Everyone knows now that the grenade was not disarmed, because it exploded. The Constable and a court assistant were injured with the Constable receiving injuries to his hands, but he has been released from the hospital. What did the judge do? The judge fell off his chair, according to witnesses. (Daily Pakistan 04.11.16; The Guardian 04.12.16)
There is an old word which describes well the decision making abilities of someone who pulls a pin on a grenade in a courtroom without know for sure that it has been disarmed. That word is, harebrained. The Free Dictionary defines harebrained as something that is: “rash, foolish, or badly thought out.” The earliest recorded use of the word harebrained is from 1548 in Scotland and England. The original meaning was to slam the actions of someone by saying that they only had a brain the size of a hare (rabbit).
There are many things that could be described as being harebrained according to the Bible. David recognizes that his sin was harebrained by saying, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done; but now, I pray, O Lord, take away the iniquity of Your servant, for I have done very foolishly (2 Samuel 24:10 NKJV).” Sin is always going to be a harebrained thing to participate in. Knowingly participating in sin is like pulling the pin on a grenade, the results are never good.
James describes how our words can sometimes be like an exploding grenade. In James 3:5-6 we are told, “Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.” Opening our mouths and saying the wrong things can at times be like pulling the pin on a grenade. The writer of Proverbs says, “Wise people store up knowledge, but the mouth of the foolish is near destruction (Proverbs 10:14).”
The two most harebrained things of all time is to mock God (Psalm 74:22), and to consider the only way of salvation as being foolishness. “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God (1 Corinthians 1:18 NKJV).”