(Proverbs 2:5 KJV) Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God.
“Then” (227) is the other side of the “if” in verse 1. We have had a long line of “if” statements. Too often people take these as unlimited promises that we can use and manipulate to our advantage. Not so. They are conditions of the promise, not the promise itself. We must do. We must obey. Why? People have debated over this since the beginning of theological debate. I am sure that Job already had a million internet sites bookmarked where he had left comments. It is one of the tensions we find in the faith. Our works cannot save us, yet they are demanded. Why again? Not to “earn” our salvation. It is clear we can’t do that. If nothing else it brings glory to God. Our obedience is a kind of “proof” that we are saved. This will be on my list of 100 questions when I get to heaven.
Do you want to understand? Then obey. Are you always asking, “Why?” Maybe the answer is right in front of you but you haven’t done your homework. One of the hardest things for math teachers to get students to do is show their work. The teacher doesn’t know if the student understands or is just a good guesser unless they show their work. The teacher can’t help the student learn unless they show their work. The student hates it but it makes a difference when things get complicated.
“If” precedes the “then”. If we work at it, “then” (227) we can “understand” (discern NASB) (995) what God has for us. We need to work on the “if” part of the promise and let God take care of the "then."
So? Are you willing to do your homework? Are you willing to show your work? Are you willing to do what you are told even if you don’t know all the “why’s”? It is called walking by faith. You can still ask. Just like givers, I think God loves a cheerful asker. But don’t refuse to obey.