(Proverbs 1:32 KJV) For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.
How serious is “turning away” (waywardness NASB) (4878)? This verse says very clearly that it will “slay” (kill NASB) (2026). It is important for us to understand this if we have any influence on other believers. We need to be clear in our minds how serious this is.
Waywardness is the least threatening of the translations of this Hebrew word. It is also translated “apostasy”. It may seem to be just a little wandering but even small variations are the result of choice. It is possible that some people think a little wandering is not big deal. We have terms like “white lies”, “spin” and point of view to describe this. It is still a departure from the path.
Wandering is serious.
As for “slay”, it is pretty clear. It won’t just cause you to have a bad day. It isn’t just a little matter of breaking fellowship with God. It is death.
So? Examine yourself. Live in such a way that you can be a good example and have the moral authority to speak to others who are being cavalier about eternity.