Desire VS. Knowledge

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As I was searching for today’s verse, I couldn’t help but notice that Proverbs 19:2 was contrary to some of my currently held beliefs. The verse reads,Desire without knowledge is not good—how much more will hasty feet miss the way!” Therefore, I decided to examine this verse and put my current beliefs to the test.

Have you ever helped or watched a child learn to walk? Most likely you have. Before they started walking did you send them to walking school or give them a book to read? Of course not, they simply saw others walking, had a DESIRE to do the same and after some or many failed attempts, they walked. What if they had the knowledge to walk but no desire? Would they ever walk? It’s hard to say, maybe one day out of necessity they would begin to walk but isn’t it true that necessity would actually fuel their desire?  This is just one reason that at first blush, this verse caught my attention and made absolutely no sense to me. I could think of many other situations where DESIRE must come first. I can also recall plenty of circumstances where people with a burning desire, have paralyzed themselves into inactivity while they tried to learn EVERYTHING they could about a topic before taking action.

Now before you persecute me, let me say that I do understand the intention of the verse. It means that desire, without the necessary knowledge required, will not take you to your intended goal. We are being warned that it is better to seek knowledge and combine that knowledge with our desire so that we can avoid mistakes and wasted time/effort which will lead our efforts astray.

Since I really wasn’t resonating with the “Desire without knowledge is not good” part of the verse, I decided to compare other translations for this verse against NIV version above. When I did, I found the results absolutely fascinating! The irony is that if I had only DESIRED to read the Bible and not seek KNOWLEDGE, I may have missed the mark!

As I have mentioned in previous posts, the Bible has been translated MANY times. Since I prefer an easier read, I refer to and read the NIV (New International Version) translation. However, similar to “The Telephone Game”, where everyone in a circle whispers a secret to each other until it gets back to the original person, the original message is often times, lost in translation.

Below I have posted the same verse translated 36 different ways. I challenge you to read all of them. I offer you this challenge so that you can see for yourself how important it is to seek knowledge, conduct research and view topics and points of view from all perspectives BEFORE you make up your mind on what is right for you. Far too often in my life I have taken information and people’s words at face value. For example, have you ever read a news article and simply believed that because it was published in your favorite newspaper or the message was reported by your favorite news reporter, that what it was that you were reading or listening to was fact; only find out days later that they got the story wrong? I’m pretty sure that at one point or another we have all made that mistake.

Today’s verse taught me the importance of waiting to make a judgement until you seek more information. It taught me that it is okay to “challenge” popular thought, even if it is written in the Bible. It also taught me that above all else, I have to trust MY gut, avoid popular consensus and do the research to make my OWN decisions. I hope you will too!

Have a great day!


Compare Translations for Proverbs 19:2


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