The word despise would mean looking down on something or someone. We usually hear these words like “some rich people despises the poor,” which would mean that they are treating them very low. They look on themselves as very high in the society and treat everyone else as rags. By doing this, they lost humility among themselves. No one has the right to despise other people whatever our status in life is. (Proverbs 21:4) “An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin.”
But how can people despise their own soul? How can people put their soul in a very low and worst situtation? What will happen if people despise their souls?
How did the Bible explain those who despise their own souls?
Solomon said, “He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul: but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding. ” (Proverbs 15: 32) It is clear in this verse that if a person refuses to obey God’s instruction is a clear sign of despising one’s soul. God’s instructions are meant to be obeyed and not to be refused. Sadly, many have chosen “not” to give importance on the words of God.
There’s a lot of people who did not listen to God’s commands, and this made God furious. “Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded; But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof” (Proverbs 1: 24-25)
Instead of receiving and obeying God’s commands and instructions, many people have chosen to listen to what others say they would do. They have chosen to listen to their own thoughts and decisions. Some people believe that their knowledge is more important than obeying God’s will. But these people lack the understanding about God’s will. They did not give importance to His commands and will simply because they did not understand what God’s will is. “Proud and haughty scorner is his name, who dealeth in proud wrath.” (Proverbs 21:24)
Others hate being rebuked just like a kid being scolded by their parents. They don’t want to be corrected. “They hate him that rebuketh in the gate, and they abhor him that speaketh uprightly.” (Amos 5: 10)
What will happen to these people who despise their souls by refusing God’s commands and will?
Since they chose to listen to their own will, we do not expect these people to do God’s will. Therefore, instead of doing what is right and just, these people would do the opposite, perverting from what is holy in God’s eyes. “Let favour be shewed to the wicked, yet will he not learn righteousness: in the land of uprightness will he deal unjustly, and will not behold the majesty of the LORD.” (Isaiah 26:10)
God doesn’t allow this people to dwell in His sight. God’s mercy is for those who follow His will, but His wrath is for those don’t know how to obey Him and in due time, they will receive judgment. “Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded; But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh; When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you. Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:” (Proverbs 1: 24-28)
Their end will be bitter because they will suffer from the hands of God who punishes. It will be too late for them at that time to repent. “And thou mourn at the last, when thy flesh and thy body are consumed, And say, How have I hated instruction, and my heart despised reproof; And have not obeyed the voice of my teachers, nor inclined mine ear to them that instructed me!” (Proverbs 5: 11-13)
Every wicked thing we do will receive punishment from God and no one can escape from His wrath. All will be revealed and no one can hide from Him. “But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.” (Colossians 3:25)
The punishment will be eternal, and sufferings will be endless. “In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;” (2 Thessalonians 1: 8-9)
But how will God reward those who listen and obey His commands and instructions?
God is a God of justice. If He will punish those who disobey Him, then those who listen will be rewarded. The reward will be eternal, happiness and contentment will be endless. “The ear that heareth the reproof of life abideth among the wise. He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul: but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding.” (Proverbs 15: 31-32) “But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.” (Proverbs 1: 33) “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.” (Psalms 23:6) (1 Tim. 3: 15)
Long before, God instructed us to listen and obey all His instructions and commands. If we love our own soul, by following His will we are taking good care of it. Only those who follow Him will inherit His kingdom and will dwell in heaven eternally. “Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.” (Proverbs 19: 20) “He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered. (Proverbs 28: 26)