“The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.” (Proverbs 14:27)
This beautiful phrase, “fountain of life,” is used several times in the Old Testament, serving as a metaphor to illuminate a number of important aspects of spiritual faith and experience. Our text stresses “the fear of the Lord” as providing deliverance from death to life, picturing this new life as flowing from a heavenly spring.
A very similar verse is Proverbs 13:14: “The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.” Thus, the fear of the Lord is somehow tantamount to “the law of the wise.” Those who are wise will fear the Lord, and thus receive living water from “the fountain of life.”
King David penned the wonderful truth of Psalm 36:9: “For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.” “God is light” (1 John 1:5), so “the fountain of life” becomes the source also of all true light, whether physical or spiritual. “In him was life; and the life was the light of men” (John 1:4).
The same word translated “fountain” is rendered as “well” in Proverbs 10:11: “The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked.” Thus, when a believer has received life from the divine fountain, his testimony becomes a fountain of life to others.
The Lord Himself is the fountain of life in Jeremiah’s prophecy, but the supposed people of God have refused to drink. “For my people . . . have forsaken me the fountain of living waters” (Jeremiah 2:13; 17:13).
Nevertheless, this fountain is still there for all who will come. The very last promise in the Bible has to do with this great fountain. That fountain yields “a pure river of water of life, . . . proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. . . . And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely” (Revelation 22:1, 17). HMM