"Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded" (Proverbs 13:13).
This is a great watershed principle of the divine economy. A person's attitude toward the word of God determines God's attitude toward him. When Adam and Eve despised God's commandment, they brought sin and death into the world. At the very end of God's word is another grave warning to anyone seeking to change the Scriptures, either by addition or subtraction (Revelation 22:18-19).
The Hebrew word translated "despiseth" is from a root meaning "not to respect" and is very similar to the word meaning "be ashamed of." It is a dangerous thing, especially when one knows and understands the basic teachings and claims of the Scriptures, for that person to begin to question, or explain away, or ignore these claims and teachings.
In this verse, the words "word" and "commandment" are essentially synonymous. Each is so used many times in Psalm 119, the great psalm that uniquely exalts the Scriptures. For example: "Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments" (Psalm 119:6), and "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word" (v.9).
There is such great blessing in the word! Note just a few of the testimonies concerning it in Psalm 119. "Thy word" is forever "settled in heaven," "a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path," and "true from the beginning" (vv.89, 105, 160). It is strange and sad that so many people today despise the word--many by fighting it, and many more simply by ignoring it. A genuine awe of the Holy Scriptures, recognizing that they constitute the very words of the living God, will bring eternal rewards, as well as a happy and productive life right now. HMM