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Wednesday: Wise Men and Women — 6 Comments

  1. The psychology of belief is an interesting and challenging study. We did a bit of it when I had to take a unit of educational psychology as part of my teaching studies. When you get down to the question of how we come to believe, probably the greatest influence are wise people who are important to us, particularly in our early lives. Parents, teachers, friends church folk, all contribute to who we come to believe what we believe.

    Of particular importance to our development is the way those people handle the problematic and conflict situations that they encounter. This is where wisdom shows. It is easy to be consistent when life is running smoothly, but wisdom (and experience) shows when a problem has to be solved or a conflict resolved.

    There are a couple of issues to be considered here. For those of us who are parents or teachers, we need to understand that this is not a game where we can simply say, "I don't want to play anymore!" We are in for the duration.

    Secondly, how many of us abdicate our responsibility for wisdom by exposing our children to unfiltered influence. I do not mean that we should shelter our children from the rest of the world, but that we should ensure that they see us make wise choices about what they see and experience. It is important for them to see wisdom in action.

    Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.
    Forsake her not, and she shall preserve thee: love her, and she shall keep thee.
    Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Prov 4: 5-7 KJV

  2. 10 Biblical ways to get wisdom:
    1) Acknowledge your lack and ask God for it (James 1:5)
    2) Trust that God will supply it (James 1:6-7)
    3) Be a God fearing person (Ps 111:10)
    4) Be humble (James 3:13-16)
    5) Don't be hasty in making decisions (Prov 8:12)
    6) Be peaceful and considerate (James 3:17)
    7) Know the Word of the LORD (2Tim 3:15)
    8) Know the character of the LORD (Col 2:2-3)
    9) Proclaim and practice the Word of the LORD (Col 3:16)
    10) Let the pure wisdom of the LORD dwell in you (Prov 4:5-7

  3. While this story of Solomon highlights the importance of wisdom, many of the proverbs written by Solomon speak of its importance with a sense of urgency. For instance, Prov 4:7. We could also include Dan 2:21; 12:10, and Jesus' words in Matt 7:24; 25:1-12. Solomon sets a wonderful example for seeking this wisdom above all else, leading to his conclusion in Prov 4:7. We need to realize what true wisdom is, since there are many who boast of their wisdom that God considers foolish.

    We read that “the fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom”. Jesus' parable of the man building his house on a rock helps to illustrate the meaning of “the fear of the LORD” and the resulting wisdom this brings.

    We pass on what we live more than what we say, which may often be contrary to how we live. There is also the counsel in Prov 13:20.

    So what is this true wisdom? It seems to be more about HOW we live rather than WHAT we might know. We could say that being wise is defined by how we apply Truth in our daily living. With the virgins in the parable of Matt 25, the difference between the wise and the foolish was that the wise prepared, and did not run out of oil. They probably all knew the same "truth", and perhaps did equally well in school, but their actions made the difference. It's similar in Jesus' parable of Matt 7:24-27 isn't it? So, while wisdom may include what we KNOW, it is based on what we DO. Satan knows the law of God better than most, and knows the Truth with more certainty. He was THERE when God created this earth! Yet, do we consider him wise?

  4. It is interesting to notice again and again that there are always two sides present when learning about matters related to the Scriptures – the spiritual and the physical; the area of wisdom is included in this duality. I believe that it is not profitable to only know about Wisdom, Wisdom has to become an integral part of our being/living.

    The Proverbs are full of wisdom sayings, especially Chapter 8 and 9; interestingly, wisdom is paired with understanding. I noticed this when reading Maurice’s reference Prov.4:5-7KJV. “Get wisdom, get understanding . . . Wisdom is a principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting(wisdom), get understanding.” Are there two parts to Wisdom that have to function together for wisdom to be effective, or are wisdom and understanding one and the same? I think they are two sides of the same coin. Robert in his comments says: “So, while wisdom may include what we KNOW, it is based on what we DO”; I agree.

    I believe that true Wisdom is an inspiration from God, and with that, understanding(discernment) must also be from God. If we cannot receive wisdom out of darkness(our own mind), than darkness cannot reveal to us its meaning either.
    Prov.3:5KJV – “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not on thine own understanding.” When I pair this with Christ Jesus’ statement noted in John14:6KJV – “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me”, I see these two merging in their spiritual application - discernment by/through Wisdom revealed by God and applied through our trust and faith in God.

    If Salomon had been truly wise, would he not also have applied wisdom in his personal life? I perceive him to be wise/capable in the ways of his will’s choices in how to administer his government’s affairs, but not wise in his heart related to his personal life – I see him having practical wisdom, but not being careful or willing to extend this wisdom by loving God with all his heart through applying trust and faith to include the affairs of his personal life – Rom.2:29KJV; Rom.3:30KJV.

    In my opinion, in order for Wisdom to be spiritually and practically effectual in our lives, it has to be sourced by the Love of God and our Trust and Faith in His Love; when applying wisdom in spiritual discernment stemming from this understanding, we can be confident to discern/judge rightly and prudently.
    Oxford Languages Dictionary definition of ‘discernment’:
    1.The ability to judge well.
    2.(in Christian contexts) perception in the absence of judgment with a view to obtaining spiritual guidance and understanding.
    Once we know this Truth for ourselves, we can also teach it to our children.

  5. I feel like maybe today’s lesson overlooked the most important part about wisdom, that it can only come from God and that it is not for us to keep to ourselves. Luke 12:12 and Luke 21:15 are just two examples of where our wisdom comes from. Matthew 7:24 tells us “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them, will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock”. This is what wisdom is for. The story of Solomon is the perfect example of what happens when we forget where our wisdom comes from and when we forget to “hear these words of mine and do them”. Solomon had more wisdom than anyone in the world, people came from many places to experience his wisdom. When he began to stray from the Word of God, his life became a mess and he was led to follow after the gods of his many wives.
    Wisdom comes from God and as long as we stay closely connected to Him, that wisdom will be a blessing to all those around us.

  6. -The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Prov 1:7
    -Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. Prov 3:7.
    -Through wisdom is an house build; and by understanding it is established. Prov 24:3

    Wisdom of the Ant

    How can we learn wisdom and then pass it on to those who come after us? Why is this so important for us, as a people, to do?
    In the book of proverbs the ant is used allegorically. As we study the ant and how it lives and survive we can pattern our lives after it. It sends the sluggard (lazy, dont like to work, slothful, always like to sleep late and complaining )person to study how they work without a captain always breathing down their necks, yet they gather in for the winter. The ant only work in the day time or when the light is bright at night. They don't work when rain is falling. The ant cooperate with each other, during the cold seasons the ant have enough to stay at home and be warm. They help each other to carry their load. If we as humans adapt that same mindset we can be very happy people.

    Wisdom of humans
    All true wisdom comes from Jesus. Many claim to be wise because of this world education but when face to face with reality, they stumble and fall. Wisdom does not lean on ones own understanding, but have the law of the Lord always before them.


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