Without wisdom I am prone to making negative decisions that can affect not alone me, but also all those around me. Without wisdom in my life I know I am doomed to failures which I could have easily avoided…
Knowledge is good but there is a vast difference between ‘knowledge’ (having the facts) and ‘wisdom’ (applying those facts to life). We can accumulate great philosophies, common sense and knowledge – but without wisdom it is all useless.
Wisdom I know is social. She seeks her fellows. But beauty is jealous, and always bears the presence of a rival - Thomas Jefferson
I can easily tell if a person has wisdom by how they use their words, priorities, finances, values, friendships and where they have placed God in their lives.
Wisdom is the principle thing - therefore get wisdom!
God alone is wise - we are not wise without Him. When we don’t know what to do we need to ask God. 'Give me wisdom Lord. Show me what to do.' Wisdom knows what to do, when to do it and how to do it. Wisdom behaves right in life; it understands what to do in every situation. With less effort and more wisdom we will find ourselves succeeding in all areas of our lives.
But What is Wisdom?
Wisdom is the highest form of thinking – applied disciplines.
Wisdom is choosing right instead of wrong, good instead of evil, truth over lies.
Wisdom is acknowledging your Creator, seeking Salvation, and living a life of righteousness, obedience and Christlikeness.
Knowledge is limited and is focused on self.
Wisdom has an eternal mindset and focuses on everyone else.
The benefits of wisdom are extraordinary – riches and honour, justice, God’s favour, life and peace:
Happy (blessed, fortunate, enviable) is the man who finds skillful and godly Wisdom, and the man who gets understanding [drawing it forth from God's Word and life's experiences], for the gaining of it is better than the gaining of silver, and the profit of it better than fine gold. Skillful and godly Wisdom is more precious than rubies; and nothing you can wish for is to be compared to her. Length of days is in her right hand, and in her left hand are riches and honor. Her ways are highways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who lay hold on her; and happy (blessed, fortunate, to be envied) is everyone who holds her fast.
I have found that there is a BIG difference between knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge is limited, biased, convenient, conditional and circumstantial. Wisdom is deep, strong, unconditional and a foundation for applying good sense above comfort and convenience.
The characteristics of wisdom are broad and can be seen in many ways – through self-discipline, generosity, helping the poor, doing good, faithfulness, and hard work with your own hands.
Wisdom cries aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the markets; She cries at the head of the noisy intersections [in the chief gathering places]; at the entrance of the city gates she speaks: How long, O simple ones [open to evil], will you love being simple? And the scoffers delight in scoffing and [self-confident] fools hate knowledge? If you will turn (repent) and give heed to my reproof, behold, I [Wisdom] will pour out my spirit upon you, I will make my words known to you.
Wisdom is choosing safety over stupidity at the risk of not being ‘cool’. Wisdom is choosing to walk away from a fight – to walk away from peer pressure to smoke – to not get behind the wheel of a car when you have been drinking alcohol. Wisdom could well be the greatest power in the universe – to choose life or death…
Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; only fools despise wisdom and discipline.
Wisdom is from God, knowledge is from man. We must understand that wisdom comes only from Him; a God-given gift that is far superior to any self-knowledge we can obtain in our finite minds.
To fear God is to respect Him, honour and to understand His greatness in comparison to our limitations in weaknesses, intellect and understanding. We are put in our place that He is the Creator and we are not.
Wisdom is essentially applying God’s ways and God’s methods to our everyday lives. We must understand this fundamental principle - His ways are good, perfect, Truth and right.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
The psalmist wrote with great passion and excitement How I delight in your commands, how I love them! I honour and love your commands; I meditate on your principles… (Psalms 119:47vs48).
Consider this – nine tenths of all sexual diseases would be eliminated if mankind were to conform to God’s ways or sexual purity (1 Cor 6vs18).
Consider this – all wars would end if all people obeyed His ways of loving our neighbour (Mark 12vs31), being rich in good works (1 Tim 6vs18) and living in peace with one another (1 Thess 4vs11).
And consider this – a world with no murders, violence, greed, adultery (1 Cor 6vs9), poverty (Luke 18vs22), disharmony (Matt 7vs12), drunkenness, gossip or slander (Romans 1vs29) – all of these would be non-existent if everyone followed God’s ways. His ways are to protect us, His ways are good.
We need to understand that the foundation of wisdom is acknowledging our Creator and honouring Him in our everyday lives. The dangers of ignoring wisdom should draw us to desiring it even more.
I called you so often, but you wouldn’t come. I reached out to you, but you paid no attention. You ignored my advice and rejected the correction I offered. So I will laugh when you are in trouble! I will mock you when disaster overtakes you - when calamity overtakes you like a storm, when disaster engulfs you like a cyclone, and anguish and distress overwhelm you. “When they cry for help, I will not answer. Though they anxiously search for me, they will not find me. For they hated knowledge and chose not to fear the Lord ... they must eat the bitter fruit of living their own way … Fools are destroyed by their own complacency. But all who listen to me will live in peace, untroubled by fear of harm.
Solomon and Moses
Solomon was the wisest man who ever lived – because he prayed for wisdom! Newly crowned as king the task ahead of him was great, its challenges high and its problems numerous. Before he made any decisions he seeked God and looked for help.
1 Kings 3:5-15
At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you." … Solomon answered, O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?"
The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. So God said to him, "Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for - both riches and honor - so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings. And if you walk in my ways and obey my statutes and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life."
Just like Solomon, our lives involve many decisions, challenges and a never ending cycle of problems that need Wisdom.
And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds
Moses was learned and highly educated in words and deeds. He was reared as the son of Pharaoh's daughter and would be taught in all the accomplishments of his time. We know from the researches of the Egyptologists that at that time there were great universities for the education of all who were expected to engage in public employments.
However, Moses was not ready for the call of God on his life. It was in the wilderness and an encounter from God at 80 years of age when he changed history by leading the Israelites out of Egypt and destroying Pharaoh’s army by parting the Red Sea.
If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
Secular wisdom and Godly wisdom are chalk and cheese. The wisdom of man is foolishness to God. His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are greater than our thoughts. I believe if we grab hold of this principle in our lives, we will soar and do impossible things in our lifetime – for His Glory.
1 Corinthians 1:18; 21; 25
For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God…For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe…This foolish plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God's weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength…
In summary, we need wisdom, wisdom comes from God, therefore seek Him who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him in full.