Wisdom Calls in the Streets

July 2, 2018 at 6:10 PM

In the first few chapters of Proverbs, it is King Solomon who is believed to authored these words and expresses not only his concern for the lack of wisdom among too many in his day, but implores his son(s) to seek wisdom at all costs.

In fact, Solomon tells us that the fear of the Lord is the actually beginning of knowledge. I’ve dealt with the question of whether or not Christians should actually fear the Lord in a previous post, so we won’t go there again. Here, Solomon essentially tells us that if we understand rightly our relationship to God and our role under His authority, we would rightly fear offending Him. We offend Him through the many sins that we embrace.

In today’s culture, people like to compare themselves with other people in order to prove to themselves that they are not as “bad” as some, therefore, they are essentially “good” people. The entirety of the Bible preaches against this.

Sure, I could compare myself with a serial rapist or murderer and conclude that since I have not personally done those things, I’m much better off. In fact, compared to that individual, I’m far better, therefore I am “good.” But my understanding of “good” is solely based on a comparison to someone who appears to be more evil than I am. God clearly spells out for us throughout His Word (but specifically in places like the whole of the book of Romans), that our “goodness” is still an affront to God. Why is that? Because there is only one true standard and that standard is Jesus Christ.

When each person dies, they will be judged not by what other people did, but by how Jesus Himself lived, persevered, and never sinned. We can compare ourselves to other people but in the end, we are all the same – sinners by birth and practice. It doesn’t matter if one person murders and another robs or lies. The sins might be different but they are sins nonetheless and all sin is an affront to God’s righteous, sinless, and perfect nature.

God judges everyone by the exact same standard and again, that standard is found in the perfectly sinless life of Jesus. Too many people do not base their judgment on that standard. We can always find someone in life who appears “worse” than we are, can’t we? How many people look hard to find someone whom they consider to be “better” or more righteous? That doesn’t happen.

Solomon, in Proverbs, is working very hard to help his son(s) understand that a right view of God – fearing Him because of who He is and the power He wields – is the beginning of attaining true knowledge. That is the starting point. Understanding who God is and the power He wields helps us move toward true humility. It keeps us from becoming enamored with our selves and thinking that we are “good” enough.

Fear – understanding the awesome power that is God – creates a right frame of mind and allows us to gain knowledge. Knowledge is an understanding about the world in which we live. But wisdom is different from knowledge. Wisdom is the application of knowledge to many different situations and circumstances. A person can be very knowledgeable and still be an idiot in many things. Wisdom, on the other hand, takes actual knowledge and rightly applies it to any and all situations.

This is why you can listen to an intelligent person who might be absolutely godless and conclude that they are missing the big picture. They have become brainwashed and therefore brain-dead based on the knowledge they have, which has not been guided by wisdom, but by self-aggrandizement. This frame of reference is the norm for way too many people today. The result is what we variously call political correctness, emotional virtue, or Cultural Marxism. It is the opposite of truth but of course, people like it because it makes them feel noble. They follow lies.

Solomon says in Proverbs 1:20-22 (ESV):

20 Wisdom cries aloud in the street,
in the markets she raises her voice;
21 at the head of the noisy streets she cries out;
at the entrance of the city gates she speaks:
22 “How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple?
How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing
and fools hate knowledge?

This is very interesting as it pictures people who truly think they are very intelligent, yet as far as wisdom is concerned, they are thoroughly bereft. They have some knowledge certainly, but they do not posses wisdom and because of that, are unable to make good, decent, and worthwhile decisions in their life. They do what they feel is right based on some sort of unworkable system of “feels” that tells them how they should act and be in society.

The Internet is chock full of one example after another of people doing absolutely foolish and reprehensible things all based on their “knowledge” yet without any form of wisdom associated with it. This is our society today where people call for open borders, abolition of ICE, impeachment of Trump, and they pin their hopes on the Mueller investigation of President Trump, which alleges that there was collusion on Trump’s part with Russia allowing him to win the election. Never mind that it is very clear that Hillary and Obama were the ones who colluded with Russia in the sale of uranium and other favors. Putin and Russia already had great friends in the White House. Why would they destroy that known quantity for Donald J. Trump? It makes absolutely no sense at all, yet this is what people without any wisdom whatsoever believe.

Solomon also spends a good deal of time attempting to warn and dissuade his son(s) from entering in adultery. He paints a very nasty, vivid picture of the result of that liaison with an adulteress and stresses that they should avoid adultery at all costs.

16 So you will be delivered from the forbidden[a] woman,
from the adulteress with her smooth words,
17 who forsakes the companion of her youth
and forgets the covenant of her God;
18 for her house sinks down to death,
and her paths to the departed;
19 none who go to her come back,
nor do they regain the paths of life. (ESV)

For the fleeting momentary pleasures of illicit sex, the results are not worth it, states Solomon in no uncertain terms. It ends in death. What does that mean? Put simply, adultery is done to a person’s body. Anyone participating in that sin destroys part of himself. It is not worth the risk, says Solomon.

But the truth is that in order to benefit from any knowledge we have, wisdom must be present and it all starts with fearing God. Think about when you grew up. Did you obey your parents or did you try to get away with things? If you obeyed your parents you likely did so out of a mixture of fear and respect. If you disobeyed your parents, it was likely due to a complete lack of fear and respect. You didn’t care what they thought. You didn’t care what they said. You didn’t fear them and having a fear of authority is actually healthy. It’s what makes and keep people law-abiding. Without it, anarchy is the result.

Solomon works hard to help his son(s) understand that it is extremely important to gain as much wisdom as possible. Wisdom allows people to have discernment and when discernment completes its work in each situation, we are better off because of it.

Without wisdom, we have next to nothing. Oh, we might have knowledge, but wisdom is what helps us apply that knowledge. Knowledge by itself is just memorization of facts. Wisdom applies those facts to our lives. Without it, we truly perish.

Seek wisdom. How is that accomplished? One of the best ways is to ensure that you are reading God’s Word daily. Put down the “devotional” book and pick up God’s Word for a while. Read His very words and thoughts. Learn to understand God, as far as He has revealed Himself to us. Devotionals can be good, but they are no substitute for God’s Word. Some writers have felt “inspired” to write this or that book and I can say that about myself as well. However, my goal has always been not to supplant God’s Word, but to push people back onto God’s Word. If reading any book can actually get you there, wonderful. But again, there is no substitute for reading, meditating, memorizing, and adoring God’s Word.

While there are many avenues whereby we might gain knowledge, God is the only source of wisdom. Book learning will not grant you wisdom. It will only provide knowledge. Wisdom comes from God (James 1:5; 3:17). God and God alone provides wisdom, but we must want it. We must seek it.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. (ESV)

God will give wisdom to us if we are earnest and honest about wanting it. Why would we want wisdom? Do we want it so that we can impress our friends and relatives? No, the only real reason we should want wisdom and the only real reason God will provide it to us is if we want it for the sole purpose of serving Him. If we look carefully at Solomon’s request at the beginning of his reign as Israel’s last king prior to the splitting of the kingdom into the north and the south (Israel and Judah), Solomon was very clear that he wanted wisdom to know how to rule God’s people (2 Chronicles 1). Solomon didn’t want wisdom for himself. He wanted to be a good ruler, a fair king who treated the Israelites fairly and evenly. It is good to know that the result of this was that peace reigned during Solomon’s entire rule over Israel. It was only after he died that things began to fall apart.

You have knowledge? Good. You have wisdom? Better. Knowledge without wisdom can’t really accomplish much spiritually. This is Solomon’s point. We need to be spiritually wise before our God and the only way to get there is through gaining God-given wisdom. There is no other way.

Wisdom is calling to you. Are you listening?

Entry filed under: Atheism and religion, christianity, Cultural Marxism, Emotional virtue, eternity, Political Correctness, Politically Correct, Politics, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology, salvation. Tags: , , , , .

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