Knowledge and wisdom are both learned disciplines. Having one doesn’t guarantee the other. Wisdom is acting upon the knowledge you have, but depending on the source, it’s benefits may be minimal.
The book of Proverbs, found in the Bible, is a collection of truisms, written in short poetic refrains. The context of this book is practical wisdom for righteous living. Being wise is a vital quality in the life of a Christian.
One of the keywords in Proverbs is “wisdom” or “wise.” It comes from the Hebrew word which means skill. In context, it means having the skill in the art of godly living.
“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.” Ephesians 1:17
Obtaining wisdom leads to knowing God better.
Truth be told, we all begin a relationship with God without any previous experience. Righteous living requires training. Therefore, God has given us the Bible and the Holy Spirit so that we can become proficient in following Him.
Proverbs 24:13-20, we are given four sets of wisdom quips to aid us in godly living. In the first set of wise quotes, wisdom is illustrated as honey. During the time this was written, honey was a highly desirable ingredient in middle eastern cuisine.
Honey is not only sweet and pleasing to the palate, but it has medicinal values. Ancient Egyptians used honey as an embalming fluid and for dressing wounds.
Today we know that honey;
- Has antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties.
- It can be used as a natural cough suppressant.
- It can treat acid reflux, fight infections.
- Locally harvested honey can help you with seasonal allergies.
So when Proverbs says that honey is like wisdom, it is saying that wisdom can have a myriad of good effects on your life! The benefits of wisdom far outweigh the price paid to obtain it.
Verse 14 says that “if” we find wisdom, there are two promises that come with it.
#1 “If you find it, there will be a future.”
The word “future” conveys the idea that your best days are ahead of you not behind you. The word find means to secure it or to acquire it. This means we learn it and live it.
#2 “…your hope will not be cut off.”
The church is to be the source of hope in the world. As Pastor Matthew Barnett has said, “We need to be hope dealers in the world.”
- Hope is a powerful motivator.
- When our strength is fleeting, hope can keep us going.
- When hope is gone, we are done.
That phrase cut-off means to eliminate or destroy. Acquiring wisdom cultivates an endless supply of hope that will not be destroyed.
The second set of wisdom truisms makes the case that our actions reveal who we are, not our words. If we are all talk and no walk, we’re a hypocrite.
- Actions are the fruit of our life.
- We are not separated from our actions.
- Our character and nature are revealed by actions.
The unwise person plots to take what others have. They wait for an opportunity to attack. Coveting and desiring what others have creates a toxic attitude that will distort your perception of right and wrong.
“For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.” James 3:16
But notice that the person identified as righteous isn’t perfect, he falls. Falling has a variety of implications, which include morally and or sinfully.
Not just once or twice or even three times, but SEVEN times.
Seven is the number of completeness which can be rendered as “very many times.”
The distinguishing mark between the righteous and unrighteous is that the righteous get up from their failure, which is a symbol of repentance. The righteous person learns from their mistakes, identifies their triggers and weaknesses and becomes are self-aware.
Want to increase your wisdom quotient? Join me in going through the book of Proverbs in 31 days. Click this link let’s get wise!