Monday, May 7, 2012

The Five W's of Wisdom

“But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
James 3:17

Wisdom is mentioned all throughout the Bible, but what is Wisdom? Where do we get Wisdom? Who defined Wisdom? When is it important? And finally, why is Wisdom important?
            First off, what is Wisdom? As some of you might have already guessed from some of my previous articles, defining terms is very important. The Hebrew word translated as Wisdom is Hakam, which is can be literally translated as “to live skillfully.”1 The difference between Knowledge and Wisdom; Knowledge is knowing about something, what it is, what it does, Wisdom is the correct application of that knowledge. To use a one of my favorite quasi-jokes to define the difference; ‘Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.’
            The second and third questions are closely related, where do we get Wisdom, and who defined Wisdom? The answer to both questions is God. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.” (Proverbs 9:1 NKJV) We can only gain wisdom if we fear (respect) God and His commandments. Solomon, the wisest man (excepting Christ) who ever lived, gained all of his wisdom and understanding from God. God created wisdom before he created the world (Proverbs 8:22-30). As a quick side note, Wisdom is not synonymous with Christ, and therefore this passage does not support the claim that Christ is a created being (it’s incredible the twisting of Scripture, you would never have even thought of, that you can find when researching). Back on topic; Wisdom was created by God for man, for the purpose (like all things) to bring to glory to him. Since Wisdom is an idea, how could God create it? God so supersedes our human understanding in so many ways; God not only created the universe out of nothing, created all methods of communication, created thought itself, He even created time. The thought of creating time is so out of the grasp of our minds that it just shows how powerful He is. Creating an idea, or a universe, would be an insignificant act for Him. “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, it is high, I cannot attain it.” (Psalm 138:6 NKJV)
            When is Wisdom important? It is important whenever we act, whenever we think, always. Every single thing we think or do should be weighed with wisdom and discretion.
“   . . . You [God] know my sitting down and my rising up;
You understand my thought afar off.
   You comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways.
   For there is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.” (Psalm 139:2-4 NKJV)
God sees and knows all things. We need to live in a wise manner at all times because God is with us at all times.
            Why is Wisdom important? Wisdom is the correct application of knowledge, the ability to “live skillfully”. Wisdom was created by God for His glory and is only attainable by the fear of the LORD. Wisdom is always important; everything we say or do should be weighed with wisdom. God created wisdom for His glory, and our goal in life should be to bring him glory and honor. “Whether therefore you eat, or drink [or think], or whatsoever you do, do all to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31 NKJV)
            God has created us completely for his glory and has given us the gift of Wisdom to glorify Him with. He has complete knowledge of our thoughts and actions and ,with His grace, we will be able to live with wisdom and say;
“Search me, God, and know my heart;
   Test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me,
   And lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalms 139:23-24 NKJV)

     Leaping Lizard


Image by Leaping Lizard


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