The Merits of Wisdom

November 9, 2016

The Merits of Wisdom

How many times have you seen a squirrel fall out of a tree? Have you ever seen a bird get disorientated and crash head long into a tree and fall to the ground? If God gave the animals the wisdom to navigate without frequent mishaps, why is it that human beings so often fall into disgrace? Is it due to a lack of wisdom? If so, is it that God hasn’t given them sufficient wisdom?

Many mistakenly think that wisdom is acquired by means of education. Educated people often think they are superior to others and that they can do no wrong. Our observation, however, doesn’t bear that out. Some of our ivy league colleges could be called cesspools of iniquity. Those who study there often fall into failure and disgrace even before they graduate. Most of our leaders don’t lack for education, but some have made some serious mistakes. Even spiritual leaders sometimes fall into sin because that have made unwise decisions.

Wisdom helps us make the right decisions. It helps us make good use of our resources like time and money. The man who has wisdom has sense enough to avoid that which is detrimental to health, wealth, and happiness. Wisdom helps us in the pursuit of three things that are of great value in life. They are prosperity, pleasure, and peace.

Prosperity is augmented by two requirements. The first is our ability to make money. When it is time for young people to enter the work force it is essential that they have skill and ability that is needed. They will have them if they have made good use of the opportunities they have had to advance their education. Proverbs 1:7 says “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Wisdom plays an important part in a young person’s preparation for adulthood.

Another requirement for prosperity is that we use wisdom in the way we spend our money. Just as an example, there is wisdom in shopping at yard sales. You won’t find everything you need in life at yard sales, but there are often useful articles there that you can buy for a fraction of what you would pay at a retail store.

We also need wisdom in controlling our craving for pleasure. If not, it’s easy to waste time and money that could be better spent for more beneficial things. Proverbs 21:17 says “He that loveth pleasure shall be a poor man.” That, of course, is an in-ardent love of pleasure. There is a place for pleasure, but it must be kept in its place. Tho old saying is “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.”

Wisdom doesn’t restrict pleasure from us. Actually, it enhances it. It enables us to find pleasure in that which is to our benefit. It enables us to find more pleasure in giving than in getting. It enables us to find more pleasure in serving than in being served.

Wisdom also increases our peace. Proverbs 3:13 says “Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.” Then in verse 17 it says “Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.” Sometimes we have enemies when it isn’t our fault, but we don’t make enemies when we walk in the way of righteousness. Proverbs 16:25 says “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” He is no fool who lets God guide him in the way he should take. Proverbs 3:21-23 says “My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion: So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck. Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.”

I trust this is enough to convince you that you need to get wisdom, but how do we get it? Two verses in Proverbs chapter four tell us that we need to get wisdom. Proverbs 4:5 says “Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.” Again in verse 7 we read “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” Wisdom doesn’t come to us on its own. We must pursue it. The only wisdom we get without pursuing it is that which comes from the school of hard knocks. Sometimes we spend years paying for what we learned in that school. According to James 1:5, we can have wisdom just for the asking. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”

An excellent way to get wisdom is by reading, studying, and applying what we can learn from the book of Proverbs. He who has the right relationship with God will get wisdom. He has submitted himself to God and lets him put restrictions on his liberties.

Another excellent way to get wisdom is to make friends with the wise. We learn from our friends. Proverbs 13:20 says “He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.” A good local church is a good place to make that kind of friends. That is just one of many reasons why God has instituted the church. If you aren’t faithfully attending a good local church you are depriving yourself of an excellent source of wisdom.

There is no excuse for being without wisdom. Wisdom is personified in chapter eight of Proverbs. In verses 1-2 we read “Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice? She standeth in the top of high places, by the way in the places of the paths.” You would profit much from reading that entire chapter. Therefore, my friend, get wisdom and with all thy getting get understanding.

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