Over the last couple of blogs, we’ve looked at whether God intends for His people always to be healthy and wealthy. We’ve seen that scripture supports the idea that sometimes bad things happen to God’s people. They may suffer health issues, loss and financial hardship. So what about the last category? Does God intend for us to be wise?
Right back in the Garden of Eden, this desire for wisdom got Eve and consequently Adam into trouble, Genesis 3:6. Their actions in the garden resulted in them being banished from the garden God planted for them. So can we conclude that God did not want them to be wise or for us as Christians to be wise? Not necessarily.
What God required of his people in the garden was obedience to what He had commanded. It is also what he requires of us, today. Despite what Eve thought, she was not wise when she chose to listen to the serpent instead of God. Adam was not wise when he listened in this instance to the voice of his wife. Neither are we wise when we choose to listen to other voices, rather than what God tells us.
God intends for us to be wise but wise in His ways, not those of the world. More often than not, the two are at odds as we see in 1 Corinthians 1:19, 1 Corinthians 3:19. The wisdom God wants for His people is not earthly wisdom or cleverness, but wisdom in tune with God. To the world, this wisdom can appear as foolishness, 1 Corinthians 1:20-31.
Paul goes on to explain why it is necessary to follow God’s wisdom as laid out,‘so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God,’ 1 Corinthians 2:5, rather than on the wisdom of this age, 1 Corinthians 2:6. Too often, the wisdom of this world changes according to new thinking, fashions and discoveries. Once, people we believed the world was flat. Now they know differently. Once, people did not know enough to cure many diseases, like polio. Now they do.
And yet with all our knowledge and wisdom, people today still refuse to listen to God and accept the wisdom found in His Word. Why? Because they are blinded by the wisdom of the world and refuse to see that wisdom rests in Jesus and Him crucified. This is what Paul describes as the ‘hidden wisdom,’ 1 Corinthians 2:7.
To understand the wisdom of God we need to be spiritually attuned, 1 Corinthians 2:14-15. So, where and how can we avail ourselves of this wisdom? The book of Proverbs has a lot to say about wisdom. But the most important fact is ‘the fear of the lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction,’ Proverbs 1:7. Or as Psalm 111:10 puts it, ‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.’
But how do we acquire such wisdom? The book of James gives the answer, ‘If anyone of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him’ James 1:5. Proverbs 2:6 reiterates this point that ‘the Lord gives wisdom.’ So, God does want us to be wise.
James tells us what this wisdom that comes from above is like. It is, ‘first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy,’ James 3:17. Does this sound like the kind of wisdom you have? If so, praise God. If not, what will you do about it?
Bible references from the New American Standard Version
Please visit these related blogs