How do you define true wisdom?
Wisdom is an English word and is derived from an old Anglo-Saxon word that means “to see”. It is a moral quality and not necessarily an indicator of intelligence.
In James it says true wisdom is “believing God, doing what God’s word tells us and living a righteous life. I like these scriptures because it gives us a living description rather than just a definition. It is pretty clear to me that for wisdom to be in the truest form, it needs to be based on the word of God.
Earthly wisdom is based on vanity, ours. Earthly wisdom is self-righteous and self-serving and quite often does not serve us well. While true wisdom comes from God, earthly wisdom comes from Satan.
Psalm 111:10 says that “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise.”
Live Well-Live Wisely- Live Humbly
These scriptures (James 3: 13-18) come immediately after James talks to us about our words and how they affect us, our lives and the lives of others. There is so much to learn here.
If we couple speaking in a manner that is pleasing to God with living our lives in a manner that is pleasing to God, we win!
Actually, it seems that one begets the other.
Ambition, boasting, twisting truth to make yourself look good and look wise isn’t wisdom (except the earthly kind) in fact it can be quite dumb, hurtful, painful, and embarrassing when the truth comes out, and it always does.
How often do we embellish the truth to make ourselves look better, how often do we submit to blind ambition with no worry about how it affects anyone else? As long as we achieve our goal, we can usually justify it, at least to ourselves. How often do we talk ourselves up and talk our abilities up knowing full well it is not the truth? Quite often I suspect.
Real wisdom comes from God only, it is doing deeds with the humility that wisdom brings, it is getting along with others, it is being gentle, reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings. Wisdom from heaven is pure, peaceful, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and produces good fruit.
We are bombarded by philosophies and methodologies of the world, in an attempt to divert our attention from the true wisdom we find in God’s word.
The scripture also says true wisdom in not hot one day, cold the next and not two faced. Ouch point taken. Steady, strong and true describes the wisdom born of God.
Oh my how I need to practice this at work at home, in my marriage, with my children, friends and acquaintances. Every word I speak, every move I make in this life should be measured against the standard of true wisdom.
Am I going to measure up every time? Not a chance, but how nice and reassuring is it that I have a loving God that has given me a living description and boundaries and goals to live up to and to help me do it.
True wisdom I believe, is measured by the depth of a person’s character.
Wisdom born of God is rich and infinite, it does not need supplemented by any wisdom we can find in the world.
True wisdom begins, lives in and ends with God. Anchor your wisdom there.