The Incomparable Worth of Wisdom
For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it. (Proverbs 8:11)All fathers desire wisdom for their children and Solomon was no exception. This Scripture is from the king to his son. "My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee" (Proverbs 2:1). He wants his son to prosper, and find fulfillment, so he advises, "Son, if you will only listen to your dad, I will show you how."
These are also words for sons and daughters of the King. If you are a child of the King, you believe this counsel is not merely the words of Solomon, but the words of God speaking His wisdom through Solomon. These are wise words to all the "King's kids."
Wisdom Is the Product of the Spirit
"To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding; to receive the instruction of wisdom..." (Proverbs 1:2-3a).
There is a teacher and in the case of true wisdom, that instructor is the Holy Spirit of God, Whom the Bible calls "the Spirit of wisdom."
Genuine wisdom is supernatural. Yet it is important to understand the difference between wisdom and common sense. Common sense is natural. Wisdom is uncommon sense. It originated with God, resides in God, emanates from God, and is given as a gift from God.
The difference between wisdom and knowledge is this:
• Knowledge is needed to pass the test in school, but wisdom is needed to pass the test in life.
• Knowledge is learned; wisdom is given.
• Knowledge comes by looking around; wisdom comes by looking up.
• Knowledge comes by study; wisdom comes by meditation with God.
• Wisdom teaches one how to apply his knowledge.
Wisdom is not synonymous with knowledge nor is it a substitute for knowledge. Rather, it is the product of the Spirit. Some things in life cannot be learned — those must be given. I would never minimize a proper formal education, but there are certain matters no school can teach you. And in a greater sense there are issues about life that can only be learned from God.
Wisdom Is the Presence of the Savior
To know wisdom... (Proverbs 1:2a).
To know wisdom is to know Jesus Christ. And therefore, if you do not have Jesus, you cannot have wisdom. Paul well expressed this inescapable truth: "But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God" (1 Corinthians 1:24). Christ is the wisdom of God. This was the idea John the apostle conveyed when he wrote his Gospel:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.... And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. (John 1:1,14)
The Greek word translated "Word" was logos. Logos means a thought or a concept or the expression or utterance of that thought. Jesus, the living Word, is God and is therefore the perfect expression and extension of the divine wisdom. Real wisdom is discovered only in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ — the wisdom of God, the Word of God, God Himself.
The Bible notes that the great are not necessarily the wise. "For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness..." (1 Corinthians 1:18a). "For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom [worldly wisdom apart from God] knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching [the thing preached] to save them that believe" (1 Corinthians 1:21).
God is so good and so wise that you will never be able to know Him by human wisdom, human perception, or human understanding. No one has a head start on God. All of the philosophers, theologians, and scientists of history could never discover Him through human wisdom.
And one can never know the wisdom of God until Christ, the living wisdom of God, is in their heart. Even the Old Testament saints were wise only because the Spirit of the Lord Jesus dwelt in them. Jesus pointed out, "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day: and he saw it, and was glad" (John 8:56).
Apart from Christ there is no wisdom. He is made unto us wisdom and righteousness and sanctification and redemption. Wisdom commences at conversion, but deepens by discipleship. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom" (Psalm 111:10a). The moment a person is converted to Christ, the wisdom of God comes into him, and the indwelling Spirit of God begins to teach him the truths of the Lord.
No wonder wisdom is of such infinite worth!
In this message, Adrian Rogers shares how to discover and develop our spiritual gifts.