Wisdom; October 6, 2019

Proverbs 1:29-31 Since they hated knowledge
and did not choose to fear the Lord,
since they would not accept my advice
and spurned my rebuke,
they will eat the fruit of their ways
and be filled with the fruit of their schemes.

Proverbs is rightly classified as Wisdom Literature, because starting with this first chapter it records a lot of wise sayings and, as here, uses Wisdom itself as a metaphorical speaker. The reason it qualifies as Scripture is that wisdom is couched in terms of faith, with “the fear of the Lord” as the most basic element and evidence of wisdom. Right now the events in government circles in the US seem like a morality play, even one taken directly from the pages of Proverbs. We see people lying when their lies bring them no advantage whatsoever, and we see people making pious pronouncements when their actions betray no fear of God at all. At times I find myself torn between laughter at the ridiculousness of it all and sorrow that anyone, and particularly leaders, could be so committed to falsehoods. One strongly Christian news commentator recently left his position, but not without making a final statement on the godlessness of what he was seeing. It is clear that wisdom, as Proverbs says, starts with recognizing that we are fallible created beings who are accountable to our Creator, who is both omniscient and omnipotent. That recognition will certainly generate a healthy respect, and yes, fear, that is all too lacking in much of society today.

The risk for me is that in seeing the foolishness of others, I may forget my own susceptibility to the same deceptions. Just last night I had the privilege of hearing an anointed speaker, and one of the many things he said from the Lord was that we are all fundamentally hypocrites, but the way out of that is to recognize and confess your hypocrisy. At the moment you confess, “I am a hypocrite,” you stop being hypocritical! As I look at all the mess that is going on, not just in government but in every area of society, I am not to despise anyone or hate them as individuals, even when I hate what they are doing and see that they are being directly obedient to the devil. I am to speak the truth in love, even when it comes out like what Jesus said to the religious professionals in Matthew 23. Like God told Ezekiel, if I fail to warn people, their destruction is my responsibility, but if I do warn them, it is their own. (Ezekiel 33:1-6) I am to seek the wisdom that comes from a right relationship with God, and I am to recommend that wisdom to all who will receive it.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You also for the refreshing I received in last night’s meeting, and for the marvelous example set by Pastor Minami. He is a true disciple of Jesus Christ, and as such, expresses Your truth in the power of Your Spirit. I ask Your blessings on him and his ministry, and pray that I too would be a faithful son and servant to You, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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