What is wisdom? As you begin reading through Proverbs today this is a question that should be on your mind because Proverbs is all about defining what is wise.
Let me help you start your definition by clarifying something for you. Wisdom is not cerebral. What I mean is that wisdom is not about knowing stuff. That is knowledge. In fact, as you read through Proverbs you will see a distinction made between knowledge and wisdom. They are related, and one plays into the other, but they are not the same thing. Knowledge is what you know, wisdom is what you do with what you know. Wisdom welcomes more knowledge, and knowledge is only useful with wisdom. It is one thing to know that it is wrong to steal, it is another thing to structure your life according to that knowledge. That is wisdom.
You will notice as we get into Proverbs that wisdom is exceedingly practical. Again, Proverbs does not paint a picture of intellectual pursuit for us. It paints a picture of a godly life that is governed by right decisions, decisions that are governed by the right knowledge. Repeatedly you will read that a wise person welcome reproach but a fool rejects correction (Proverbs 15 especially talks about this). Openness to knowledge, correction and instruction are characteristics of the wise. Wisdom works itself out in how you live, in how you conduct business, build relationships and react to life.
In fact, there are lots of characteristics of the wise that Proverbs talks about. We could spend a whole year talking about what a wise person looks like from Proverbs!
As you read, ask the Holy Spirit where you are like the wise and ask where you are more like the fool. Notice the comparisons between the two.
- What was familiar from this passage of scripture? What was something I already knew?
- What was new from this piece of scripture? What was something that really stood out for me that I have never paid attention to before?
- Does Jesus appear in this passage of scripture?
- How does this passage apply to my life, here and now? Do I need to do anything about it?
- What prayer would I offer up to God after reading this piece of scripture?
Tomorrow’s Reading: Proverbs 4-6