The Bibles instructs us, “…incline your ear to wisdom…” (Proverbs 2:2). But how does one define wisdom? What is the source of true wisdom? Commonly, wisdom is sought in human philosophy, in sources like ancient philosophers such as Plato, and others, along with more recent philosophers. Or it may be sought in the opinions of scholars, religious leaders, historians, scientists, educators, or even politicians. Or maybe whatever ideas happen to be popular at any given moment. The world has its wisdom.
We’re told that God “stores up sound wisdom for the upright” (Proverbs 2:7). But the world’s wisdom is often at odds with the wisdom of God as recorded in Scripture. Often the scholars and “wise” of the world ridicule the Scriptures, and assign them to realm of myth and fable. In many ways the wisdom of the world and God’s wisdom cannot be reconciled. “For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God” (I Corinthians 3:19).
As Christians, how then should we approach learning and knowledge, making judgments and decisions about life? In this message Rod Reynolds discusses some key principles to guide us in evaluating what may be called “wisdom,” or learning or knowledge.
Jesus in Luke 4:4 said that man is to live “by every word of God.” He taught that the wise will build his life on the foundation of obedience to the word of God (Matthew 7:24-25).
God’s word judges us. “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12). “Discerner” is from the Greek κριτικός, an adjective that means able to judge or discern (Greek-English Lexicon, Bauer, Arndt and Gringrich). The English word “critic” is derived from the Greek word used here. Kριτικός is a cognate of κριτής (kritēs), a judge, and κρίνω (krinō), a verb meaning to judge or distinguish or decide. God’s word judges us, and in a sense is our critic. It penetrates beyond the surface to our innermost being. In the final analysis, everyone will be judged by God’s word (John 12:48).
Is God looking for an excuse to exclude you from his kingdom? Or does he want to grant salvation to you as an heir in his kingdom? And what must you do as you live your life as a Christian, to do your part to assure your place in God’s kingdom when the time of the first resurrection occurs?
During his earthly ministry, Jesus often used parables when addressing his audiences. He used parables to illustrate important spiritual principles having to do with the kingdom of God and our relationships with God and with one another. He did not often explain the full meaning of the parables to his audiences, but it wasn’t because he wanted to “hide the meaning,” nor because he was “lying,” as some have imagined. It was because of their hardness of heart. But he did explain the meanings to his closest disciples, whom he told to explain it to others (Matthew 10:27). This is explained in more detail in our article “Does God Lie?“
One of the parables of Jesus is the one featuring seeds sown of wheat and tares, lessons from which are explored in this message.
Israel failed as a nation to fulfill their calling because they refused to hear and obey God’s word, and their hearts were hardened. Mankind as a whole has followed the same course. We are warned not to follow that example. Learn more as you listen to this important message.