A Prayer & Praise for Wisdom

“I don’t want wisdom.” The same defiant teen who asked in my last post whether I was wise or not, declared her position without apology.

“Why?” I asked. Her answer revealed her heart.

“If I have wisdom I am responsible to use it.”

Her first mistake came in not heeding Solomon’s counsel in Proverbs to seek wisdom, nor James’s to ask it of God.

“If any of you lack wisdom,

let him ask of God,

that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not;

and it shall be given him.”

James 1:5

THE PRAYER: (from Ephesians 1:17-18a)

“That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you

the spirit of wisdom

“For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist … Then there arose certain of the synagogue… disputing with Stephen. And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake.”

“Even the Spirit of truth;

whom the world cannot receive,

because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him:

but ye know him:

for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” 

Luke 21:15; Acts 6:9,10; John 14:17

And revelation in the knowledge of him …

“To comprehend with all saints

what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height:

and to know the love of Christ,

which passeth knowledge,

that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.”

Ephesians 3:18-19

The eyes of your understanding being enlightened…

“that ye may know what is the hope of his calling

, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe…” Ephesians 1:18,19

What would the teen miss by not asking for wisdom from God? The same things we would miss.

How to –

  • answer adversaries of the faith;
  • know and live out God’s will in life;
  • live a productive life with eternal rewards;
  • find hope when life gets hard;
  • be filled with the power, love, and truth of God.

And finally, she would miss the pleasure of God’s smile, his glory in her life. For her reasoning showed she had not asked for wisdom nor knowledge. Otherwise she would have known not asking multiplied her responsibility instead of diminishing it. For she knew to ask and did not.

THE PRAISE:

In response to Daniel’s prayer for wisdom, he offered up this praise to God.

“Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever:

  • for wisdom and might are his:
  • And he changeth the times and the seasons:
  • he removeth kings, and setteth up kings;
  • he giveth wisdom unto the wise,
  • and knowledge to them that know understanding;
  • He revealeth the deep and secret things;
  • he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.
  • I thank thee and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers,
  • who hast given me wisdom and might,
  • and hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee;
  • for thou hast now made known unto us the king’s matter.” Daniel 2:20-23

And the Lord leaves us with this word from his prophet Jeremiah.

“Thus saith the LORD,

let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,

neither let the mighty man glory in his might,

let not the rich man glory in his riches:

But let him that glorieth glory in this,

that he understandeth and knoweth me,

that I am the LORD

which exercise lovingkindness, judgement, and righteousness, in the earth:

for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.”

(9:23,24)

Thank you, heavenly Father for giving us the Spirit of Christ to dwell in us, filling us with your wisdom. May we use it with knowledge and spiritual understanding to bring glory to your name. Amen.


Next week I hope to finish looking into the rest of the seven Spirits before the throne of God. (Revelation 1:4). Until then may we walk together in the wisdom of the Spirit that dwells within.

Wisdom – Do You Have It?

DSCF0310“For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him?

But we have the mind of Christ.”

1 Corinthians 2:16

The smile on the teen’s face revealed the intent behind the question. “ Are you wise?”

All in the class waited for my answer. If I said, “ Yes,” I could look prideful to them. If I answered, “No,” then what was the point of believing what’s recorded in James 1:5 where we’re told to ask for wisdom, and God would give it to us liberally.

Isaiah 11:2 reveals the seven Spirits of God – the fulness of God in the Holy Spirit. My last post introduced us to who he is – the Spirit of the Lord. He is God the Holy Spirit who indwelt Jesus Christ and who dwells in every follower of the Lord. He is described as –

“The spirit of wisdom and understanding.”

This spirit of wisdom and understanding is ours vicariously when we are born into God’s family through the work of the Spirit of Christ in us. We have his wisdom at our disposal. We need only ask.

Paul prayed for the Christians of Colosse –

“that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.” Colossians 1:9

The wisdom of the Lord grows in us as we grow in the knowledge of his will. Understanding happens as we learn to walk in the knowledge. Wisdom knows what. Understanding knows how to apply the what. It is not given to us to puff us up with pride. It is a gift of God –

“For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.” Proverbs 2:6

With the Holy Spirit in us we have the mind of Christ, his wisdom and understanding is there for the having.

Ask as James instructs, so we might understand how to –

  • “walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing,
  • being fruitful in every good work,
  • and increasing in the knowledge of God.” Colossians 1:10
  • “And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery,
  • which  from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God who created all things by Jesus Christ:

To the intent that now

unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places

might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God,

according to the eternal purpose which he purposed

in Christ Jesus our Lord:”

Ephesians 3:9-11

In answer to the teen’s question, “ Am I wise?”  I have the wisdom of Christ in me, as does every follower of Christ. But I am wise only to the extent I have and use the understanding he gives me to correctly apply the wisdom he gives. Sometimes I am. Sometimes I’m not. But like Paul, I keep striving, remembering it is a gift to us who are –

“in Christ Jesus,

who of God is made unto us wisdom,

and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:

That, according as it is written,

He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.”

1 Corinthians 1:30,31

What about you? Are you wise? It is a different question than the one which asks, “Do you have wisdom?”

A Heart Moved by Wisdom

DSCF4224The heart of God contains a never ending flow of love. No matter how much he pours out, the stream continues forever  for –

“…God is love.”

In this week’s posts we have seen through scripture the love of God poured out for all. Those who receive it know his inexhaustible love in abundance. Those who do not have yet to experience the fullness of love. The apostle Paul tells us apart from the love of God our works satisfy our  longing to know love for a moment in time, then fade away into nothing. He describes God’s love we need in order to know and give true love.

God’s love is –

  • *Longsuffering, covering our sins with the blood of Christ;
  • Kind, forgiving our sins for Christ’s sake;
  • Not Envious, but showers his blessings upon us;
  • Not pushing itself forward but does lift us up to heavenly places;
  • Not Proud, but humbled to the point of death on the cross;
  • Courteous, thinking of our need above his own life;
  • Self-controlled, extending mercy and grace through the years instead of wrath;
  • Thinks good toward us;
  • Saddened by our sin;
  • Rejoices when we walk in truth;
  • Bears all things by not withdrawing his love;
  • Gives us faith to believe, hope for strength, and patience to persist.
  • Never failing- it is eternal for God is love and he is eternal. 
  • *God’s love is perfect for he is perfect.

Unlike God, our love falls short being guided by emotions and limited knowledge. God’s heart of love is guided by his wisdom.

“He is wise in heart,

and mighty in strength:

who hath hardened himself against him,

and hath prospered?”

Job 9:4

And God’s wisdom comes from above. It is –

“… first pure,

then peaceable,

gentle and easy to be intreated,

full of mercy and good fruits,

without partiality,

and without hypocrisy.”

James 3:17

  •  Pure-holy not contaminated by any ulterior motive but expressed in his perfect love.

“…Be ye holy: for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:16

  •  Peaceable- removes the division between him and people; 

“But now in Christ Jesus

ye who sometimes were far off

are made nigh by the blood of Christ…

And came and preached peace to you

which were afar off,

and to them that were nigh.

For through him

we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.”

Ephesians 2:13,17,18

  • Gentle – fully aware of our need and carries us as the Good Shepherd;

“He shall feed his flock like a shepherd:

he shall gather the lambs with his arm,

and carry them in his bosom,

and shall gently lead those that are with young.”

Isaiah 40:11

  • Easy to be intreated- Jesus has made the way for us to come to the Father;

“Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace,

that we may obtain mercy,

and find grace to help in time of need.”

Hebrews 4:16

  • Full of mercy- his mercy towards us is from everlasting to everlasting extending to us his favor instead of judgment;

 “O give thanks unto the LORD;

for he is good;

for his mercy endureth for ever…

And of his fulness have all we received,

and grace for grace.

For the law was given by Moses,

but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.”

(Psalm 136:1; John 1:16,17)

  • Filled with good fruits- these express who God is and are given to every believer by the indwelling Holy Spirit;

“But the fruit of the Spirit is

love, joy, peace, longsuffering,

gentleness, goodness, faith,

Meekness, temperance…”

Galatians 5:22,23

  • Without partiality – for it is available to all who come to him, no matter color or status;

“There is neither Jew nor Greek,

there is neither bond nor free,

there is neither male nor female:

for ye are all one in Christ Jesus…

For God so loved the world…”

Galatians 3:28; John 3:16a

  • Without hypocrisy – There is no deceit in him.

“And ye shall know the truth,

and the truth shall make you free…

Jesus saith unto him,

I am the way,

the truth,

and the life;

no man cometh unto the Father,

but by me.”

John 8:32; 14:6

The Lord’s wisdom knows the end from the beginning. His heart of love carries his own into eternity with him.

“How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God!

Therefore the children of men put their trust

under the shadow of thy wings.

They shall be abundantly satisfied

with the fatness of thy house;

and thou shalt make them drink

of the river of thy pleasures.

For with thee is the fountain of life:

in thy light shall we see light.”

Psalm 36: 7-9.

He holds us under the shadow of his wings – next to his heart.


*Author’s interpretation of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 and 1 John 4:18

Here Come the Judges Part 1

 “And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and served Baalim: And they forsook the LORD God of their fathers…And they forsook the LORD, and served Baal and Ashtaroth. And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel…so that they could not any longer stand before their enemies…Nevertheless the LORD raised up judges, which delivered them out of the hand of those that spoiled them.”  (portions of Judges 2:11-16).

Who were these judges, what kind of men and women were they, what lessons can we learn from them? These are questions we hope to probe through the four parts of “Here Come the Judges.”

Othniel: Power in the Spirit of the Lord

 blog shieldHis name means powerful one. Being Caleb’s nephew, I wonder how many retellings of the miracles of the Lord as He delivered the fledgling nation from Egypt he heard; of the wanderings, and the conquests of mightier nations?  He had proven himself courageous in the taking of Debir. Then we meet him as one of four judges identified  with the phrase, “And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he judged Israel.” Judges 3:10.

Believers:

“And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them…Ezek. 36:27; Even the Spirit of truth: whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him; but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you…John 14:17; But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

As God empowered Othniel for the work of the Lord, so has He empowered us.

Ehud: Walking in Wisdom

His name means strong. Raised up by the Lord to deliver Israel from Eglon the king of Moab, this left-handed man showed strength and cunning in dealing with his enemy. After killing the king through a subversive plan (read the account in Judges 3:12-30), he mustered Israel and lead them to victory.

“And he said unto them, Follow after me: for the Lord hath delivered your enemies the Moabites into your hand…And they slew of Moab at that time about ten thousand men, all lusty, and all men of valour; and there escaped not a man. So Moab was subdued that day under the hand of Israel. And the land had rest fourscore years.”

Believers:

pexels-photo-891607.jpeg

“Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves…Matt. 10:16; And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice…John 10:4; Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom…But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.” James 3:13,17.

Walk in wisdom, redeeming the time. Follow the One who gives you wisdom liberally to face the enemies of your soul, the enemies of His kingdom.

Shamgar: Known By God

Little is known of this judge, not even the meaning of his name. He must have been a man of courage to kill six hundred Philistines with an ox goad… “and he also delivered Israel.” Judges 3:31. Not a lot said, but his work does not go unnoticed.

Believers:

You may feel insignificant in the kingdom of God but remember this; God the Son knows you and has a record of your name.

“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me…John 10:27; …rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven…Luke 10;20b; How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.” Psalm 139:17,18.

Believer, you are known of God and can walk in wisdom for the Holy Spirit dwells within you. You don’t have to be caught in the cycle of sin found throughout Judges.

Which of these judges do you identify with? Which judge are you wanting to hear about?

Who Are They?

“Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding…She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.” Prov. 3:13,18.

christmas-934181__340“Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.” Matt. 2:1,2.

These men saw a star and understood it had special meaning. They identified it as a sign of the birth of the King of the Jews. Where did they get this knowledge?

Had the writings of Moses concerning Balaam’s oracle reached their ears?  “I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel…” Numbers 24:17.

Or were they Babylonians or Medes that had heard of Daniel’s wisdom and prophetic dreams and visions? “I saw…one like the Son of man…And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an ever lasting dominion…”Dan. 7:13,14.

We don’t have certain answers to those questions but we do know they showed wisdom in choosing to worship and fear God. “ When they were come into the house, they saw the young child…and fell down, and worshipped him…And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.”(Matt. 2:11,12.)

The lack of the fear of God is evident today in the choices of mankind and I wonder where are the wise men? Joshua in the Old Testament gave the people a choice.

“Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served…and serve ye the LORD…choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served…but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”Josh. 24:14,15.

Elijah gave the people a choice. “…How long halt ye between two opinions: if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.”1Kings 18:21.

The Lord gives you a choice. “…Behold, the fear of the LORD, that is wisdom… the beginning of knowledge…Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes; Fear the LORD, and depart from evil.”(Job 28:28; Prov. 1:7; 3:5-7).

Choose wisely while there is still time to choose. For the day fast approaches where, “He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still…behold I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.” Rev. 22:11,12.

Be counted among the wise, seeking and following the wisdom of God for in it you will find happiness and the tree of life. God does not wish for any to “…perish, but that all should come to repentance.” 2Pet. 3:9. Make you choice count for eternity.

Praying we each choose to walk and grow in the knowledge, wisdom, and spiritual understanding of the Lord.