Living God’s Word – Pt. 2 Wisdom

The Scripture Verse we are looking at in these next three posts is:

Proverbs 23:23 NLT

Get the truth and never sell it; also get wisdom, discipline, and good judgment.

Living God’s Word – Wisdom

First off! The questions that begs to be answered is …

What is Wisdom?

According to the New Bible Dictionary (Hubbard, 1993), the concept of wisdom found most commonly in the Bible is:

. . . the art of being successful, of forming the correct plan to gain the desired results. Its seat is the heart, the centre of moral and intellectual decision.

The Bible has a lot to say about wisdom. Let’s look at a few prominent verses:

  • Biblical Wisdom stems from the Fear of the Lord

And this is what he says to all humanity:  ‘The fear of the Lord is true wisdom; to forsake evil is real understanding.  – Job 28:28 NLT

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding.  His praise endures forever!  – Psalm 111:10 ESV

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.  – Proverbs 9:10 ESV

So, the Fear of the Lord (reverence, respect, honour, and obedience to the Lord) brings a forsaking of evil, understanding, knowledge, and insight.  Sounds so practical, doesn’t it!?

For the purpose of this post, let’s make some conclusions from what we have looked at.  It is apparent that given what John’s gospel says,

But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.      – John 20:31 NLT

we need to believe and have a relationship with Jesus to be connected to the Divine Wisdom of God.  As we place our faith in Him, His wisdom is expressed and revealed in and through us.  God’s wisdom in Christ Jesus gives us guidance for life, practical ability, and an awareness of God’s Divine Wisdom in all of Creation.

Wisdom starts with the Fear of the Lord which is a highly practical response of giving reverence, honour and obedience to who God is and what He has done for us, and we participate in the Wisdom of God through faith in Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 2:1-10 NLT gives us …

The Benefits of Wisdom

My child, listen to what I say, and treasure my commands.

Tune your ears to wisdom, and concentrate on understanding.

Cry out for insight, and ask for understanding.

Search for them as you would for silver; seek them like hidden treasures.

Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and you will gain knowledge of God.

For the Lord grants wisdom!  From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.

He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest.  He is a shield to those who walk with integrity.

He guards the paths of the just and protects those who are faithful to him.

Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will find the right way to go.

10 For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy.

11 Wise choices will watch over you.  Understanding will keep you safe.

Action Questions:

  1. Have you asked God for wisdom in your life?
    • Be honest about the things that seem to be going wrong in your life and ask the Lord to give you His wisdom.
    • His wisdom is not always “logical”, he may want you to do something that doesn’t make much sense to show you that His wisdom is far better.
  2. Where do you lack faith?
    • Make a list of areas in your life or thoughts that you know you could use more faith in God’s plan and purpose for you.
  3. What has God gifted you with?
    • Spend some time being thankful for the things God has given you – ability, special skills, etc.
    • Ask the Lord Jesus to give you wisdom in using those abilities.
    • Ask the Lord Jesus to give you wisdom in all your relationships.

Living God’s Word – Pt. 1 Truth

The Scripture Verse we are looking at in these next four posts is:

Proverbs 23:23 NLT

Get the truth and never sell it; also get wisdom, discipline, and good judgment.

Living God’s Word – Truth

The focus for this post is “Get the truth and never sell it.”

So, let’s ask ourselves some Questions:

  1. How do we get the Truth?
  2. How do hang on to it?
  3. How is it possible to sell it?

The search for the Truth has taken up countless pages of philosophical and religious books, it has created much controversy throughout the centuries, wars and much fatality. Some of the critical questions we face are,

    • “Can we even know truth?”
    • “Is there such a thing as ultimate truth?”
    • “What if truth is not a thing but a someone?”

And that last question is exactly where we need to start and continue our pursuit.

Truth starts, exists, and ends with God!

  •  How do we get truth?
    • In order to possess truth, we need to be in relationship with God.

There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus. – 1 Timothy 2:5 NLT

This is not a post of philosophical nature to consider the various propositions of what truth is, rather to consider what the Bible has to say about truth. In one of the most obvious verses …

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.  – John 14:6 NLT

Clearly, to be in relationship with God, we are to go through the man Jesus Christ, who is:

. . . the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation, for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. . . . Everything was created through him and for him.                        – Colossians 1:15-16 NLT

We get Truth by way of a relationship with Jesus Christ – Believing in Him, Following Him, Trusting Him, Honouring Him, and Obeying Him.

  • How do we hang on to truth?
    • In order to hang on to truth, we need to develop our relationship with Jesus, we call this discipleship

Just like fostering any relationship, it involves communication and commitment. Communication with God through Jesus Christ is about reading, studying, and thinking on God’s Word and prayer. As we listen intently to what we read in the Bible, pray about what we learn and do our best to put it into practice (commitment), we foster our relationship with Jesus Christ. This is exactly what Jesus was getting at when he said these words:

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.  I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.  – John 15:4-5 ESV

  • How is it possible to sell truth? 
    • In order hang on to truth and not sell-out, we need to be careful not to allow popular, celebrity or false teachings influence us.

That is why it is important to be reading, studying, memorizing, and meditating on God’s Word.

How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word.  I will study your commandments and reflect on your ways.  I will delight in your decrees and not forget your word.  – Psalm 119:9,15-16 NLT

If we only read it every once in a while, barely think about its significance and the only in-depth consideration we give it is from a brief sermon at church or recording, then we have sold the truth for an easy way out – the magic pill or silver bullet.  The same is true with popular TV preachers and spiritual gurus. If we allow them to lead us, following blindly in their teachings, without looking to the Bible for ourselves and discovering what it has to say, then we have sold out and bought into whatever they are selling – and many are selling something other than what the Bible teaches.

If the Bible is not instructing us, correcting us or challenging our minds in profound ways, then we have become lazy in our pursuit of the Truth, in fostering our relationship with Him.

All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.       – 2 Timothy 3:16-17 NLT

Let’s take a few moments, ponder and pray the words of this old hymn:

I need Thy presence every passing hour.
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s power?
Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.

I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.

Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.

Abide with me – by Henry Francis Lyte

Action Questions:

  • Are you getting to know the Truth (Jesus Christ) better each day?
    • List some specific things you are learning
  • Are you spending time in God’s Word for yourself?
    • What passages or verses from the Bible are meaningful for you today?
  • Are you praying about the things that matter most to you?
    • Honestly and boldly speak those things aloud in prayer.
    • Ask the Lord God to show you ways to practice the truths you are learning and abide in (rest, take delight, enjoy, honour) Him.

Living God’s Word – Introduction

Proverbs 23:23 NLT

Get the truth and never sell it; also get wisdom, discipline, and good judgment.

This post will be in four parts after this first post which will be a brief reflection on

Living God’s Word – Introduction. 

Part One – Truth, Part Two – Wisdom, Part Three – Discipline, Part Four – Good Judgment.

I’ve chosen this verse from Proverbs because it speaks of what we need to get in order to live in the fullness of what God desires for us. It starts with God’s Word, the Bible.  If we are going to attempt to live a life pleasing to God, then we need to be looking to the Bible daily, not only reading it casually, but meditating on it, studying it and finding ways to put it Into Practice (thus the name of this blog).

Here in these posts, we will discuss truths from God’s Word and possible ways we can put those truths into practice. I will invite others to participate in regular posts as well to gain insights from others who share the same desire for believers to walk faithfully according to God’s Word.

So, first off! 

Living God’s Word. 

I like what the Apostle Paul writes in Phil 3:14 NLT

I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.

What is the goal here in this verse that Paul is talking about?  Christ is the goal. Knowing Christ and the power of his resurrection, which is at work in us through the Holy Spirit.

In the previous verses (7-11) Paul gives evidence of two things at work in him,

1) being made righteous through faith in Christ,

For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith. 3:9 NLT

2) experiencing/knowing the power of Christ by walking/identifying with him in our actions – dying to sin, being raised to the life He desires.

to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. 3:10 NLT

To take these thoughts further, we need to realize that holding onto a righteousness through faith in Christ requires a change in mindset, transformation of the mind (see Romans 12:2). It’s a process of learning what God desires through His Word and through prayer. He will reveal truths to us and guide us as we submit our way to Him (Proverbs 3:5-6).

Then, as we are being transformed by the renewing of our minds, we need to put Into Practice those truths Christ desires for us to obey, otherwise the process stops there and we do not mature in our faith. Transformation requires Conformity to the will of Christ Jesus in everything.

These two things, Transformation of the mind (Time in God’s Word) and Conformity of our wills in obedience to Christ (Putting God’s Truth into Practice) are paramount for the Christian life.  Let’s press on to reach the prize of knowing Jesus Christ more through a radical change of mind and submission of our wills to His.

Get-Into-PracticeLiving Gods Word

Action Questions:

  1. Are you spending time in God’s Word, reading, meditating and studying it?
    • If not, find a way to make more time for the Bible.
    • There are many Bible reading plans and options available (see side panel).
  2. What truths come to your attention from the verses you are reading?
    • Write down notes and highlight words that stand out in the passage.
    • Spend time thinking and praying about those truths.
  3. What actions can you take in response to what God is revealing to you?
    • Is there some behaviour that needs to change?
    • What can you do to bless someone else in response to this truth?