The Elements of Success - A Study of the Book of Proverbs (Chapter 8)
Wisdom is Calling Out!
Wisdom is everywhere; it’s free to anyone who will listen, anyone who will take the time to hear its voice. Wisdom isn’t hiding in some out of the way place, it’s found right out in the open for all to see, all to hear, and all to receive; if they will.
Do you hear lady wisdom calling? Can you hear Madame Insight raising her voice? She’s taken her stand at First and Main, at the busiest intersection. Right in the city square where the traffic is the thickest, she shouts, “You – I’m talking to all of you, everyone out here on the streets! Listen you idiots – learn good sense! You blockheads – shape up! Don’t miss a word of this – I’m telling you how to live well, I’m telling you how to live at your best.” (Proverbs 8:1 – 6 TMB)
From the time we are born, the voice of wisdom is calling to us. Our parents, grandparents and other family members are imparting life’s wisdom to us each day as we grow and learn.
We start school and the lessons of wisdom continue. Our teachers not only instruct us in the basics of language and arithmetic, but acceptable social skills, and wisdom we will need to succeed in life. Each year is a process, learning more and more.
For some the lessons are easily learned, and for others, it is a constant struggle; but the lessons are learned. There are some, however, who fight against the voice of wisdom, who are determined not to proceed on the path of wisdom. These are the people whose lives are in constant turmoil. They seem to struggle with everything from money to relationships.
Listen and I will speak of excellent things, and from the opening of my lips will come right things; for my mouth will speak truth; Wickedness is an abomination to my lips. All the words of my mouth are with righteousness; nothing crooked or perverse is in them. They are all plain to him who understands, and right to those who find knowledge. Receive my instruction, and not silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold. For wisdom is better than rubies and all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her. (Proverbs 8: 6-11 NKJV)
True wisdom is not a lie, it is not wicked, nor will it lead those who follow it, down a wrong path. Just the opposite, wisdom will bring those who follow its course peace, security, and a life filled with blessings. Blessings worth far more that anything the world has to offer. True wisdom is more valuable than gold, silver, and rare gems.
Wisdom and good sense go hand in hand, as do stubbornness and rebellion. Those who are rebellious and stubborn experience a hard life; those with wisdom and good sense will be truly blessed.
I, wisdom, dwell with prudence and find out knowledge and discretion. The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; pride and arrogance and the evil way and the perverse mouth I hate. (Proverbs 8: 12-13 NKJV)
Remember that we discovered The Fear-of-the-Lord is a deep reverence or respect for God. If we have that kind of godly fear, we hate the sin of pride, arrogance, and a mouth filled with lies and hatred. Not only in others, but starting with ourselves. It is crucial that we recognize when pride and arrogance is trying to sneak into our thoughts and lives and take action against it right away. Always keeping watch over what thoughts and attitudes settle into our hearts and minds, and what comes out of our mouth.
Insight and Virtue
Good counsel and common sense are my characteristics; I am both Insight and the Virtue to live it out. With my help, leaders rule, and lawmakers legislate fairly; With my help, governors govern, along with all in legitimate authority. I love those who love me; those who look for me find me. (Proverbs 8: 14 – 17 TMB)
People who seek after knowledge, understanding, and wisdom have a good sense. They are the people others seek out for guidance and counsel for their own lives. Good leaders possess the wisdom and knowledge to rule over others fairly. It is wisdom that gives lawmakers, judges, and the leaders of our cities, and countries the ability to govern well.
Anyone who desires knowledge and understanding, and seeks wisdom will find it. God will bestow His wisdom on anyone who diligently and earnestly seeks after this gift.
Riches and honor are with me, Enduring riches and righteousness. My fruit is better than gold, yes, than find gold, and my revenue than choice silver.I traverse the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of justice, that I may cause those who love me to inherit wealth, that I may fill their treasuries. (Proverbs 8: 18 – 21 NKJV)
Wealth and Glory accompany me—also substantial Honor and a Good Name. My benefits are worth more than a big salary, even a very big salary; the returns on me exceed any imaginable bonus. You can find me on Righteous Road – that’s where I walk – at the intersection of Justice Avenue, Handing out life to those who love me, filling their arms with life – armloads of life! (Proverbs 8: 18 – 21 TMB)
Those who gain knowledge, understanding, and wisdom, also gain the ability to have substantial wealth. Have you ever known a lawyer, judge, doctor, or good businessman who was poor? They also have a pretty decent reputation and are in excellent standing, in the community, as a whole. Those who live a godly life and seek after godly wisdom are not only blessed with a comfortable life, but are willing to support and encourage others to find the way to wisdom, knowledge and understanding. They contribute to organizations and individuals in helping further education and the search for wisdom.
Some people get caught up in the thought that if Christians are truly seeking after wisdom, knowledge, and understanding then they should be rich. But obtaining wisdom does not promise wealth; it only gives us the ability to acquire considerable wealth. Obtaining knowledge, understanding and wisdom, is only the first step; there are many other steps to take to obtain wealth, and some of those steps may include personal sacrifice and hard work. There are those who consider the cost too high. That doesn't mean they are not wise, they have just arrived at a different stage in their journey. Not everyone is called to be a doctor or lawyer, some are called to other vocations, and if they walk in godly wisdom, they will experience a blessed and fulfilled life.
The First Element of Creation
God sovereignly made me – the first, the basic – before he did anything else. (Proverbs 8: 22 TMB)
The Lord possessed me at the beginning of His way, before His works of old.(Proverbs 8: 22 NKJV)
If wisdom were listed on the periodic tables, it would be the very first element created, and all other elements listed, created from it. It is with the element of wisdom that God created everything. From the first glimmer of light to the very breath of man, the foundation, the essential element, was wisdom.
I was brought into being a long time ago, well before Earth got its start. I arrived on the scene before Ocean, yes, even before Springs and Rivers and Lakes. Before Mountains were sculpted and Hills took shape, I was already there, newborn; long before God stretched out Earth’s Horizons, and tended to the minute details of Soil and Weather, and set Sky firmly in place, I was there.When He mapped and gave borders to Wild Ocean, built the vast vault of Heaven, and installed the foundations that fed Ocean, When He drew a boundary for sea, posted a sign that said, “no trespassing”, and then staked out Earth’s foundations, I was right there with Him, making sure everything fit. Day after day I was there, with my joyful applause, always enjoying His Company, delighted with the world of things, and creatures, happily celebrating the human family. (Proverbs 8: 23-31 TMB)
This is a pretty clear indication that the solar system, the earth, and everything in it was not an accident, but a well planned and thought out set of events that fit together perfectly.
Finding Real Life
Now therefore, listen to me, my children, for blessed are those who keep my ways. Hear instruction and be wise, and do not disdain it. Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. For whoever finds me finds life, and obtains favor from the Lord.
But he who sins against me wrongs his own soul; All those who hate me love death. (Proverbs8: 32 – 36 NKJV)
So, my dear friends listen carefully; those who embrace these my ways are most blessed. Mark a life of discipline and live wisely; don’t squander your precious life. Blessed the man, blessed the woman, who listens to me, awake and ready for me each morning, alert and responsive as I start my day’s work. When you find me, you find life, real life, to say nothing of God’s good pleasure.
But if you wrong me, you damage your very soul; when you reject me, you’re flirting with death.” (Proverbs 8: 32-36 TMB)
A life that is disciplined and always seeking godly wisdom, direction, and understanding is blessed beyond measure. There are certainly the blessings of wealth and honor, but even more satisfying, are the blessings of contentment, happiness, and peace. Knowing that life within this structure of godliness will keep us near to God, and keep our souls protected from harm. This is finding Real Life.
© 2012 miss_jkim