Monday, August 15, 2016

Knowledge versus Wisdom

Chuckle: Holding a hammer behind her back, a woman spoke to a mirror: "Mirror, mirror on the wall, take all the time you need to phrase your response!"
Quote: "Accumulated knowledge does not make a wise man. Knowledgeable people are found everywhere, but we are cruelly short of wise people." --Michel Quoist
"While knowledge may make us feel important, it is love that really builds up the church. Anyone who claims to know all the answers doesn't really know very much. But the person who loves God is the one God knows and cares for" (1 Corinthians 8:1b-3 NLT).
It's easy to take pride in how much we know and develop the attitude that we are somehow superior to others not as knowledgeable. Knowledge can make us look good and feel important, but it can also lead us down a slippery slope toward an arrogant, know-it-all attitude.
Seeing ourselves as knowledgeable can prevent us from seeking true wisdom from God. When we come to recognize that the only wisdom with eternal implications is from God, we have taken the first step toward spiritual discernment and godly wisdom. Knowledge from God leads to understanding and understanding leads to spiritual discernment, and spiritual discernment leads to godly wisdom.
One can be the most knowledgeable person in the world and still lack that illusive quality of spiritual discernment. ". . . no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have received the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. . . The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Corinthians 2:2b-12, 14 NIV). Notice that the person who does not have the Holy Spirit can never understand God's spiritual truths. "And if anyone does not have the Spirit of God, he does not belong to Christ" (Romans 8:9 NIV).
As a child, I remember a saying that goes something like this: "That fellow has a lot of book-learning, but no common sense." Observations like this decry knowledge alone and exalt wisdom, understanding, and common sense. The same can be said about the things of God. We can know everything written in the Bible about God, quote Scripture like no other, even believe that God exists, and still lack the essential ingredient for spiritual wisdom and discernment -- the indwelling Holy Spirit of the living God. "You may believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that -- and shudder" (James 2:19 NIV).
Sadly, many depend upon their superior knowledge and living a good moral life to seal their relationship to God. They fail to realize that a spiritual soul-saving relationship with God only comes through faith the Jesus Christ. The Bible says our salvation is sealed by the Spirit. Once we know Christ as Savior and Lord, we will know His Spirit who Jesus said "lives with you and will be in you" (John 14:17b NIV).
Love, Jerry & Dotse


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