Knowledge versus Wisdom

When we first looked at the sayings of Solomon and the wise men of Israel, we began with Proverbs 1. It occurs to me that it would be worthwhile to return to it as we consider for the final time our tendency to substitute knowledge for wisdom. This is not only a daily grind; it is a lifetime challenge!

How easy it is to acquire knowledge, yet how difficult and painstaking is the process of gaining wisdom. Man shares knowledge; God gives wisdom. Knowledge comes as we get an education, either by absorbing what the highly educated have to say or by simply gathering information here and there along life’s road. But what about the wisdom that is from above? As you already know, there is no course, no school, no earthly data bank where divine wisdom can be accessed. And unlike knowledge, which can be measured in objective analyses, quantified by exams, and certified by diplomas and degrees, wisdom defies measurement; it is much more subjective, takes far more time to acquire, and has a great deal to do with our attitude. One can be knowledgeable, yet distant from the living God. But those who are wise know the Lord God by faith in His Son, Jesus Christ, and they also hold Him in awe and respect. “Fear of the Lord” is still the beginning of wisdom as well as the truest indicator of its presence in a person.

So how does one obtain wisdom? And now that we have come to the end of our search through the sayings of Israel’s wisest men, how can we continue our pursuit of God’s wisdom? Also, what are some ways to guard against falling back into our habit of substituting knowledge for wisdom?

I have four suggestions. We’ll examine them individually over the next four days.

From Living the Proverbs by Charles R. Swindoll, copyright © 2012. Reprinted by permission of Worthy Inspired., an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

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