Hello everybody, and welcome in to episode 92 of the Bible 2021 podcast. We are reading James 3 today and our focus is on how a wise person behaves. We are a daily 10 minute podcast, where we will dig in to the truth of the Word of God by reading one Bible chapter a day and discussing it. Welcome to new listeners in . Thanks for listening! Our goal is to encourage DAILY Bible reading, so you can jump in at any time and join with us. We want to invite as many people as possible to join us in daily Bible reading, so help spread the word and share the podcast Don’t forget about our web-page, Bible2021.com – contact page, show notes, transcript and more– Click here for our Bible 2021 reading plan
Wisdom is important, and we must earnestly seek it as followers of Jesus. Consider two important Proverbs:
Wisdom is supreme—so get wisdom. And whatever else you get, get understanding. Proverbs 4:7
Proverbs 16:16 Get wisdom— how much better it is than gold! And get understanding— it is preferable to silver.
The trouble with getting wisdom in 2021 is the biblical definition of wisdom has been so obscured, we hardly know what it is anymore, so let’s pause and consider 6 principles from the Word of God about wisdom:
- God is Wise:
Romans 11:33 “Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God! How unsearchable His judgments and untraceable His ways! 34 For who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been His counselor?”
- Jesus Is wise:
Luke 2:40 The boy grew up and became strong, filled with wisdom, and God’s grace was on Him.
Luke 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and with people.
Mark 6: 2 When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard Him were astonished. “Where did this man get these things?” they said. “What is this wisdom given to Him, and how are these miracles performed by His hands?
- Jesus promised His followers Wisdom:
Luke 21, 15 for I will give you such words and a wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict. 16 You will even be betrayed by parents, brothers, relatives, and friends.
- The way to get wisdom is to ASK IN FAITH:
James 1:5-7, “5 Now if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives to all generously and without criticizing, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith without doubting. For the doubter is like the surging sea, driven and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.”
- HOWEVER – There is a Worldly wisdom that is HARMFUL and A Godly Wisdom that is HARMONIOUS .
1 Corinthians 3:18-20, “18 No one should deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks he is wise in this age, he must become foolish so that he can become wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God, since it is written: He catches the wise in their craftiness; 20 and again, The Lord knows that the reasonings of the wise are meaningless.”
- GODLY WISDOM is peaceful and gentle.
James 3:13-18 Who is wise and has understanding among you? He should show his works by good conduct with wisdom’s gentleness. 14 But if you have bitter envy and selfish ambition in your heart, don’t brag and deny the truth. 15 Such wisdom does not come from above but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where envy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every kind of evil. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peace-loving, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without favoritism and hypocrisy. 18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who cultivate peace.
Let’s read our passage, and then ponder more about Godly wisdom.
One of my favorite human examples of the peace-loving gentleness of wisdom is John Newton. If you’ve ever worried about a friend, or child – that they are caught up in great wickedness or great foolishness and that there might not be any rescue, then look to the life of Newton. Early in his life, he was a rebel against God, and an awful human. He was a slave-boat captain, and cared little for people. He was transformed by God’s call and amazing grace, however, and became a mighty man of God, and a tremendous man of wisdom, peace, gentleness and humility. A friend, preparing to debate another person, wrote to Newton for advice, and Newton wrote back a wonderful letter that exhorted his friend to the kind of wisdom that James 3 points us to. We’ll close out today with just a couple of paragraphs from that letter, which is still good advice to us today.
Your aim, I doubt not, is good; but you have need to watch and pray for you will find Satan at your right hand to resist you; he will try to debase your views; and though you set out in defense of the cause of God, if you are not continually looking to the Lord to keep you, it may become your own cause, and awaken in you those tempers which are inconsistent with true peace of mind, and will surely obstruct communion with God.
Be upon your guard against admitting anything personal into the debate. If you think you have been ill treated, you will have an opportunity of showing that you are a disciple of Jesus, who “when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not.” This is our pattern, thus we are to speak and write for God, “not rendering verbal attack for verbal attack, but in contrast, we give blessing when attacked; knowing that we are called to such behavior:” The wisdom that is from above is not only pure, but peaceable and gentle; and the lack of these qualifications, like the dead fly in the pot of ointment, will spoil the flavor and effectiveness of our work
If we act in a wrong spirit, we shall bring little glory to God, do little good to our fellow creatures, and procure neither honor nor comfort to ourselves. If you can be content with showing your wit, and gaining the laugh on your side, you have an easy task; but I hope you have a far nobler aim, and that, sensible of the solemn importance of gospel truths, and the compassion due to the souls of men, you would rather be a means of removing prejudices against God’s people in a single instance, than to obtain the empty applause of thousands. Go forth, therefore, in the name and strength of the Lord of hosts, speaking the truth in love; and may he give you a witness in many hearts that you are taught of God, and favored with the unction of his Holy Spirit.”
End of the Show: Bible memory verse for April James 4:6 “But he gives greater grace. Therefore he says: God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
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