Proverbs – Wisdom That Works – Part 6
Wisdom is Better – Proverbs 3:13-35
Crosspoint – Dave Spooner – July 18th, 2021
- Wisdom continues to call out to us, everywhere you go, there she is offering to help all who will listen. Each of us has a choice to follow and learn from her or go our way on our own. The ways of wisdom and her companionship are far better than any other way we could go and are the truest and best companions as we learned from the first part of this chapter, if we follow her ways, we will be richly rewarded.
- Wisdom’s blessings and benefits are explained to us in our passage this morning. Please pay careful attention to her words, in them are the wisest of counsel and promises that are true. Listen well to her words, treasure them in your heart and benefit from all that she offers.
Gain the blessings of wisdom
Prov 3:13-18 ESV
Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, 14 for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold. 15 She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her. 16 Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor. 17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. 18 She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her; those who hold her fast are called blessed.
- We are instructed to “find, get, lay hold of and hold fast” to wisdom and understanding. We are to seek her and desire her more than money or anything else this world has to offer. Because she is more valuable and the gain from her is greater than all the things of the world combined.
- These are the verses the Lord pointed out to me when I was really struggling with my choice to sell our house in the Twin Cities and move to northern MN to work with a church. Those four years had many difficulties for us, and the weekend we were moving from there to Rockford, the house we had previously owned sold for $100,000 more than we paid for it. If we had stayed in that house, my family and I would have gained all that money, and I was struggling. Through these verses, God showed me that what I gained through wisdom was of far greater value than what I would have gained from not going. This was of great comfort to me and settled the issue in my heart.
- The blessings gained from wisdom are long life, riches, honor, pleasantness, and peace. These things money can’t buy, which are of the greatest value and what our soul really desires. Wisdom is “a tree of life” – it continues to provide for us year after year, and those who possess wisdom and hold fast to her are called “blessed.” Blessing comes from God and many times comes through wisdom. Ask for it, seek it, follow it, cling to it and you will be deeply and dearly rewarded. Seek and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened; ask, and you will receive; follow, and you will be rewarded.
Use the power of wisdom
Prov 3:19-20 ESV
The Lord by wisdom founded the earth; by understanding he established the heavens; 20 by his knowledge the deeps broke open, and the clouds drop down the dew.
- Wisdom is an incredibly powerful force. The Lord, who is the source of wisdom, used wisdom when he created the world. Think about the earth and all of creation, how it works together so perfectly (I would recommend the documentary “one strange rock” narrated by Will Smith).
- Wisdom was the shaping power in creation and is the way we can create as well. It is a powerful force, and through her, we can create things of value, beauty, and significance – from relationships to organization, to anything we can create and accomplish. Seek wisdom and harness her increasable power of creation.
Enjoy the protection of wisdom
Prov 3: 21-26 ESV
My son, do not lose sight of these—keep sound wisdom and discretion, 22 and they will be life for your soul and adornment for your neck. 23 Then you will walk on your way securely, and your foot will not stumble. 24 If you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. 25 Do not be afraid of sudden terror or of the ruin of the wicked, when it comes, 26 for the Lord will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught.
- Did you see all of the blessings of wisdom for protection in this passage? Through wisdom, you will walk in your ways securely. You will not take undo risk or put yourself in danger nor stumble in your journeys. When it is time to sleep, you will not lay awake at night in fear and worry, you will have sleep that is sweet and not bitter. You will not be afraid of “sudden terror” – things that will sneak up on you and overtake you, you will see them coming and take precautions. You will have your confidence in the Lord, and He will keep your foot from being caught as in a trap and not cause you to be stuck or entrapped in something that will keep you from moving on or moving forward.
- Wisdom will also teach us how to have good relationships with our neighbors and those who live around us. If you have tension in the place where you live, follow the instructions of wisdom and you will bring blessings on yourself and those around you.
Be the neighbor of wisdom
Prov 3:27-32 ESV
Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it. 28 Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come again, tomorrow I will give it”—when you have it with you. 29 Do not plan evil against your neighbor, who dwells trustingly beside you. 30 Do not contend with a man for no reason, when he has done you no harm. 31 Do not envy a man of violence and do not choose any of his ways, 32 for the devious person is an abomination to the Lord, but the upright are in his confidence.
- Help your needy neighbor (27-28) – If your neighbor has done something for you, pay them back for it (in words, or deeds or payment). If they ask something of you and you have it to give, give it to them now. This will lead to good relationships with those around you.
- Protect your innocent neighbor (29-30) – don’t take advantage of your neighbors, treating them badly or causing them loss or harm. Don’t be the cause of your neighbor’s retaliation and strife.
- Avoid your violent neighbor (31-32) – don’t learn to be a violent person or use violence against them, don’t be devious in your relationship with them, thinking of ways to cause them harm or take advantage of them. Know the Lord will deal with them and choose to live uprightly in His sight. God will draw close to you and be on your side.
Inherit the honor of wisdom
Prov 3:33-35 ESV
The Lord’s curse is on the house of the wicked, but he blesses the dwelling of the righteous. 34 Toward the scorners he is scornful, but to the humble he gives favor. 35 The wise will inherit honor, but fools get disgrace.
- There is a “curse” on the house of the wicked – the Lord is against it and will not watch over it and will not prosper it. God will bless the dwelling of those who are righteous. It will be a place of blessing, peace, harmony, and joy. If you choose to scorn the Lord, He will scorn you as well but if you listen in humility and follow His ways, you will find favor with the Lord. Those who are wise will inherit honor. You will be a person of honor and a person who is honored in many ways, from invitations to information to peace and satisfaction. But if you are a fool, you will get disgrace, which comes in many forms, hardships, and heartaches.
Conclusion and Communion
- Seek, look for, cling to wisdom, follow her guidance, and you will be blessed and greatly benefited. Do not let this passage leave your mind or your grasp. Spend time today or tonight looking it over and place it in your mind and heart. Treasure wisdom and gain from her. Choose her way and be greatly benefited. Gain the blessing of wisdom, use the power of wisdom, enjoy the protection of wisdom, be a neighbor of wisdom and inherit the honor of wisdom. Rejoice and be glad, for great will be your reward!