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101: The Seven Pillars of Wisdom; Introduction

This week we begin a new series on The Seven Pillars of Wisdom: what they are, their importance and how to apply them in our lives. We will go into the specific definition of each one and show examples from the Bible to illustrate their practical applications.

The Book of Proverbs is about all wisdom. The book is a compilation of wise sayings that were composed by King Solomon who was the wisest man who had ever lived. What was Solomon’s purpose for giving us Proverbs? Solomon tells us in the very first six verses:

Proverbs 1:1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel; 

1:2 To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;  1:3 To receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, and judgment, and equity;  1:4 To give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion. 

1:5 A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:  1:6 To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.

True biblical wisdom involves God’s wisdom for right living and relationships; it requires the same understanding that God has concerning how we are to live and conduct ourselves; it refers to the knowledge of God or of the things that belong to God as related in His whole Word. The Book of Proverbs is all about wisdom and gives us much instruction in wise living according to God’s righteousness while living in a world that is hostile to the laws and principles of God.

When Solomon succeeded David as king over Israel God appeared to him in a dream and promised him anything he asked. Solomon requested that God would provide him with an understanding heart and the ability to discern between good and evil so as to rule the people of Israel with equity. This shows that even as a young man Solomon’s focus was on wanting to be wise. Solomon’s answer pleased the Lord so much, that along with wisdom and understanding, God granted him riches and honor more than any other king, either before, or after Solomon.

A demonstration of his wisdom came shortly after when two prostitutes were brought before him to judge over their dispute as to who was the rightful mother of the living son after one son had died. Solomon was given divine insight and then used that insight in wise handling of the situation that brought out who the true mother was and he was able to rightly judge in her favor. From this case, all Israel heard of the wise judgment of Solomon and this too brought him much respect and honor.

1 Kings 3:27 Then the king answered and said, Give her the living child, and in no wise slay it: she is the mother thereof. 3:28 And all Israel heard of the judgment which the king had judged; and they feared the king: for they saw that the wisdom of God was in him, to do judgment.

It was evident to all that King Solomon possessed extraordinary wisdom in many areas. Besides being a wise judge and ruler, he was also a prolific writer, poet, an expert botanist/biologist, a builder and artist, and a skilled statesman. 

His wisdom in architecture and management made Israel into the most excellent nation in all of the East. As a diplomat, he made treaties and alliances with the surrounding countries and this brought peace to his kingdom throughout most of his career. And of course, it was Solomon who built the beautiful Temple in Jerusalem. 

All of this wisdom was given to him by God. Solomon’s wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the east country, and all the wisdom of Egypt, he was the wisest of all men. He became famous throughout the land for his wisdom.

1 Kings 4:29 And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and largeness of heart, even as the sand that is on the sea shore.  4:30 And Solomon’s wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the east country, and all the wisdom of Egypt. 4:31 For he was wiser than all men; than Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, and Chalcol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol: and his fame was in all nations round about. 

4:32 And he spake three thousand proverbs: and his songs were a thousand and five.  4:33 And he spake of trees, from the cedar tree that is in Lebanon even unto the hyssop that springeth out of the wall: he spake also of beasts, and of fowl, and of creeping things, and of fishes. 

4:34 And there came of all people to hear the wisdom of Solomon, from all kings of the earth, which had heard of his wisdom.

As a side note: although God had gifted Solomon with unsurpassed wisdom, sadly, Solomon allowed his many wives to turn his heart away from God and he turned to idols. In spite of this, his words and teachings are recorded in Scripture for our edification and learning. In all of his writings Solomon teaches much on the value of seeking after wisdom. (In this series we will focus on the subject of wisdom and not on why Solomon departed from following after God.) This is what Solomon had to say in regard to the importance of obtaining wisdom:

Proverbs 4:5 Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth. 4:6 Forsake her not, and she shall preserve thee: love her, and she shall keep thee. 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

Ecclesiastes 2:13 Then I saw that wisdom excelleth folly, as far as light excelleth darkness

In the first chapter of Proverbs Solomon introduces the purpose of his proverbs: to know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding, and with that he sets the theme for the whole Book. In verse 20 of the first chapter he begins to speak of “wisdom” as a person. He calls this person “Wisdom” and uses feminine pronouns when telling us what she does and what she says.

He calls wisdom “she” and says she utters her voice in the streets and in the place of concourse; or in other words she is shouting out to the common people trying to get their attention in the places where they gather and mingle or perhaps congregate to hear the latest news.

Proverbs 1:20 Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets: 1:21 She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying,

The use of one thing (perhaps a common thing we all can relate to) to depict another thing (such as a deep spiritual truth) is a common tool that writers of Scripture often use to vividly get a message across. One of these literary tools is to use metaphors to illustrate certain attributes as things or persons speaking. An example is when the the voice of Abel’s blood cried out to God from the ground (Genesis 4:10). 

Of course literal blood of a person does not have a voice, neither can it speak. God was referring to the red stain on the ground of Abel’s shed blood that attested to the fact that Cain had killed his brother. In this way God is using poetic language to bring about a vivid image to the reader of the crime scene. (Another clear example of the use of allegories and symbolism is in Ezekiel 17, which is just one of many metaphors given to us throughout the Bible.)

The writers of Scripture (all of whom were inspired by God) use many types of metaphors, imagery, similes, symbolism, parables, allegories, and analogies as tools to bring home a profound message or teaching. Jesus Himself used these various literary tools throughout His ministry here on earth.

Depending on God’s intent, they can be used to make things seem more relevant and understandable to those who read Scripture; or they are sometimes used to hide or cloud the meaning from those who are not seeking after God, those who do not care about truly trying to obey His every Word.

Luke 8:10 And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.

Only those are who called and have God’s Holy Spirit can understand the mysteries of the Kingdom of God and the truth contained in the Bible. And it is only when we are doing all His commandments that God grants understanding; the more we seek to obey Him, the more understanding we will have for: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments….” (Psalm 111:10)

The things of God are foolishness to those who are not being led by God’s Spirit for it is only by God’s Spirit that God’s concepts and principles can be discerned. Even the most brilliant and learned men and women in the world cannot understand the spiritual things of God if they are of the world and are not seeking a relationship with Him.

1 Corinthians 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: 

2:8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.  

2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the 

2:10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. 

2:11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. 

2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 

2:13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 

2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

Those who are called in this age and are diligent to learn the spiritual things of God will someday be privileged to teach those who could not understand these things in this present age. Those who are carnal now will be called in the ages to come and if they repent and embrace all of God’s ways they too will eventually come to understand the wisdom of God.

In Proverbs Solomon uses the symbol of a woman on several occasions to teach his students certain lessons. In some instances he refers to a certain kind of woman as “the strange woman” which depicts a prostitute, [which can be a symbol for false religions] a type of all the things or persons that tempt us away from God and the keeping of His Words.

Then at other times he uses the idea of a woman as “wisdom” symbolizing the character quality of God, the same quality we must seek and incorporate into our own character. In these cases she (wisdom) is something that leads us toward God and to the keeping of every Word of God. As we embrace God’s wisdom we will take on more and more of His mind and will become like Him (the perfect man as we saw in Matthew 5 in our study of the Beatitudes) and the more we heed and take on the wisdom of God, the more we are shaped into God’s divine image, for He is the very essence of wisdom.

 

Wisdom Cries Out to Men

The concept of wisdom as a woman is first introduced in Proverbs 1:20. “She” cries out to mankind wanting them to listen to her and depart from their folly. She wants the attention of spiritually lost men and women so she raises her voice in order for all to hear her words and hear her counsel.

When Solomon uses wisdom as a “she” he is using a poetic metaphor which depicts a very wise person who is speaking on behalf of God and who wants to reach out to us on a very personal level. In this way he desires to leave a very profound and sober impression upon our minds, for the things he is trying to impart is vitally important to all men.

This an analogy of God calling and exhorting humanity to depart from their foolishness and then seek the knowledge that will save them and deliver them from being destroyed by their folly. He says to seek wisdom for it will lead to life, but if we refuse to forsake foolishness we will be destroyed.

Wisdom is personified as a woman and speaks in the first person of godly wisdom. Read the word “wisdom” as “the wisdom of God” and see the wonderful power of Solomon’s poetic message:

Proverbs 1:20 Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets: 

1:21 She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying, 

1:22 How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge? 

1:23 Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.

Toward the end of this chapter is a stinging indictment against all who will not heed the voice of wisdom; but then in the last verse a wonderful promise to all those who WILL hearken unto her (wisdom).

Proverbs 1:29 For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the Lord:  

1:30 They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof. 

1:31 Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices. 

1:32 For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them. 

1:33 But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.

In Proverbs 8 Solomon goes back to the metaphor of wisdom crying out to  humanity: “Unto you O men, I call; and my voice is to the sons of men.” (Verse 4)

 

The House of Wisdom

In Proverbs 9 Solomon speaks of the seven pillars of wisdom. He uses this analogy to teach us that there are certain essential qualities of wisdom that we must incorporate into our character if we want our lives to reflect God’s wisdom. In this chapter wisdom is again depicted as a woman but this time as one who has built a house [or it could be described as a palace] and the woman has hewn, or carved out, seven pillars which hold up the house.

Proverbs 9:1 Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn [carved] out her seven pillars:

What does Solomon mean when he refers to the seven pillars of Wisdom’s house?

First the definition of “pillar”?

The Hebrew word for “pillar” in this verse is ammud (Strong’s #5982) and means: apiece, pillar Or ammud {am-mood’}; from amad; a column (as standing); also a stand, i.e. Platform — X apiece, pillar. (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

The English definition of a pillar is: an upright shaft or structure, of stone, brick,  or other material, relatively slender in proportion to its height, and of any shape  in section, used as a building support, or standing alone, as for a monument: (Dictionary.com)

Solomon says that the woman has built herself a house and for that house she has cut out seven pillars. Pillars have been used since antiquity placed or carved into buildings or houses to support the roofs and to carry the weight of the surrounding structures. Throughout history pillars typically were made of strong materials such as stone, bricks, or solid wood.

In this chapter Wisdom is being symbolized as a woman who has built a permanent house for herself. If the pillars are supposed to be the intricate supports of a building [and here we see them as seven supports of Wisdom’s house or palace] just what do the seven pillars stand for? 

This Proverb is telling us that wisdom has supports, it dwells with certain things; these things are very important and they need to be incorporated into a person’s very fabric. The pillars are what make up the house and support it. There are seven of them and seven in the Bible connotes completeness or absolute. The Hebrew word for “seven” is sevah (Strong’s #7655).

So, in essence, Solomon is describing a woman who is building for herself a permanent place to live, and this house is supported by the perfect number of pillars. 

If someone builds themselves a house that is generally where they dwell. These seven make up the seven components that make for wisdom. This particular narrative about wisdom depicted as a woman really begins in Proverbs 8. To find out what the seven pillars are we go need to go back to the previous chapter to find the source where it tells us what the seven are. In chapter 8 Wisdom is again personified but this time as a person dwelling or living in a house. It tells us in verses 12 to 14 that this woman called Wisdom dwells with seven attributes…and they are seven attributes of wisdom with names of their own.

We are given a clue that this passage is referring to the seven pillars for it says here that “I wisdom” DWELL with seven things, and as we read the list we can perceive that all of them are components of wisdom (or different types of wisdom), therefore this must be talking about the pillars that are the necessary supports or columns of the house that are mentioned in Proverbs 9:1, and there just happens to be seven of them.

Proverbs 8:12 I wisdom dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge of witty inventions [discretion]8:13 The fear of the Lord is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.[The [reverent] fear and worshipful awe of the Lord includes the hatred of evil and the perverted mouth, also pride and arrogance] 8:14 Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom [sound judgement]: I am understanding; I have strength.

From these verses we see that “I” which is wisdom speaking in first person, dwells [resides] with certain things, and then she lists seven components of wisdom indicating that they are the seven pillars of wisdom that are referred to in Chapter 9. Again, the seven things or characteristics listed in Proverbs 8:12-14 are as follows:

  1. Fear [respect and awe] of the Lord
  2. Knowledge of witty inventions [i.e. the knowledge of God]
  3. Prudence  [gained through experience in living by God’s Word]
  4. Counsel  [instruction]
  5. Understanding
  6. Sound Wisdom [discretion]
  7. Strength [Virtue; the strength to do right]

Solomon depicts true wisdom as a house with seven pillars standing on the sure and solid rock foundation of TRUTH (God’s truth and His Law).

Every Word of God and Christ our Savior are the Foundation of godly wisdom. This is what Scripture has to say about who and what are the foundation of God’s House:

Isaiah 28:16 Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.

1 Corinthians 3:11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 11:10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.

The Seven Pillars of Wisdom must stand firmly on Every Word of God which is the foundation, and the pillars stand on that foundation otherwise they are not wisdom.

Pillars are very much a part of the house; along with the foundation they are of vital importance for they are supporting the beams, the walls, and the roof of the house; in addition they connect the rest of the house to the foundation. If one of these pillars is left out or becomes compromised in some way, the whole house will fall apart. Each pillar is a necessary component and support of the house.

Proverbs 14:1 Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.

In this verse Solomon again speaks of a wise woman and how she builds her house; it is in sharp contrast to how a foolish woman builds her house; in fact the foolish woman tears down her house with with her own hands…by ignoring wisdom’s call to live according to God’s godly principles. The foolish and sinning persons tear apart their houses and it is they themselves that do it.

This is an allegory that it is the wise person who builds his life upon God’s Word and contrasts that person to one who is foolish and ignores God’s instructions to live according to His whole Word and also who goes after idols and false teachers. Eventually a fool will bring his house (life) to ruins. On the other hand the wise person builds his or her life on God’s sure foundation of God’s commandments, Godly precepts and sound doctrine; and his or her household is built up and prospers.

 

The Seven Pillars Make up a Complete Package

Compare the seven traits of wisdom with the nine character traits that make up the Fruit of the Spirit. If one of these nine character traits are missing, the Fruit of the Spirit is lacking for all nine are comprised within the “Fruit of the Spirit.”

Galatians 5:22 

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Notice that “fruit” is singular, showing us that the fruit of the Spirit consists of the nine things that Paul lists in the verse.

You need all all nine of these components to have The Fruit of the Holy Spirit, just as you need all seven of The Pillars of Wisdom in order to have the whole house that makes up the wisdom of God. If you leave any element out of the list of what makes up the fruit of the Spirit, you do not have the fruit. It is the same with wisdom (God’s wisdom), a person needs all seven of these things (1) Prudence, (2) Knowledge and Discretion, (3) the Fear of the Lord, (4) Counsel, (5) Sound Wisdom, (6) Understanding, (7) Power and Strength. The seven pillars constitute the complete package of what Godly wisdom is all about.

 

The Wisdom that is From Above

The qualities that make up the fruit of the Spirit should be evident in the life of all of God’s called out ones in some degree or another, we have to grow in them just as natural fruit matures over time. If we look at each one of these qualities we can see that they strongly resemble the characteristics of wisdom as described in James 3. In the Book of James we are told that there are two kinds of wisdom: the wisdom of this world which is “earthly, sensual, devilish” (James 3:15) and the wisdom that comes from above. James describes the wisdom from above as follows:

James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality [humility], and without hypocrisy [or double mindedness.]

James is describing the wisdom that comes from God and calls it the “wisdom that is from above”. He describes what God’s wisdom is like and the things that it imparts to one who is growing in wisdom: This is what he has to say about what wisdom looks like:

  1. It is pure
  2. Then peaceable
  3. Gentle
  4. Easy to be entreated
  5. Merciful
  6. Full of good fruits
  7. Without hypocrisy

The apostle Paul does something similar in  1st Corinthians 13, in describing what true agape love looks like; he too speaks of love as if it is a person and then tells us that love [charity- agape love] does such and such. (See 1st Corinthians 13:4-8)

(1) Purity; Having neither spot nor wrinkle or any blemish of sin, but being completely clean from even the appearance of sin.  Being completely clean from all physical and spiritual uncleanness, washed clean by the washing of the water of the Word and the learning and living by every Word of God.

(2) Peaceable;  Peace-loving, not a striker not given to violence, being at peace with God and as far as possible with all men.

(3) Gentle [meek];  Tender, kind, not aggressive, or seeking to dominate others; is not a bully.

(4) Easy to be entreated; Reasonableness; willing to yield, is humble and willing to listen to the sound advice and counsel of others.

(5) Merciful;  Forgiving of the sincerely repentant as God has forgiven us, showing mercy to the unfortunate and those in need of mercy and kindness.

(6) Full of good fruits;  Full of the fruits of the Spirit of God: Love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance, all these things will be evident.

(7) Without hypocrisy;  Sincere, without pretense, practicing what we teach, having our conduct match with what God’s Word teaches, having no guile in the way we treat others.

These seven qualities correspond to what Solomon lists for they each fit within the framework of the Seven Pillars that are listed in Proverbs 8:12-14 and are the spiritual end products of integrating prudence, discretion, fear of the Lord, etc. into our lives.

 

The Definition of Wisdom

The Bible has a vast amount of instruction on the subject of wisdom. What is the meaning of the word “wisdom” and what does it mean to be “wise”?

The English dictionary defines wisdom as:

1. Having the power of discerning and judging properly as to what is true or right; possessing  discernment, judgment, or discretion.

2. Characterized by or showing such power; judicious or prudent: a wise decision.

3. Possessed of or characterized by scholarly knowledge or learning; learned; erudite: wise in the law.

4. Having knowledge or information as to facts, circumstances, etc.: We are wiser for their explanations). (Dictionary.com)

The Hebrew word for “wisdom is chokmah (Strong’s #2451) and means: skilful, wisdom, wisely, wit From chakam; wisdom (in a good sense) — skilful, wisdom, wisely, wit. see HEBREW chakam (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

The Hebrew word for “wise” is chakam (Strong’s #2449) and it means: “a mastery of the art of living in accordance with God’s expectations”. (Vines Expository Dictionary)

The Bible’s definition of wisdom expands even further upon what our culture defines as wisdom.

 

Wisdom is the entire Word of God 

The wisdom that is of God, is wisdom that the whole world needs and yet most of mankind rejects God’s wisdom; they spurn what God considers as wisdom and they mock the Word of God.

Satan is the biggest fool there is for he had so much going for him (more than any other created being) and he gave it all up because of his foolish pride. Six thousand years ago he imputed his foolishness to our first parents by convincing them that to follow him and his foolish ways was better than obeying their Creator. And all of Adam and Eve’s descendants have come under Satan’s sway; thinking that they know better than God in how they should live. Because of this, the whole world is one great giant mess and the mess is getting worse every day.

1 John 5:19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness. [the people of this world are under the power of the evil one who opposes God and all of His precepts].

Revelation 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

Just being born into this world and coming under Satan’s influence from birth we all have become fools and we live like fools….until God begins to call us. He wants us to choose wisdom and live. For it is by wisdom that puts us on the path to having a close intimate relationship with God, and by wisdom we can know the right ways of living. Wisdom leads us to God’s truth and the mysteries of the Kingdom of God and the way of salvation. It is a key that opens the door to knowing God and eventually becoming like Him who is the Wisest Being of all.

In Proverbs 2 Solomon instructs us that if we seek her (wisdom) with all of our heart and incorporate this wisdom into our day to day practices and into our very character, this wisdom will protect us and deliver us from the way of the evil man who speaks perverse things and will keep us from being lured by the strange woman (Proverbs 2:16-18).

Solomon uses very beautiful allegories throughout Proverbs and we can learn much by meditating upon his teachings and then putting them to practical use in our lives. No other source is more valuable than God’s Word which teaches us about how to be wise and the supreme importance of turning away from the foolishness that is in the world.

Proverbs 2:6 For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. 2:7 He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: he is a buckler to them that walk uprightly. 2:8 He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of his saints.

2:9 Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path. 2:10 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; 2:11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: 

2:12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things;

2:13 Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness; 2:14 Who rejoice to do evil, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked; 2:15 Whose ways are crooked [perverse], and they froward in their paths:

2:16 To deliver thee from the strange woman [a type of strange false religion], even from the stranger which flattereth with her words; 2:17 Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God. 2:18 For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. 2:19 None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life.

2:20 That thou mayest walk in the way of good [godly] men, and keep the paths of the righteous. 2:21 For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it.

2:22 But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it.

Paul too gives us sound advice in regard to the value of wisdom and to turn away from those who would deceive us into accepting the foolish philosophy of the world. 

Colossians 2:1 For I would that ye knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh;  

2:2 That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ; 

2:3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 

2:4 And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. 

2:5 For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ. 

2:6 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him:  

2:7 Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. 

2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

It is God’s wisdom that will lead those who commit to heeding the words of God and then commit that they will live His ways for the rest of their lives, and if they do this they will be blessed with eternal spiritual happiness and eternal life with God in His Kingdom. If we seek God’s wisdom with all of our hearts He will deliver us from the throes of death. The Seven Pillars of Wisdom bring life, whereas foolish living (the way that is apart from God) will only bring destruction and death.

 

What Is the Source of Wisdom?

This was a question that Job asked and it was revealed to Him and recorded for our learning. This is a question that all mankind should be asking and yet only a few really seek to know the answer. God tells us through Job very clearly where “wisdom” can be found:

Job 28:12 But where shall wisdom be found? and where is the place of understanding?

28:13 Man knoweth not the price thereof; neither is it found in the land of the living. 28:14 The depth saith, It is not in me: and the sea saith, It is not with me. 28:15 It cannot be gotten for gold, neither shall silver be weighed for the price thereof. 28:16 It cannot be valued with the gold of Ophir, with the precious onyx, or the sapphire.

28:17 The gold and the crystal cannot equal it: and the exchange of it shall not be for jewels of fine gold. 28:18 No mention shall be made of coral, or of pearls: for the price of wisdom is above rubies. 28:19 The topaz of Ethiopia shall not equal it, neither shall it be valued with pure gold.

28:20 Whence then cometh wisdom? and where is the place of understanding? 28:21 Seeing it is hid from the eyes of all living, and kept close from the fowls of the air.

28:22 Destruction and death say, We have heard the fame thereof with our ears.

28:23 God understandeth the way thereof, and he knoweth the place thereof. 28:24 For he looketh to the ends of the earth, and seeth under the whole heaven; 28:25 To make the weight for the winds; and he weigheth the waters by measure. 28:26 When he made a decree for the rain, and a way for the lightning of the thunder: 28:27 Then did he see it, and declare it; he prepared it, yea, and searched it out.

28:28 And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.

The Book of Proverbs provides many examples of what it means to be wise and what it means to be foolish. Wisdom starts with the fear of the Lord.

And if we see that we lack wisdom we are to go to God who is the source of wisdom.

James 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

 

In Conclusion

Mankind is offered two ways to live: The way of Wisdom or the way of Folly. Following are chapters 8 and 9 of Proverbs; both speak of how both (Wisdom and Folly) are sending out their invitations to the world and it is up to us as to which one we will listen to.

One way leads to understanding and the increase of years [eternal life]; and the other way leads to the depths of the grave. These chapters about wisdom are well worth reading and meditating upon for they contain the keys to a well-lived and successful life if we take their advice seriously to heart. (And especially in these end times when we will need all the wisdom we can get.)

The words contained in these chapters are priceless advice and yet most of the world thinks that this is nothing but fairy tales and/or not even worth reading and considering. But some day those who finally have their eyes opened will realize that they had the way to successful living and the words of life spelled out to them and it was right under their noses (for all who ever owned a Bible or had access to one).

But for now this message is to God’s spiritual children. He is inviting us to partake of His Feast, the richest of fare and the finest of wine that we might flourish and thrive on what He has to offer; and then if we take up His offer we will someday qualify to live the abundant life with Him in His Kingdom   FOREVER.

Here is Wisdom’s advice to God’s precious children; this cannot be put in any more beautiful words. Christ is speaking to you and to me. Please think upon and study these words and the message it contains. 

Proverbs 8:1 Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice? 8:2 She standeth in the top of high places, by the way in the places of the paths. 8:3 She crieth at the gates, at the entry of the city, at the coming in at the doors.

8:4 Unto you, O men, I call; and my voice is to the sons of man. 8:5 O ye simple, understand wisdom: and, ye fools, be ye of an understanding heart. 8:6 Hear; for I will speak of excellent things; and the opening of my lips shall be right things. 8:7 For my mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness is an abomination to my lips. 8:8 All the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing froward or perverse in them. 8:9 They are all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge.

8:10 Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold. 8:11 For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it.

8:12 I wisdom dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge of witty inventions8:13 The fear of the Lord is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate. 8:14 Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom: I am understanding; I have strength8:15 By me kings reign, and princes decree justice. 8:16 By me princes rule, and nobles, even all the judges of the earth.

8:17 I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me. 8:18 Riches and honour are with me; yea, durable riches and righteousness. 8:19 My fruit is better than gold, yea, than fine gold; and my revenue than choice silver. 8:20 I lead in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of judgment: 8:21 That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures.

8:22 The Lord possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old. 8:23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was. 8:24 When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water. 8:25 Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth: 8:26 While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.

8:27 When he [God planned] prepared the heavens, I [wisdom] was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth: 8:28 When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep: 8:29 When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:  8:30 Then I was by him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him; 8:31 Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights were with the sons of men.

8:32 Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways. 8:33 Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not.

8:34 Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. 8:35 For whoso findeth me findeth [eternal] life, and shall obtain favour of the Lord. 8:36 But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.

Proverbs 9:1 Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars:

 

A prophecy of the Passover sacrifice and observance

9:2 She hath killed her beasts [sacrificed]; she hath mingled [prepared] her wine; she hath also furnished her table [with the Passover meal, symbolizing commitment to live by the wisdom of every Word of God]  9:3 She hath sent forth her maidens [virgin messengers, symbolizing spiritual purity calling out a people to faithfulness to God]: she crieth upon the highest places of the city, 9:4 Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,

9:5 Come, eat of my [the unleavened bread of the Word of God] bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled. 9:6 Forsake the foolish [repent of sin], and live; and go in the way of understanding.  

Only a fool would not respond to the offer of godly wisdom which b rings eternal life in peace and prosperity.

9:7 He that reproveth a scorner getteth to himself shame: and he that rebuketh a wicked man getteth himself a blot. 9:8 Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee.  

Those seeking true wisdom will grow ever wiser through living by every Word of God

9:9 Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.

9:10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. 9:11 For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased [to eternal life].  

If we are wise enough to seek the wisdom of God we shall become much wiser still, but if we scorn the wisdom which is every Word of God we will bear our foolish iniquity.

9:12 If thou be wise, thou shalt be wise for thyself: but if thou scornest, thou alone shalt bear it.

The fallen sinful woman represents false religion and cunning words which try to deceive people away from the wisdom of every Word of God.

9:13 A foolish woman is clamorous: she is simple, and knoweth nothing. 9:14 For she sitteth at the door of her house, on a seat in the high places of the city, 9:15 To call passengers who go right on their ways: 9:16 Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: and as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him, 9:17 Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant. 9:18 But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell.

Solomon instructs us in the Book of Proverbs that godly wisdom is essential for a meaningful and successful life, not only in the secular world in which we have to live; but also that the wisdom of God is absolutely necessary to find eternal and to live successfully forever.

King Soloman says “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all your getting get understanding.” (Proverbs 4:7)

Jesus teaches about the wise and foolish builders at the end of His Sermon on the Mount

Matthew 7:24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:  7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

7:26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:  7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

The Fear of the Lord in the Seven Pillars of Wisdom, is not the first one as per the seven pillar list but this component of wisdom is foundational to the other pillars,  for wisdom STARTS with the fear of God.

Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.

If we do not fear to disobey God or if we have no reverence or respect for Him and His laws; there is no way possible that God can work with and teach His wisdom to such a one.

If a person is unwilling to take the very first step by coming to fear God, to reverence, honor, and respect Him and fear to disobey Him, then he or she will remain in rebellion against God [just as Satan and his demons are]. 

But God has been calling a certain few (John 6:44) down though history right up to this present time to forsake the foolishness of this world.  Where do we find wisdom? All of God’s Word is wisdom but we must seek it, imbibe of it, engrave it permanently upon our hearts; and then if we have a reverent fear of God, we will have a burning desire to depart from evil….THAT IS WISDOM.

Again, hear the cry of Wisdom; if we hear her voice and apply the wisdom of God, He will pour out His Spirit upon His Ekklesia. Christ is getting His Bride ready for His soon return; He wants a wife that is full of the WISDOM of God ruling by His side. 

Proverbs 1:20 Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets: 1:21 She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying, 1:22 How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge? 1:23 Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.

 

Dear Brethren, we have been called to embrace godly wisdom, and we have the opportunity to do so at this time, it is more important than anything else we could be doing:  Now is the time to diligently seek her with all of our might.

First, we are called to God and sincerely repent, fearing [respecting the Word of God], and then we commit to live by every Word of God.  Then God gives us the gift of His Holy Spirit of wisdom.

Constance Belanger and James Malm

 

Feature Scriptures

Proverbs 3:13-15

3:13 Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. 3:14 For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than  fine gold. 3:15 She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.

 

 

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