For the last week or so I have been meditating on the small phrase in Proverbs 4, “get wisdom.”Â Here is the context:
Proverbs 4:1-9 Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction, and be attentive, that you may gain insight, 2 for I give you good precepts; do not forsake my teaching. 3 When I was a son with my father, tender, the only one in the sight of my mother, 4 he taught me and said to me, “Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments, and live. 5 Get wisdom; get insight; do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth. 6 Do not forsake her, and she will keep you; love her, and she will guard you. 7 The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom, and whatever you get, get insight. 8 Prize her highly, and she will exalt you; she will honor you if you embrace her. 9 She will place on your head a graceful garland; she will bestow on you a beautiful crown.” (ESV)
So here are my random musing on how do we “get wisdom?”
Proverbs seems to indicate that we “get wisdom” by pursuing it over everything else.
Proverbs 16:16 How much better to get wisdom than gold! To get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver. (ESV)
How do we pursue it?
Proverbs 4:1-9 indicates that we pursue it by listen to the wise. Â This tells me that all who want to “get wisdom” need to be humble enough to continue to have a learner’s heart no matter how “wise” they may be, no matter “what” they do, what “position” they hold.
But there is more here, it’s not just listening to the wise–it is desiring wisdom more than anything.Â Which makes we wonder about the value we place have placed on wisdom.Â Have we truly valued wisdom?Â Have I truly valued wisdom?Â Or have I been more enamored by knowledge than wisdom, innovation more than longevity of wisdom, power more than the steadiness of the wise, prestige more than the humility of wisdom?
How do we pursue wisdom–it must be a priority.Â There is urgency in the voice of Solomon, “Get wisdom, and whatever you get, get insight.”Â
Of all the things we pursue–wisdom should be the foremost. Does this should sacrilegious?Â Almost, but pursuing wisdom, “getting wisdom” will require that we “get God.”Â There is no wisdom apart from the fear of the Lord.
Job 28:28; Proverbs 1:7; 2:4-5; 9:10; Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 all tell us, in one way or another, that the “fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”
So–do I want to “get wisdom”?Â I need to draw nearer to the Lord.Â The closer I get to the Lord, the more I realize His awesome holiness, unmatched beauty and uniqueness and the more I realize how unlike Him I am.Â This could lead me to despair or with the goal of “getting wisdom” it can drive me to know Him better, to be transformed more into His image.Â Here is where the fear of the Lord becomes reality.Â I fear failure and rather than replacing it with effort, I replace it with headlong pursuit of Him, this leads to “get wisdom.”
Coming full circle, to “get wisdom” I begin to ask the question, not–“What is the right thing to do?”–but “What is the wise thing to do?”Â Because there are things that are allowed and okay–but may not be the wisest for me.Â There are activities and involvements that may be fine for other believers to pursue, but may not be the wise thing for me.Â Â And since I want to get wisdom I must pursue the wise course.
Get wisdom, with all your heart
Get wisdom, with all your affection
Get wisdom, with all your energy
Get wisdom, with the wise
Get wisdom, Get wisdom, Get wisdom