WHAT IS WISDOM?

imageI KINGS 3:9: “Give me a heart that listens so that I can judge your people and tell the difference between good and evil. After all, who can judge this great people of yours?” (GW‬)‬

OBSERVATION: What is “Wisdom”? Is it amassing great volumes of knowledge? Is it found in the length of years that we live, or the level of experience we attain? Is it marked by a degree of recognition or the accolades of others? Is it simply the “Fear of the Lord”, or is it something more? In Solomon’s prayer and request to the Lord we get a glimpse at the very essence of true wisdom. And the good news – it is attainable for all!

True wisdom does not depend on one’s age. In fact, there are as many foolish old people as there are young people. Simply the years we live does not measure the wisdom we possess. There are many who live their entire lives simply making the same mistakes over and over again, never really learning anything. Wisdom is not dependent upon age, but true wisdom will grow with age. Solomon made his request to the Lord as a very young man.

  • “LORD my God, although I’m young and inexperienced, you’ve made me king in place of my father David. I’m among your people whom you have chosen. They are too numerous to count or record.” (‭‭1 Kings‬ ‭3:7-8‬ ‭GW‬‬)

Looking over the vastness of the responsibility he had just received, Solomon is humbled before the Lord. The essence of true wisdom is not simply humility, but humility is the prerequisite for receiving true wisdom. It is only the humble heart, that realizes it does not possess the wisdom it needs, and cries out to the Lord, that positions one’s life to receive God’s wisdom.

True wisdom is simply this – “A Heart That Listens”! This is what Solomon prayed for. He knew his knowledge was limited. He knew his experience was that of a novice. He knew the path before him was unchartered and unknown. Yet, he remembered the words of his father David, given to him right before David’s death.

  • “I’m about to leave this world. Be strong and mature. Fulfill your duty to the LORD your God. Obey his directions, laws, commands, rules, and written instructions as they are recorded in Moses’ Teachings. Then you’ll succeed in everything you do wherever you may go.” (‭‭1 Kings‬ ‭2:2-3‬ ‭GW‬‬)

And there it was, the pathway for true wisdom – “Obey his directions, laws, commands, rules, and written instructions as they are recorded in Moses’ Teachings.” How could a young man like Solomon do this without losing his way?

There was only one way – he needed a “heart that listens”.  

This is the essence of wisdom. This is the beginning step, the continuing step, and also the finishing step. We never outgrow this call. We never reach the place where we do not need to “hear anew”! We must constantly and continually hear the voice of the Lord.  The “fear of the Lord” is the beginning of wisdom. 

The “heart that listens” is the continuation and completion of wisdom!

  • “Trust the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths smooth. Do not consider yourself wise. Fear the LORD, and turn away from evil. ⌊Then⌋ your body will be healed, and your bones will have nourishment.” (‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭3:5-8‬ ‭GW‬‬)

Lord, give me a humble “heart that listens”, I pray…

In Jesus Name!

About Kirk's Devotional Journal

Kirk L. Zehnder is the Founder of Resurrection Christian Outreach. RCO is a ministry that promotes the growth and vitality of the local church through speaking engagements, seminars, various media tools, and written curriculum and books. This ministry was started over 35 years ago by Kirk as a means to strengthen the church that he was pastoring. It grew as Kirk began to share these tools with other churches. Today many of the materials are being used by local churches both nationally and internationally. Kirk's Devotional Journal is a result of struggling with Bible reading programs that never seemed to work. Kirk feels the Lord helped him discover an easy to follow program to Read, Reflect, Pray, and Journal through the Bible in one year. This program is called L.I.F.E. Unlike other programs there are no dates to follow. You can miss a day and still complete your reading. You never feel like the dates and verses you missed are chasing you. You are free to enjoy your daily Biblical journey and listen to the voice of The Lord. For more information on the L.I.F.E. plan, send an email to rcoutreach@aol.com. Kirk is also available for speaking engagements, seminars, and retreats. With over 40 years of professional business and pastoral ministry experience, Kirk brings a unique combination of practical wisdom, humor, and Biblical insight. If you would like Kirk to speak at your church, school, or ministry, please send an email to rcoutreach@aol.com and we will get back to you as soon as possible to discuss your opportunity.
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