Bible reading plan Bible reading plan

Living in Wisdom

30 July 2023

An open bible displaying Psalm 23. A red pencil crayon is resting on the bible and has been used to highlight 'The Lord's my shepherd'

By Jo Wilcox

In the Bible, Psalms and Proverbs are very similar in that neither feature stories or people.  To me, they reflect more of a person’s thoughts and prayers, with one slight difference.

 

Psalms is more about worshipping God through songs, feelings and desires.  A good example of this is the way David worshipped by “leaping and dancing” in 2 Samuel 6:16.  That verse alone describes how much King David loved to worship God, in spite of what people thought of him.

 

Proverbs, on the other hand, is all about wisdom.  In the opening description of my devotional bible, wisdom is said to guard our hearts against the enemy and at the same time give us peace.  God even wants to give us wisdom; all we have to do is ask for it.  After all, Proverbs was mainly written by the wisest man in the Bible, King Solomon, a man who pleased God so much when he asked for the gift of wisdom (1 Kings 3).

 

I personally have always preferred reading Proverbs as it gives the reader a lot to think about.

 

Turning to Proverbs 18, this chapter gives only some examples of the right and wrong ways of doing things; of the differences between a fool and a wise man.

 

For example, in the very first verse, it basically says that if you are unfriendly to someone else then you only care about yourself.  However, the Lord teaches us to love and treat others in the same way that we would like to be treated ourselves (Matthew 7:12).

 

In verse 3, it simply says that doing wrong will only lead to disgrace and contempt.  Yet verse 4 describes how good it is to be wise as wise words run deep to the core of our being.  Verse 6 shows the opposite of verse 4 in that the only outcome foolish words have is a violent one.

 

Jumping ahead to verses 13 and 14 expands on foolish words and this time describes how a person’s spirit can be crushed when lies are told against them.

 

Finally, my two favourite verses in this chapter perfectly sum up how God wants us to live in wisdom.

 

Firstly, back in verse 10 it says ‘the name of the Lord is a strong fortress, the godly run to him and are safe.’  This means that in times of trouble and doubt, all we have to do is confidently say His name and He will protect us from the enemy’s attacks.

 

The more personal verse for me, however, is verse 24:

 

‘There are “friends” who destroy each other, but a REAL friend sticks closer than a brother’

 

This verse hits a little closer to home for me as I am not good at learning who my true friends are outside of church but it’s not going to stop me from putting it into practice.

 

So, to those reading this blog, what are we, as Christians, going to do to show God that we would also like to be as wise and as pleasing as Solomon, who set a very high standard for us to follow?  We need to choose to put others’ needs before our own if we are to please God.

 

I suggest that we pray and continue to believe that God gives us the wisdom to always make the right choice.