Knowledge vs. Wisdom

Sep 02, 2019

We can have all the knowledge in the world, we can know the Bible backwards and forward and not know anything in our hearts and souls, only in our minds. How are we to live what we know about Jesus’ teachings and the whole wisdom of the Bible? That takes a living, loving embrace of the Word and an openness to letting it change our lives. It takes us to the foot of the cross, to sit at Christ’s feet to gain wisdom beyond the knowledge, beyond just the mind’s engagement, to actually live in our lives the truth that He is showing us. It takes Christ telling us today and every day what to make of the Bible, how to interpret it today, how to do this task and what to say to this person, how to live our lives—all through His “still, small voice”[1] within us. All we have to do is to focus our lives on Him and allow Him to heal all that stands between us.

 

Wisdom is the crowning touch of all the teachings, it is the lived experience of the Word, beyond a dutiful commitment to them, beyond a letter-of-the-law adherence, beyond memorizing the Bible to a life lived in the mind of Christ. It requires of us an openness, a willingness to go with the Lord wherever He would take us. It requires a constant surrendering to the truth, to the substance of the Word. It requires a commitment with all of who we are, not just our minds and our ability to memorize. With our hearts, minds, souls and strengths(power or might[2]) is how Jesus calls us to love God[3] and that is what it takes to get to the wisdom stage of learning.

 

In a way it is easy to say heart, mind, soul and strength, but don’t forget, too, that this includes all that we are—our sins and our strengths, our failings and successes, our rebellion and our faithfulness, our talents and our struggles—every single part of us—is engaged with God and open to His revelation in our lives. And it is in our daily living that we express the wisdom we have gained from the Bible. How else could we leave behind the greed and envy, the anger and fear that the world brings out in us and give back the real fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control?[4]

 

It is only in our personal relationship with Christ through sitting in His presence that we gain the wisdom of the ages and express it in our lives through the fruit of the Spirit. This means that we have become observers of our own thinking, but not engaged emotionally with it. It means that we understand our own personal lens that produces the mind-numbing and reactive thinking that we took on as a child—the sum total of trying to make up for who we were thought to be plus the cultural, read world, overlay. All this can be seen and heard but not heeded as we turn our thoughts more and more to hearing what Christ is saying to us today, in this moment, to this person. We hear and do what He is asking of us. That is what it means to live in Christ’s mind, to be a part of the body of Christ, of the church.

 

Paying attention to the Lord and then doing what is asked of us is what leads to wisdom. We go from a focus on what our ego is asking of us to concentrating on that “still, small voice”[5] within us, so that we can lead lives that are fulfilling, purposeful and filled with joy and full engagement with God and with life itself. Fully human, fully alive, fully present to God—that is the goal of each of our lives. The total engagement was there in our creation, but got buried by the trappings, the goals of this world.

 

It—our true self– is still there within us, but we have to listen deeply to hear its call. We actually have no idea how to get there, only Christ can lead us there–the One who knows us so much better than we know ourselves. It is our choice whether we ever even begin to touch the truth within us, to begin to realize our own true selves. Believe in Jesus. Become a follower of His. Then become a disciple and you will find out who you were created to be!

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Questions to ponder over the week: How does God call me? And do I heed His call?  Does He speak to me through the beauty of nature? Or do I see His face in the person before me, no matter who that person is? Do I hear his “still, small voice”?[1 Kings 19:12] Do I pay attention to God throughout my days or am I a Sunday-only Christian? Do I seek His wisdom for me? Do I thrive in my life because I follow His voice?

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Blessings for the week: May we be the people of God who hear and heed God’s word to us. May we find fulfillment, purpose, and our destiny in His pearls of wisdom for us. May we hang on His every word.

 

If you want to read this blog post in full, go to patsaidadams.com/by-the-waters-blog/. If you’d like to receive my blog five days a week in your email, go to patsaidadams.com/by-the-waters-blog/. There’s a gift waiting for you.

 

Check out my other website, deepeningyourfaith.com, for information about spiritual practices and more writings about the spiritual life. New posts 2x a month. 9.1.19’s is entitled “All of me, why not take all of me.”

 

[1] 1 Kings 19:12

[2] Goodrick & Kohlenberger III, Zondervan NIV Exhaustive Concordance, 2nd Edition, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids MI, 1999, Strong’s #2709, p. 1559

[3] Matthew 22:36-40, Mark 12:28-34, Luke 10:25-28

[4] Galatians 5:22-3

[5] 1 Kings 19:12

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