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Jul 20/2015

Gate Community Summer - Day 29

If we want to be wise Christ-followers, then we must get wisdom. But how do we ‘get wisdom?’

Proverbs 4:1-7

Today we will look at two ways to GET WISDOM…

First, FEAR the LORD

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge” (Proverbs 1:7).

We fear many bad things: Crime, accidents, terrorism, losing a loved one, our parents, getting in trouble, each other, etc.

But why would we fear our loving Heavenly Father? Why would God tell us to fear Him?

The main Hebrew and Greek words translated fear in the Bible can have several shades of meaning, but in the context of the fear of the Lord, they convey a positive reverence. To fear is respect and revere God. This fear acknowledges God’s good intentions. This fear is produced by God’s Word (Ps. 119:38; Prov. 2:5) and makes a person receptive to wisdom and knowledge (Prov. 1:7; 9:10)”

If you study the Bible, there is no mistaking the repeated commands to fear God.

Consider these words of the psalmist: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; a good understanding have all those who do His commandments. His praise endures forever” (Psalm 111:10).

In Psalm 34 King David also tells us about learning the fear of the Lord: “Come, you children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD. … Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit. Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it” (verses 11, 13-14).

A healthy fear of God includes the fear of the consequences of disobedience.

So, rather than a paralyzing terror, the positive fear of the Lord taught in the Bible is a key element in change. It helps us have a proper, humble perspective of ourselves in relation to our awesome God; it helps us in times of temptation when we need to remember the serious consequences of disobeying God; and it motivates us to become more like our loving Creator.

Do you have a proper respect for God?

Second, DESIRE WISDOM WITH ALL YOUR MIGHT. Proverbs 4:8 says, "Prize her highly and she will exalt you; she will honor you for your embrace." These are not cheap words. To prize something and to embrace someone are signs of intense desire and love. Wisdom must be valuable for us. We must be willing to sell all in order to buy it: "Seek it like silver, and search for it as for hidden treasure" (Proverbs 2:4).

Third, since wisdom is found in the Word of God, we must apply ourselves in STUDY AND MEDITATION to know the Word and do it.

"The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple." (Psalm 19:7).

We must devote ourselves to know and understand the Word of the Lord. And here I think it is important to mention that not only should we study the Word of God, but we should also study the wise words of others who have written about God’s Word. We need to read the books of the greatest students of the God’s Word.

15 minutes a day can change your life forever!

- Scholars of the Past… St. Augustine, John Calvin, Martin Luther, Jonathan Edwards. C.S. Lewis, John Bunyan’s Pilgrims Progress, Charles Finney

- Scholars of Today… N.T. Wright, Francis Chan, Dallas Willard, A.W. Tozer, Andy Stanley, David Platt, Judah Smith

Your mind will be stretched, your heart enlarged, your zeal more fervent. Above all, you will have grown in wisdom. And it may not be long until someone says of you: "The words of his mouth are as deep waters; the fountain of wisdom is a gushing spring" (Proverbs 18:4).

Tomorrow we will look at two more ways to GET WISDOM!

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