Summary: James shows the value of wisdom as part of living the Christian life
The Wisdom Driven Life
August 13, 2006
The story is told of a man in China who raised horses for a living. When one of his prized stallions ran away, his friends gathered at his home to mourn his great loss. After they had expressed their concern, the man raised this question: "How do I know whether what happened is bad or good?" A couple days later the runaway horse returned with several strays following close behind. The same acquaintances again came to his house -- this time to celebrate his good fortune. "But how do I know whether it’s good or bad?" the old gentleman asked them. That very afternoon the horse kicked the owner’s son and broke the young man’s leg. Once more the crowd assembled -- now to express their sorrow over the incident. "But how do I know if this is bad or good?" the father asked again. Well, only a few days later, war broke out. The man’s son, however, was exempted from the military service because of his broken leg.
There is a deep need for wisdom in the day to day functioning of life. The Bible over and over again communicates the way God uses His wisdom in the lives of His people.
Joseph was given wisdom to interpret dreams
David asked for wisdom in dealing with his own personal sin
Solomon asked God for wisdom and was made the wisest man on earth
Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednigo were given great wisdom
Jesus was said to have grown in both knowledge and wisdom
Wisdom is the way that God imparts practical abilities for the impact on daily life. God gives us wisdom so that we might be able to live our lives in abetter manner for His glory.
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. 6 But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does.
As James continues to communicate the appropriate way to handle trials and difficulties, he shows the value of wisdom in daily life. The truth that James shows is the fact that wisdom drives our lives and helps us to live for God.
In 1:2-8 James communicates three major principles for living for God
1.) Trials happen – The simple fact of life is that trials come to people just because that is the way life is
2.) Triumph is ours – Jesus gives us the ability to live victoriously over the trials of life
3.) Trusting God is the way to wisdom – Wisdom allows us to see life from the perspective of God.
Truth about wisdom
What is wisdom?
Wisdom is more than just mere knowledge, it is the ability to take knowledge and apply it to situations in life. Wisdom is the ability to know facts and then being able to put them into action.
Knowledge is the ability to take things apart, wisdom is the ability to put them together. Wisdom is the right use of knowledge. We need wisdom so that we will not waste the opportunities that God gives us to grow. Sometimes the trials of life are just stepping stones in the spiritual growth process.
The Hebrews were constantly in pursuit of wisdom. They placed a high value on wisdom for life and the book of Proverbs is proof. Wisdom allows the application of knowledge to the process of daily living. Wisdom is more than just common sense, it is an ability to know the
Wisdom is the ability to apply the Truth of God to every situation in life - Unknown
James communicates three things about wisdom
1.) It is practical
Wisdom from God relates to life. Wisdom allows a person to apply their intelligence to daily living. Wise people are more than idea makers, they are people who put ideas into action. Intelligence allows us to see details and reason in life but wisdom allows us to see reason and then take action
2.) It is divine
God’s wisdom flows from His throne and into a person’s life. Wisdom begins with a respect for God and then leads to living by God’s direction and results in the ability to tell right from wrong.
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding Proverbs 9:10
3.) It is Christlike
Being wise is being like Christ. Jesus is described as the wisdom of God
Practical Applications of Wisdom