Summary: Walking with God gives us an uncommon wisdom for living life that is not available to us through any other means.
I have been so blessed throughout my life to have people in my life who have been willing to teach me. I’m not talking about lessons learned from books, although I’ve learned some good lessons from classes that I’ve had throughout the years. The lessons that have made the biggest impression on me are lessons that I’ve learned from people who were wise, not necessarily educated, but wise. They are people who have experienced life, the good and the bad. They’ve taught me lessons about life: How to relate to people, how to give my all regardless of how big or small the task, how to save for a rainy day, and avoid spending money on non-essentials. They’ve taught me to love people and use money—and never confuse the two. They’ve taught me to value and respect all people. They’ve taught me that the most important thing is life to know the Lord as Savior and Lord of my life and as my very best friend.
I’ve learned some great lessons, unbelievable lessons, from some truly great people, but there is no lesson that I’ve ever learned that can even begin to compare to the lessons I’ve learned from God’s Word. I share that story with you today because I hear many people say, “I’ve tried to read the Bible, but it just didn’t make any sense to me.” My friend, I don’t buy it. If somebody like me can read God’s Word and gain such wonderful lessons from its pages then absolutely anybody can. I’m not saying that it is easy, but it wasn’t easy the first time you or I tried to ride a bike either. The first few times we tried anything wasn’t easy, but if we were persistent and determined then eventually it came. And so it is with the Word of God. If we will cry out to God in our ignorance, confess our lack of understanding, and stay put before God’s Word, then God will teach us. It is amazing how God teaches those who persistently come before His presence, seeking to understand His Word day-in and day-out.
Our study of Proverbs 16 this morning is a great illustration of the uncommon wisdom that will come to those who take time to allow the Lord to teach them through His Word. Let’s take a look at our Scripture for today found in Proverbs 16:16-20.
16 It is better to get wisdom than gold, and to choose understanding rather than silver! 17 Good people stay away from evil. By watching what they do, they protect their lives. 18 Pride will destroy a person; a proud attitude leads to ruin. 19 It is better to be humble and be with those who suffer than to share stolen property with the proud. 20 Whoever listens to what is taught will succeed, and whoever trusts the LORD will be happy. (Proverbs 16:16-20 NCV)
There is so much uncommon wisdom available for you and me in these little 5 verses of Scripture. All of the wisdom in verses 17-20 flow from verse 16. 16 It is better to get wisdom than gold, and to choose understanding rather than silver! If we make the right choice in verse 16 then we will be able to see the wisdom in the counsel that follows in verses 17-20, but if we choose the pursuit of endless accumulation and acquisition then none of the wisdom that follows will make any sense.
What will you allow to guide you through this life? What drives you? Are you set on getting more and more? You may have just gotten a promotion, but you’ve already set your sights on the next level. You are making more money than you’ve ever made in your life, but it’s not enough—you want more. Is the pursuit of more what’s driving you today? Or are you allowing godly wisdom and understanding to lead you through each new day? Is godly wisdom determining your steps? Has godly wisdom called you to downsize rather than super size? Has godly understanding led you to spend less time on your business and personal pleasure so that you can spend more time on God’s business and His passion? We need to allow the Lord to examine our hearts and show us the truth of what is driving us today. Solomon says that we should choose to pursue more and more wisdom and understanding instead of more and more gold and silver. Understanding and wisdom will endure my friends. Just ask Bunker Hunt.
Nelson Bunker Hunt is the second oldest son of H. L. Hunt, the deceased Texas oil tycoon. In 1921, H. L. acquired his first well in Arkansas and just four years later he had made $600,000.00 through his oil ventures. H. L. vacillated between being broke and rich several times before Fortune magazine labeled him the richest man in the United States on April 5, 1948. He was worth $263 million and producing 65,000 barrels of oil a day at the time.