The Blue Box Blog
by:
Bob Kinzel

The Other Wisdom

We’ve seen that biblical wisdom has many faces. It is not merely a synonym for “smart,” but has several other qualities: Wisdom is good, moral, and humble enough to admit its mistakes. Wisdom is relational, righteous, and godly. Wisdom rests on universal principles, is insatiably curious (always learning), and flexible enough to account for new data.

That is the wisdom of God, as fleshed out in the book of Proverbs, and summarized in James 3:17. But James (3:14-16) contrasts this level-headed, open-minded, loving way to live with another “wisdom.”

“Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.”

James is writing about hundreds of things happening all around us in our nation! Seen any bitterness out there lately, or selfish ambition? Any lying or jealousy? How about disorder and vile practices?

Let’s not be naive, misled by the world’s narratives. Listen past their rhetoric, and ask if what they are saying is wise. If people are telling you which lives matter, do you see love in their eyes? When someone explains the 13 different genders, is he/she/it reasonable? If someone pleads for a political party, can you trace its record to good things where it governs? When a professor is fired for quoting scientific research, does this promote free inquiry and the pursuit of truth?

Scripture helps anyone who so desires to identify true wisdom by its fruit and its faces. It’s not difficult. When you see rage, animosity, grasping for power, injustice, violence, and irrationality, walk away. You are not in the palace of the wise, but the den of demons.

“Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness.” James 3:17
“By their fruits you shall know them.” Matthew 7:16



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