The Wisdom of God

Is the wisdom of God available to us?

The wisdom of God is a gift from Him. We read in James 1:5, “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”

This verse is contained in a larger passage and it is important to read it in its context:
    "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do" (James 1:2-8).
What does wisdom have to do with enduring trials? Perhaps this is James' exhortation that it takes wisdom to trust God. Even when we don't know why a trial is taking place, we can learn to trust God through it. A great biblical example is Job. He was not given wisdom to change his circumstances. Instead, God gave him the wisdom to trust.

"While human beings are, at least, in part responsible for their moral development, wisdom comes only from God. In the New Testament generally, wisdom is allied to understanding God's purposes and plan and indicates a determination to live accordingly. We need wisdom to know how to cope with trials, for wisdom provides a clear view of our situation from God's perspective."1

The Fear of the Lord and the wisdom of God
Proverbs 1:7 speaks of the wisdom of God, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

For a believer, "the fear of the Lord" is a reverence for God. Hebrews 12:28-29: “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our ’God is a consuming fire.’”

The fear of the Lord causes us to humble ourselves to surrender. Proverbs 1:7 links an understanding of this fear with wisdom. Until we understand how God views sin, fear His judgment, and revere His ultimate authority, we cannot begin to have wisdom.

Fearing God means having such a reverence for Him that it has a great impact on the way we live our lives. The fear of God is respecting Him, obeying Him, submitting to His discipline, and worshiping Him in awe.

1Nystrom, David P. The NIV Application Commentary: James, 50.

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