Over years of reading through Proverbs, it’s impossible to estimate how many times this biblical book of wisdom has amazed and rebuked me. It is both simple and profound, filled with warning and promise. For these reasons, and many more, I never grow tired of it and am usually fed a nugget of truth when I read the chapter of the day.
However, another way to study the book is to do so according to its main topics. For example, the six categories of Proverbs. Or you can take a topic mentioned in the book and trace it through the Bible, much like my very first Bible does, The Thompson Chain Reference Bible. There are many good study resources for Proverbs, but one of my favorite small ones is Jim Newheiser’s Opening Up Proverbs, which is a wonderful tool for personal Bible study, small groups, or one-to-one discipleship. Yesterday, in a conversation with one of my counselors-in-training, I recommended it again. So, this morning, I pulled it off the shelf and decided to share some snippets with you.
Seek the Treasure of Wisdom
The second chapter of Proverbs is a call to seek wisdom with all that we have and to be receptive to receiving it from others. There should be an earnestness about our desire for wisdom. “In 1849 thousands of men were willing to leave their comfortable homes to travel to far-away California, where they lived in tents and spent day after day in back-breaking labour, all because they hoped to find a few nuggets of gold. Would that we approached our personal Bible reading, the sermons we hear at church, and Bible classes with the same fervor. Merely going through the motions of religion will not make you wise. You must fully exert yourself and dig deeply.”
4 Ways Wisdom Will Bless You
The second chapter of Proverbs provides incentive for seeking wisdom with all our heart. Here are four ways wisdom brings blessing.
- You will know God personally (Proverbs 2:5-8). “Through wisdom comes a proper relationship with God. You will fear the Lord, experiencing his awesome transcendence. You also will enjoy a personal, intimate knowledge of and fellowship with Him.”
- Wisdom will transform you as a person (Proverbs 2:9-11). “When wisdom enters your heart, you will become a changed person….Wisdom also gives us discernment. Just as a mother has a trained nose to sniff the milk in the refrigerator to know it is spoiled, wisdom will enable us to distinguish between good and evil.”
- Wisdom will deliver you from dangerous people (Proverbs 2:12-22). “Proverbs seeks to prepare us to live in the real world, where there are many threats to our virtue.” Its wisdom will protect you from evil men and loose women. By the way, this is one reason Proverbs is so important to parenting!
- Wisdom will keep you safe (Proverbs 2:20-21). “By wisdom you will have good companions, as opposed to evil men and strange women. By wisdom you will walk in righteousness.”
Wisdom is found in the written Word of God and the living Word of God, Jesus Christ. Meditate on the Word where you will find Christ, “in whom are the treasures of wisdom (Col. 2:3; Prov. 2:4). He is the path to life (John 14:6; Prov. 2:20).”