Today is the third day to examine the passage of Proverbs 22.17-21, the introduction to one of the main divisions of the book. (Here are the first and second parts.) The third part of this passage cites a great benefit and necessity in the world:
Have I not written thirty sayings for you, sayings of counsel and knowledge, to show you true and reliable words, so that you may give accurate answers to those who sent you?
Proverbs 22.20-21 NET
What passes as wisdom in the world is, in truth, little more than selfishness disguised as discernment, making use of half truths and subtleties.
- “God wants me to be happy, so I can get a divorce.”
- “We have to live life to the fullest while we’re young.”
- “It’s good to give our children all the things we never had, so that’s why I work so much.”
- “We have to play by the world’s rules, or we’ll never be able to succeed.”
- “It’s best not to go against people and offend them with the truth, for we may need them tomorrow.”
- “I can handle getting involved in this, since I’m aware of the dangers and can control my involvement. I can stop whenever I want.”
The counsel of the wise, registered in Scripture, leads us to the certainty of what is right. We will act knowing what pleases God and with full knowledge of his will.
And we will not only guide our own acts by divine wisdom, but will be able to answer and guide others.
In this way, we will find our life’s mission, that of helping others live with God, by God and for God.
The knowledge that brings me certainty and that applies to all, in order to guide us in your ways, O Lord, is your gift to us, precious in our sight.
Hold this thought: To hear God’s wisdom is our task, / To help our neighbors when they ask.