by Ken Cooper
This is the last installation of our e-mail update series on walking with Jesus. We’ve looked at walking in newness of life, walking by faith, and walking in love. Today we are going to see what it means to Walk in Wisdom. In Colossians 4:5 we read Paul’s advice, “Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time.” (ASV). Ok, so what does it mean to walk in wisdom? The world values wisdom but it doesn’t really understand what wisdom is. Here are a couple of dictionary definitions. Wisdom is “the body of knowledge and experience that develops within specified society or period”. A search for a definition of the word “wise” yielded this gem, “having or showing experience, knowledge, and good judgement.” The problems with these definitions are: 1. The body of knowledge and experience that develop within a specified society or period aren’t necessarily good. And, 2. How does one define good judgement? By these definitions cannibalism would be wise by the standards of some societies. God chose to reveal Himself to us in the Bible because we need a higher authority than ourselves when we need answers for living life. We need our creator to define wisdom for us since our own definition of wisdom is more than a little sketchy. Wisdom is a major theme in the scriptures, especially in the Old Testament book of Proverbs. “Wise” is used 61 times and “wisdom” 51 times in the 31 chapters of the book. In the Proverbs we see how wisdom works and the blessings it brings to our lives.
In Jesus’ parable of the wise and foolish builders in Matthew 7, He defines wisdom in verse 24, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (NIV). The difference between the wise man and the foolish man is that the foolish man heard Jesus’ words but didn’t put them into practice. Jesus defines wisdom as listening to the Word of God and doing what it says. Another way of saying it is that wisdom is learning what is right and doing it. That means if we are wise, we are going to learn and do God’s will. And God’s will is revealed in the Bible. Hey, isn’t that a picture of the good judgement the dictionary refers to? When you think about it, it doesn’t make much sense to not do what is right. This is one of the reasons we put so much emphasis on reading and studying the Bible. This is why we encourage you to read and learn to understand at least a few verses in your Bible every day. One of the most important things a Christian can do is to get to know the Bible intimately and thoroughly. Again, spend time with it every day– we cannot over-emphasize its importance. It contains the wisdom of God which is infinitely wiser than the wisdom of the world. Walking in wisdom will help you become the person God created you to be.
All of these things we have discussed over the past four weeks are not separate disciplines of the faith. Walking in newness of life, walking by faith, walking in love and walking in wisdom are all descriptions of what happens when we walk in the footsteps of Jesus. So, after all this, are you walking the walk?