How would you define the word “wisdom”? What is it, and why is it so important to us? One of the most common things people compare wisdom to is knowledge. Even when I look up the synonyms of wisdom, the most common words found are intelligence, understanding, insight and perception. However, as much as it seems accurate, wisdom is way deeper and far more important than all of those. In this article, we will delve into the meaning and importance of wisdom and discover how to become wiser ourselves, through several verses from the book of wisdom itself, the Bible.

What is wisdom?

So, what is wisdom exactly? And how is it any different to knowledge?

To us, human beings with such limited understanding, the word wisdom appeals to us as knowledge. However, the Hebrew word for wisdom,  “CHOKMAH” (חָכְמָה)  means way more than the mere knowledge that we would think of it as. This word refers not only to mental knowledge but also action or applied knowledge. As Charles Spurgeon would say, “Wisdom is the right use of knowledge. To know is not to be wise. Many men know a great deal, and are all the greater fools for it. There is no fool so great a fool as a knowing fool. But to know how to use knowledge is to have wisdom.”

Let’s look at several verses from the book full of wisdom itself – most of which are from Proverbs, a book that speaks of wisdom in great depth.

  1. The wise can always be wiser.

“Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser;

teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,

  and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.”

  • Proverbs 9:9-10

One principle that we should keep is that becoming wise isn’t just a point in your life that you reach, and then stop. The wise can always be wiser, no matter how wise this person is. Becoming wiser takes more – it’s a life-long process. The fact that King Solomon, one of the wisest Kings of all time, still made plenty of mistakes and committed many sins despite his great wisdom, proves that the wise still have plenty of things to learn through the fear of the Lord

To become wise means that we have to learn to fear God. To fear the Lord means giving your undivided attention to God and always directing your heart towards God; to be more Christ-centered. May we pray the same prayer in Psalm 86 – to fear God more and grow in wisdom. 

  1. Living a wise life.

“Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”

  • Ephesians 5:5-7

Through this verse, Paul urges us to be very careful in the way we live. We must ensure that the ways of our life are not unwise, but wise. Paul emphasises how the days we are living in right now are evil, making it harder for us to ignore the world’s evilness and live in the way that God wants us to. We have to be careful that our lives are not wasted on unwise actions. Even though living wise is undoubtedly hard, we need to ask God daily to help us make wise decisions throughout the day. 

  1. Taking advice.

“Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.”

  • Proverbs 13:10

Let’s be honest. Taking advice is something that everyone struggles with. Whether it be advice from parents, friends or anyone else, our pride seems to kick in and make it extremely hard to accept advice. However, Proverbs warns us that pride will certainly not get us anywhere. It will instead stir up conflict and strife in our lives. Something that should always be kept in mind is how wise people become wiser by listening to others’ advice. So, how do we become wise? To gain wisdom, we must humble our hearts and listen to the people God put in our lives to correct and rebuke us.

  1. Influence of those around you.

“Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.”

  • Proverbs 3:20

Another very important thing is the people you decide to hang around with. This is something that many of us don’t realize impacts us. However, the people you hang around with will surely impact you – from the way you act to your whole lifestyle. Proverbs tells us to walk with the wise and not fools. Each friendship we start is something that should be thought through thoroughly, to ensure that we are not being around people who may impact us for the worse.

  1. Prayer.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”

  • James 1:5

Finally, wisdom is something that the world cannot give: it’s something that only can be received from God 

 through true prayer and willingness of heart. When we examine our prayers, how often do we ask for worldly things? For money? Fame? Relationships? The list can go on and on. We must remember to pray for the things that the world cannot offer – that includes wisdom.

Let us learn together, whole-heartedly, not to live this life as unwise, but wise, and learn to take advice through true and humble prayer.

Erin Kurnia (14) is one of the writers for RE Generation-Z. She hopes that by God’s grace, she can write to spread the Truth and happiness to others, that they too may be children of God living in the light. You will find that she really enjoys playing piano, baking, sewing and designing.

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