“Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding” (Proverbs 4.7). This verse teaches that wisdom knows the best way to do the best things in this life. This is why only a Christian can truly get wisdom. He alone knows that the best and highest purpose of man is salvation and the reflection of His Creator's character to the world at large.
Wisdom is found by Christians who experience one-time saving repentance and on-going sanctifying repentance. They come to Christ for forgiveness. They beg for revival and constraint by the Holy Spirit. The world looks at this as being foolish because they've never experienced what we experience on a daily basis.
Job 28.28 states, “Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to depart from evil is understanding.” The fear of the Lord is wisdom. Both are deemed the principal thing in life. Once we fear the Lord and depart from evil, we have what we need in life to know the best way of doing the best things.
Mary has chose wisdom when she sat at the feet of Jesus (Luke 10). It wouldn’t be taken from her. Paul wrote, “What things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ” (Philippians 3.7-8). So, the wise sit at the feet of Jesus and count all things loss for Him. Wisdom is knowing the best way to do the best things in life. The best things await the receptive heart in the Word of God.
Three simple facts ought to motivate our pursuit of biblical wisdom:
1. Wisdom is there for the taking. God has made it so that any of His children can have her. There are things you can’t do and even things that you’d like to do but cannot due to godly priorities that take up your time. These priorities are worth all of our time and energy. They are eternal in value. They are truly satisfying.
2. Wisdom alone will ultimately bring delight into our lives. People who forsake God forsake wisdom. They have forsaken the fountain of living waters and have stumbled about with broken pottery fragments that hold muddy, murky water at best (see Jeremiah 2.13). Happiness without wisdom is impossible. Those who have wisdom experience greater delight in times of prosperity and incomprehensible comfort in times of adversity. Nothing on earth can give us this delight. The wise are unknown yet well known; dying and yet live; chastened but not killed; sorrowful yet rejoicing; poor yet enriching others; having nothing but possessing all things (2 Corinthians 6.9-10).
3. Wisdom gives life. Doing your duty for God does you little good for eternity. A lot of people do good and nobel things in the world. Many of these are dead in sin. Wisdom gives life to those that have it (Ecclesiastes 7.12). “To be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace ...if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body you will live (Romans 8.6, 13).”
We work hard for people and other worthy pursuits. God expects this. But wisdom must be the principal thing for which we labor. Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding (see Proverbs 4.5, 7). Don't forsake wisdom; don't neglect it; don't forget it.
Warren Wiersbe writes...
The father tells his sons to treat wisdom the way they would treat their mother, sister, or wife: love her, honor her, embrace her, exalt her! The bumper sticker that asks, “Have you hugged your children today?” ought to be balanced with, “Have you hugged wisdom today?” In Proverbs, Wisdom is personified as a beautiful woman who invites us to her lavish banquet, while Folly is the adulteress or prostitute who tempts us to poverty and death. The one you love is the one who will control your life. Embrace Wisdom and you will have security (Proverbs 4.6), honor (4.8), and beauty (4.9).