Please enjoy this Bible study by Charlotte Millican. We are looking at Proverbs Chapter 1 today.
THE BEGINNING OF WISDOM
“Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.” – Immanuel Kant
Proverbs Chapter 1
The Book Proverbs (The Proverbs of Solomon):
Author: King Solomon (King David’s son)
Date of Writing: Solomon's proverbs were penned around 900 B.C. During his reign as king, the nation of Israel reached its pinnacle spiritually, politically, culturally, and economically. As Israel's reputation soared, so did King Solomon's. Foreign dignitaries from the far reaches of the known world traveled great distances to hear the wise monarch speak (1 Kings 4:34).
Purpose of Writing: The Book of Proverbs teaches us what wisdom is, how to obtain it, and what to run away from. To give you brief background into Proverbs, King Solomon wrote the book of Proverbs. According to the Bible, King Solomon, King David’s son, was the wisest of all men.
Proverbs is not merely an anthology but a "collection of collections" relating to a pattern of life which lasted for more than a millennium. It is an example of the Biblical wisdom tradition, and raises questions of values, moral behavior, the meaning of human life, and right conduct. The repeated theme is that "the fear of God (meaning submission to the will of God) is the beginning of wisdom". Wisdom is praised for her role in creation; God acquired her before all else, and through her he gave order to chaos; and since humans have life and prosperity by conforming to the order of creation, seeking wisdom is the essence and goal of the religious life.
Knowledge is nothing more than an accumulation of raw facts, but wisdom is the ability to see people, events, and situations as God sees them. In the Book of Proverbs, Solomon reveals the mind of God in matters high and lofty and in common, ordinary, everyday situations, too. It appears that no topic escaped King Solomon's attention. Matters pertaining to personal conduct, sexual relations, business, wealth, charity, ambition, discipline, debt, child-rearing, character, alcohol, politics, revenge, and godliness are among the many topics covered in this rich collection of wise sayings.
Key Verse: "Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance." Proverbs 1:5
Read Chapter 1 and get out your highlighters, colored pencils, pens, etc. Beginning to read this chapter and ask yourself these questions and highlight and make notes accordingly (you can highlight the scripture or underline it in more than one color if need be). There are no wrong highlightings. This is how the Scriptures speak to you. Then finish the bible study. I will put my chapter 1 highlighting study from my Bible at the end of this bible study.
Is this Scripture about: (See Highlight System Blog - Click Below )
· God’s love for me; my relationship with him, or who He is?
· Who Jesus is or what He did for you?
· How the Holy Spirit helps me?
· What the Holy Spirit Speaks to me (what I feel I need to apply to life)?
· Something important that is just worth highlighting…something I like?
· Sin and what I should stay away from/not do?
· Who I am in Christ (Identity)?
· What God has promised me?
· How I can serve others?
· What God has commanded us to DO?
· Is it a common/repeated word throughout the chapter or book?
The Beginning of Knowledge:
The Proverbs was written by King Solomon, son of David
WISDOM: Wisdom is defined as the equality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment. The Hebrew’s understanding is the ability to USE knowledge RIGHTLY.
Wisdom and knowledge are two different things. Knowledge can be obtained and get you a good job and you “know things” but wisdom gets you through life. It is based on experience. I love this quote by Immanuel Kant “Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.” How many times have you asked yourself, “If I knew THEN what I know NOW?”? This is truth. That is what wisdom is. We have learned from experience and have gained the ability to use knowledge RIGHTLY.
INSTRUCTION: Detailed information telling how something should be done, operated, or assembled. The Hebrew word is translated “chasten” which means discipline. God wants us to use His instruction and learn with discipline, learn with INTENT. I love this word…INTENT. When we learn with INTENT we are learning on purpose; determined to learn, eager to learn. We are doing it for us and not because we have to.
INSIGHT: The capacity to gain an accurate and deep intuitive understanding of a person or thing.
I may “know” that E=mc2 (“knowledge”) but do I understand the equation? God doesn’t just want us to know the words in the Bible, he wants us to understanding fully His passion, His love, His instruction, His commandments.
Taking one’s knowledge and applying it.
This is what this purpose of Proverbs is. God wants us to have wisdom; to understand right living; to gain understanding of His Word and how to live through this life abiding my His commandments.
To receive instruction in…..righteousness, justice, and equity. We are supposed to receive His wisdom and instruction so perfectly (the mentioned ways are perfect…covering all aspects of godliness) as to excel in wisdom and understanding.
RIGHTEOUSNESS: Understanding right and DOING it (obedience). Romans 7:14-16 says, “I can anticipate the response that is coming: “I know that all God’s commands are spiritual, but I’m not. Isn’t this also your experience?” Yes. I’m full of myself—after all, I’ve spent a long time in sin’s prison. What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise. So if I can’t be trusted to figure out what is best for myself and then do it, it becomes obvious that God’s command is necessary.” (The Message)
JUSTICE: Measured decisions/discerning right from worng. We are to pass a right sentence upon human actions, whether our own or another’s. In other words, I am not saying walk around being all “judgy”, but rather understanding what is right and what is wrong and do not make light of wrong actions. Do not try to justify wrong actions in order to please people or not offend people. We cannot make light of God’s commandments.
EQUITY: Fairness, rightness, uprightness, or sincerity in both justice and judgment.
PRUDENCE TO THE SIMPLE: Prudence is defined as careful, good judgment that allows someone to avoid danger or risks. The “simple” man used here is one that is easily led to good or evil. God is commanding us to help those who are easily swayed into evil a way out. Be careful not to lead them down a destructive path.
KNOWLEDGE: Knowledge primarily means information of any kind; but in Proverbs the knowledge that is advocated is beneficial, especially as it pertains to the desirable relationship that a Christian has with the Creator and with his fellow-humans. This book will teach him the knowledge of things moral, civil, and religious.
DISCRETION: Thinking ahead and planning; the right to choose what should be done in a particular situation; the quality of being careful about what you do and say so that people will not be embarrassed or offended; the quality of being discreet. Discretion teaches us to think and act right; how to behave and conduct himself wisely and discreetly before others and furnishing us with rules for future life, and be able to handle whatever situations we later have.
The verse mentions that we should give knowledge and discretion to the youth. WOW, what a command. It seems like we have let this commandment die. But commandments don’t die. Commandment is an absolute law; however, we are not following this one. We have let our youth have a mind of their own without giving them knowledge or discretion. This is why our youth make so many TERRIBLE decisions and have no filter between their brains and their mouths. They bully one another and shame each other. They HATE and they grow up to teach their kids hate. They have no respect for others. They have no moral boundaries. It is not just television’s fault or the radio’s fault. We have to STOP blaming the media and government. It starts with us, as parents, as spiritual leaders. Stop letting your kids make their own decisions now without giving them knowledge and teaching discretion.
We must hear the Word and increase our learning with INTENT.
“The fear of the Lord is the BEGINNING of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
If wisdom does not start with the Creator, then wisdom is found in something created. Wisdom then potentially changes depending on the person or situation. Wisdom will always rise above human manipulation and will stand in any situation. Fear is to recognize God IS God and we ARE NOT. Wisdom begins with NEED and we NEED God.
This passage of Scripture is talking about sin and the sinners. It is warning us not to forget God’s instruction and wisdom (referred to as mother). We need to use our knowledge and discretion when we follow people (family and/or friends). Sinners are good at sinning and do not think twice about your lifestyle. We have to use what we have learned from God and the principals here in the Book of Proverbs to make sure we are making right choices and decisions.
Wisdom is calling to us. God put a desire for knowledge and wisdom in our beings. But we can turn away from knowing wisdom and just stick to knowledge. That is what causes problems with believing in God. We have forgotten wisdom and turned to knowledge and the enemy had used knowledge to make us doubt the very existence of God. But wisdom cries out to us. “How long, O simple ones (ones easily distracted and enticed by the world), will you love being simple (without wisdom of God)?”
This verse is very important. If we listen to God and obey, He in return will pour His spirit out on us and make His words known to us. But if we refuse His words, He will mock us and turn away. We must listen and learn from Him. He is our Creator. He is our Father. He knows what is best for us.
There is an undeniable practicality found in this book, for sound and sensible answers to all manner of complex difficulties are found within its thirty-one chapters. Certainly, Proverbs is the greatest "how-to" book ever written, and those who have the good sense to take Solomon's lessons to heart will quickly discover godliness, prosperity, and contentment are theirs for the asking.
The recurring promise of the Book of Proverbs is that those who choose wisdom and follow God will be blessed in numerous ways: with long life (9:11); prosperity (2:20-22); joy (3:13-18); and the goodness of God (12:21). Those who reject Him, on the other hand, suffer shame and death (3:35; 10:21). To reject God is to choose folly over wisdom and is to separate ourselves from God, His Word, His wisdom and His blessings.
We begin Chapter 2 next week. Go ahead and read it and highlight accordingly. Write down some questions if you have any or email me some questions and I will address them in the next Bible Study.
I look forward to studying Proverbs with you. Thank you for reading and studying with me.