Have you ever known anyone who claimed to be wise but acted foolishly? True wisdom can be measured by the depths of a person’s character. Just as you can identify a tree by the type of fruit it produces, you can evaluate your wisdom by the way you act.
Think about this. We have so many supposed geniuses that are so “intelligent”, yet they deny the existence of God and believe the earth just formed out of nothing… Look at Romans 1:19-25 where it talks about them "professing to be wise but they became fools for rejecting God."
1 Corinthians 1:20 says man’s wisdom is foolishness to God. Chapter 2 says God’s wisdom is foolishness to man. Man’s wisdom comes from reason, while God’s wisdom come from revelation.
Proverbs 9:10 says “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; and knowledge of the holy is understanding”
James tells us in this passage that there are two sources of wisdom, and we need to be discerning as to where our wisdom comes from.
One type of wisdom comes from God, is pleasing to Him, and good for our lives. And we’ll talk about that second. But the first type of wisdom he speaks of here is worldly wisdom. It does not come from God but instead from the devil. It is not good for our lives and can cause a lot of damage if we listen to it.
(Read James 3:13-16)
WORLDLY WISDOM (vs 13-16)
- Is from the devil, it comes from hell
- It seems right to men and women (Proverbs 14:12 “There is a way which seems right to a person, but it’s end is the way of death”
- It is a common thing for people to think they know everything, Satan loves to get people to question God’s word and rely on their own thinking… Genesis 3 (Did God really say don’t eat from the tree? You won’t die, your eyes will be opened and you’ll have knowledge)
- Worldly wisdom views life from a limited perspective. It looks at the immediate impact—what is best for self-advancement and self-pleasure now. This is dangerous and motivated by self-centered ambition.
- A wisdom of the world measures everything by how it affects you.
- “What’s best for me?” is the world’s wisdom
-The world tells us to climb the ladder, achieve your dreams, assert yourselves, promote yourselves, advance yourself, it is all about you… Meanwhile, Jesus tells us to DENY OURSELVES, PUT OTHERS ABOVE OURSELVES, SERVE OTHERS
- Self-centered ambition is the heart of worldly wisdom and the Bible tells us it is demonic and from Satan
- Vs 16 says where selfish ambition and jealousy are, there is disorder and every evil thing
(Read James 3:17-18
GODLY WISDOM (vs 17-18)
- Godly wisdom comes from heaven
- Godly wisdom produces humility
- For followers of Christ our goal is to bring God glory (which means place Him above every other thing in our lives and on this earth),
-the way we do that is by following Him, and making His name known to everyone (sharing about who He is and why we need Him)
- From this passage we learned that the way we bring glory to Him is by seeking Godly wisdom and not worldly wisdom… so how do we do that?
- You don’t get this wisdom from intellectual efforts or practical experience as much as you get it from being with God. A Godly wisdom sees things from an eternal perspective that can only come from God.
- Example: we love sports, but does that game really matter in the grand scheme of things. Our goal if we are player or coach should be to make the name of Jesus known to everyone.
1. The first step is receiving Christ as our savior: Jesus Christ is our wisdom- Colossians 2:3 Jesus Christ “In whom all treasures and knowledge are hidden”.
We will not see the need in Godly wisdom if we have not trusted Christ to save us from the wrath to come. That wrath is hell, created for the devil and his demons, but people will go there bc they reject God and say they don’t need Him.
2. The Word of God is also our wisdom- Deut. 4:5-6 “behold I have taught you statutes and judgements…Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations”
2 Tim 3:15 says the scriptures are able to make us wise unto salvation.
3. We find wisdom in Prayer- James 1:5 says we find wisdom through believing prayer. “If any of you lack wisdom let him ask of God.”
Proverbs 2:1-8 speaks about this as well, about us crying out and asking God for His wisdom.
Worldly wisdom says, I got this, I’m gonna do me, this seems best for me, it is all self-centered.
Godly wisdom says, let me search the scriptures, God I need your help, I want to do what pleases you, please change my mind and perspective if I am seeing this wrong.