James 3:13 “Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom.”
“Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all
your getting, get understanding.” - Prov 4:7
HOW DO WE KNOW WHETHER OR NOT WE HAVE TRUE WISDOM
• Wisdom is known by DEEDS rather than words. - James 3:13
is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom.
14 But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth.
wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic.
16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.
17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle,
willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.
18 Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.
A WARNING TO TEACHERS:
“Among the Jews, Sophos (“wise”) was a technical term for the teacher, the scribe, the Rabbi”(Theological Dictionary of the New Testament. 7:505) • The Jewish disciples wanted to be teachers. - James 3:1 • James is still dealing
with the tongue - but goes beyond the sins of the tongue to the source of those sins.
WHAT QUALIFICATIONS SHOULD ONE MEET TO BE A TEACHER?
• Wisdom in handling the scriptures would certainly be an important
quality - 2 Tim 2:15; 2 Pet. 3:16-18
• Wisdom in handling difficult situations would be important - Jude 1:22,23; James 1:5
• Wisdom is necessary in promoting unity & harmony - Jam 3:13-18
Thayer Definition: G4678 – σοφία - sophia
1) wisdom, broad and full of intelligence; used of the knowledge of very diverse matters -
1a) . . . acquired by acuteness and experience,
. . .
1a5) skill in the management of affairs -
1a6) devout and proper prudence . . .
1a7) the knowledge and practice of the requisites for godly and upright living
WISDOM NOT ONLY PERTAINS
TO THAT WHICH IS SPOKEN - BUT TO THAT WHICH IS DONE:
- "Good behavior/conversation/conduct” - (Eph 5:15-17; 1 Tim 4:12-16, James 3:13)
- Works - (Mt 7:24; Tit 2:14 - in contrast cf. Mat. 6:1-18; 23:2-5; Tit 1:16)
- Meekness - the opposite of arrogance - (Mat 20:25-28; Gal. 6:1; 1 Tim 6:11)
EVIDENCE OF UNGODLY WISDOM:
- James 3:14 • “Bitter envying” - “an envious
and contentious rivalry, jealousy” - (Thayer. 271)
• 1 Cor 3:3 - For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?
• Galatians 5:20 - . . . contentions,
jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies,
• Rom. 13:13 - Let us walk properly . . . not in strife and envy. .
• “Self seeking”
- “faction”, “strife
- “selfish ambition” - “denotes ambition, self-seeking, rivalry, self-will being an underlying idea in the word; hence it denotes party-making” (Vine. 2:68). •
One who is interested in promoting a party or hobby • One who is interested in climbing the preacher ladder
• Selfishness or self-promoting
James 3:14 • “If there is bitterness in the heart,
let there be no boasting of your goodness. That would be to lie against the truth.” - [Johnson's Notes on the New Testament]. • This is nothing to glory about. To boast (lit., “exult,”katakauchasthe)in such attitudes is to deny, or “lie
against,” the truth. - [The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures by Dallas Seminary Faculty].
WISDOM IS NOT ENVIOUS OR SELFISH:
Philippians 2:1-4 1
1 Therefore if there
is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy,
2 fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
3 Let nothing be done
through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.
4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Phili 2:5-8
OF UNGODLY WISDOM - EARTHLY
• Origin: “Earthly” - “existing upon the earth, earthly, terrestrial... the wisdom of man, liable to error and misleading” - (Thayer. 236-7). - cf.
• Wisdom that is according to the world's standards cannot be applied to Spiritual things and relationships
• Such use of earthly wisdom is foolishness to God - cf. - 1 Cor 1:20-24,25.26; 2 Cor. 4:4; 1 John 2:15
OF UNGODLY WISDOM -SENSUAL
• Appeal: “Sensual” - “a. having the nature and characteristics of the . . . principle of animal life, which men have in common with the brutes. b. governed by the. . . the sensuous nature
with its subjection to appetite and passion” (Thayer. 677-8). - cf. Jude 17-19
• Appealing to the senses, the emotions, the passions
• The reasoning used for perversions in the worship and work of the church –
• When men follow such wisdom - carnality is increased and spirituality is decreased!
SOURCE OF UNGODLY WISDOM - DEVILISH
• Nature: “devilish” - “resembling or proceeding
from an evilspirit, demon-like" (Thayer. 124) - cf. John 8:44
• Does not require a denial of God and spiritual things, just a promotion of worldly, carnal and sensual things and aspirations above the spiritual.
• The devil
did not seek to make Eve an atheist, he just wanted God to be demoted in her mind (Gen 3)
• This kind of wisdom thrives upon pride -Proverbs 3:7
RESULTS OF UNGODLY WISDOM
- “instability..., denotes a state of disorder, disturbance, confusion, tumult ... revolution or anarchy” (Vine. 1:227)
• Every evil work - worthless, vile, wicked, base • 1 Cor. 3:3 — for you are still carnal. For
where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?
WISDOM FROM ABOVE - GOD IS ITS SOURCE AND IS ATTAINED FROM STUDY OF THE WORD OF GOD
• God is it's
source and is attained from:
• God - 1 Kings 4:29
• A respect for God - Ps 111:10 • Bible Study - Ps 119:97,98
• Obedience to God's will - Ps 107:43 • Maturity - Heb 5:14
There are Two sources of wisdom - just as there are two sources of Authority - Mat 21:23-27
THE NATURE OF HEAVENLY WISDOM
• Pure - "pure from defilement, not contaminated” (Vine.
3:231); cf. Mat 5:8; 1 John 3:3; Gal 1:8-9
• Peaceable - cf. Matthew 5:9
• Gentle - “equitable, fair, moderate, forbearing, . . . it expresses that considerateness that looks humanely
and reasonably at the facts of a case” (Vine. 2:144-5).; cf. Phil 4:5
• Willing to yield - Does not yield faith - considers the evidence & yields to the truth not opinions
“kindness or good will towards the miserable and afflicted, joined with a desire to relieve them” - cf. Mat 5:7
• Good fruits - cf. Galatians 5:22-24 • Without partiality - cf. James 2:1
Without hypocrisy - genuine, sincere
THE RESULT OF HEAVENLY WISDOM
• The fruit of righteousness is sown - Ephesians 2:10
• In peace - Romans 12:18
them that make peace - cf. Matthew 5:9; Romans 5:1; 1:16-17; Ephesians 4:1-3; Philippians 4:
WISDOM - THE FRUIT
Wisdom Is Proven By Its Fruit - Do We Exhibit it?
Isaiah 11:2–9 -
2 The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him,
The Spirit of wisdom and understanding,
The Spirit of counsel and might,
The Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.
3 His delight is in
the fear of the Lord,
And He shall not judge by the sight of His eyes,
Nor decide by the hearing of His ears;
4 But with righteousness He shall judge the poor,
And decide with equity for the meek of the
He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth,
And with the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked.
5 Righteousness shall be the belt of His loins,
And faithfulness the belt of His waist.
6“The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, The leopard shall lie down with the young goat, The calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little child shall lead them.
7 The cow and the bear shall graze; Their young
ones shall lie down together; And the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
8 The nursing child shall play by the cobra’s hole, And the weaned child shall put his hand in the viper’s den.
9 They shall not hurt nor destroy
in all My holy mountain,
For the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord As the waters cover the sea.
If you wish to see the slide-show version of this message please see the following link: