I need wisdom. I need understanding. Wisdom and understanding is a God-given perception. God’s goal for me is to be wise and to have understanding. God is good and shows me the way. Now that is some good news.
In God’s love I find wisdom. Jesus wants me to know and grow.
With it, I can see the nature and meaning of things, resulting in sound judgment and decision-making. In particular, it gives me the ability to discern spiritual truth and to apply it to human disposition and conduct.
Philip ran up and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet, and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” And he said, “Well, how could I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. | Acts 8:30–31 (NASB)
Biblical wisdom refers to practical skills associated with understanding and living a successful life. Jesus defines success to me as love! Wisdom is often associated with trust in and fear of God (Deut 4:6; Prov 1:7).
Understanding God’s word. The New Testament presents Jesus as a teacher — a role often associated with the wise in the ancient world. This connection is apparent in Jesus’ use of parables to instruct — teaching methods also used by sages (see Prov 1:2–7).
When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue; and the many listeners were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get these things, and what is this wisdom given to Him, and such miracles as these performed by His hands? | Mark 6:2
There is far more to Jesus’ teaching than simply the adoption of wisdom forms — which prophets in Old Testament times also used to convey their message. The content of Jesus’ teaching is not constrained to wisdom by His use of parables; it is also prophetic, miraculous and priestly. Jesus wants me to “get it”.
- John 12:16 — These things His disciples did not understand at the first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written of Him, and that they had done these things to Him.
- Luke 24:45 — Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.
- Matthew 24:15 — “Therefore when you see the abomination of desolation which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand).
- Luke 24:27 — Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.
- Acts 8:30–31 — Philip ran up and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet, and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” And he said, “Well, how could I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.