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So, my friend, listen closely;
don’t treat my words casually.
Why should you allow strangers to take advantage of you?
Why be exploited by those who care nothing for you?

You don’t want to end your life full of regrets,
nothing but sin and bones,
Saying, “Oh, why didn’t I do what they told me?
Why did I reject a disciplined life?
Why didn’t I listen to my mentors,
or take my teachers seriously?
My life is ruined!
I haven’t one blessed thing to show for my life!”

~King Solomon

Source: Proverbs 5:7-14 (The Message)

It is helpful to know that some people really do not care for me. In fact, they care nothing at all. They do not have my best interest at heart and are hard-hearted. I need to be wise to discern that reality. I have opened myself up to it before. It is no fun, as we all know.

God has a goal and some wisdom for me. I need to listen carefully and closely. Jesus said “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves.”

I can ignore wisdom, but it will lead me to ruin and regret. I will be exploited, taken advantage of and tossed aside. I have good news. Jesus cares. Jesus cares a lot. God is in a good mood. Jesus makes me whole and restores my soul. I don’t have to take the road to ruin.

And so, I have a choice. I need to be careful. I need to listen and act on what Jesus tells me. I need to be disciplined, which I do not like. I alone am responsible. I do not have anyone to blame but myself.

So, my friend, listen closely;
don’t treat my words casually.
Why should you allow strangers to take advantage of you?
Why be exploited by those who care nothing for you?

You don’t want to end your life full of regrets,
nothing but sin and bones,
Saying, “Oh, why didn’t I do what they told me?
Why did I reject a disciplined life?
Why didn’t I listen to my mentors,
or take my teachers seriously?
My life is ruined!
I haven’t one blessed thing to show for my life!”

~King Solomon

Source: Proverbs 5:7-14 (The Message)

Wisdom and understanding is a God-given perception of the nature and meaning of things, resulting in sound judgment and decision-making; in particular, the ability to discern spiritual truth and to apply it to human disposition and conduct.

Biblical wisdom refers to practical skills associated with understanding and living a successful life. Wisdom is often associated with trust in and fear of God.

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.

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.

  • 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.
  • Psalm 119:73  — Your hands made me and fashioned me; Give me understanding, that I may learn Your commandments.
  • Luke 24:45  — Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.
  • Nehemiah 8:8  — They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading.
  • Nehemiah 8:12  — All the people went away to eat, to drink, to send portions and to celebrate a great festival, because they understood the words which had been made known to them.
  • Psalm 119:27  — Make me understand the way of Your precepts, So I will meditate on Your wonders.
  • Psalm 119:125  — I am Your servant; give me understanding, That I may know Your testimonies.
  • 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.