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The Christian and Wisdom
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  • The Christian and Wisdom

    I am often surprised by fellow believers who tell me that philosophy has no place in the Christian faith. Now, I am not a professional philosopher, but everybody practices a certain amount of philosophy in their own right. It is almost like these fellow believers are saying to stop thinking or questioning because you are now a Christian. That can not be further from the truth this morning.
    Let’s define the terms Christian and Philosophy. The Biblical definition of Christian:
    Christian - One who worships Jesus of Nazareth as the Messiah and as the Son of the God of Israel. A follower of Jesus the Messiah (Christ).
    Jesus is the Messiah, Jesus is the Son of God. As Christians, we are to worship and follow Jesus above all else.
    The word “Christian” only appears three times in the New testament. The first appearance of the word “Christian” occurs in Acts 11:26 and it is used to describe Jews who became followers of “The Way,” meaning Jesus Christ.
    Christians did not come up with the word “Christian.” The word Christian was used in a negative way to describe and separate those who converted. Kind of like someone saying “Great, here come those Christians!” It was used as a way to separate Christ’s followers from everyone else. I like it. What man meant for evil, God used for good!
    The truth is that as believers, we are a separate nation unto the LORD, Amen? I say that because I want you to be okay with getting shot-down, dismissed, and attacked for being a Christian. Is it right? No. Is it going to happen? Yes! Jesus Christ kind of promised us it will happen. One of those promises we may not like, but a promise He made none the less.
    Lets look at the Biblical definition of Philosophy.
    Philosophy - The love of wisdom.
    The word “wisdom” appears over 200 times in the Bible. What or who’s wisdom do we love and seek?

    Human Wisdom

    Colossians 2:8 NLT
    8 Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ.
    Nowhere in scripture does God imply that Christians are to leave our brains at the door. As a matter of fact, we are called to question and to seek wisdom, the wisdom of God. In both Luke and Acts, we are repeatedly called to “reason with” believers and non-believers alike.
    Paul is pointing out that when we give our minds over to what “pop culture” or “new age” ideas and philosophies dictate, we are allowing our minds and maybe our hearts to be captured by this world. We leave the door open to the prince of the power of the air, the enemy.
    Let’s make a distinction here between knowledge and wisdom.
    Knowledge - becoming familiar with something primarily through experience and relationship.
    We have to ask ourselves “Who or what is my primary experience and primary relationship going to be with?” “This world or Jesus?” I am not saying to stop growing in your job or career, that would be foolish, we are to do all things unto the Glory of God.
    What I am saying is that there are those who will spend hours on social media or binge watch television, or a host of other things, yet make excuses for not spending time in the Bible, Church, or fellowship. What knowledge are we gaining and where is it coming from? What are we putting into our minds? What or who are we spending our time with?
    We have the indwelling of Holy Spirit through Jesus. Are we allowing the knowledge and philosophies of this world or even other people to quelch the Spirit in us? I pray not.
    Lets talk about wisdom for a moment.
    Wisdom - practical skills associated with understanding and the application of knowledge.
    Knowledge, when applied, becomes wisdom. Wisdom is the direction our mind will go with knowledge. Wisdom is the outward expression of knowledge. How are we using our knowledge of God, for what purpose? There is such a thing as foolish wisdom. The truth is, the answer depends on what or who we have chosen to have our primary relationship with.
    In the Acts of the Apostles, when Paul and Silas were forced out of Thessalonica, they ended up in a city called Berea. Here is what Paul said about those in Berea.
    Acts 17:11 KJV 1900
    11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
    More noble. The Bereans loved hearing the Word of God, and reading the Word of God, but they did not take anything at face value. it did not matter who was teaching it, where they heard it, or what it was. The Bereans went to scripture to make sure that what was being taught aligned with the Word of God. They were seeking after the knowledge of God. They were seeking the wisdom of God.
    The Apostle Paul loved being questioned and challenged! He praised them for this. Don’t be afraid to ask the tough questions! Everybody has those questions, let’s not pretend they do not exist. When our faith is shaken, and we seek His wisdom through the Word, prayer, and fellowship, our faith will be renewed and strengthened! Brothers and sisters, we are all seeking after the knowledge and Wisdom of God together.
    With the assault of endless news cycles, social media, and twisted world philosophies, we must seek after His knowledge and His ways. When we do, we realize and we live out the Wisdom of God in our own lives.

    God’s Wisdom

    What is the Wisdom of God?
    The wisdom of God is God fully exercising His infinite knowledge. Yet, God delights in sharing His wisdom with you and me, His finite creation.
    The LORD, your God, is sharing His wisdom through His Living Word, Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit, and through fellow believers with you and me. Through those relationship, He will share as much wisdom with us as we are willing to receive!
    Throughout scripture, we are told where that wisdom begins and ends, with the LORD.
    Job 28:28 NLT
    28 And this is what he says to all humanity: ‘The fear of the Lord is true wisdom; to forsake evil is real understanding.’ ”
    That word fear in the Hebrew is yir-ah. When we are talking about our relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the word yir-ah means “great reverence, piety, respect, and marvel.”
    When we experience God, when we have those intimate encounters with Jesus Christ, we see evil and sin for what they are. In those moments, we choose to forsake what is wrong, repenting, turning away from sin, or we choose to forsake what is right, and turn away from the cross. We choose the wisdom of God, or we choose the wisdom of this world.
    God did not leave us cold and alone in the darkness. He is not a far removed God or an uncaring God. He sent and He gave His son.
    1 Corinthians 1:30 NLT
    30 God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; he made us pure and holy, and he freed us from sin.
    God chose to UNITE you and me this morning with Jesus Christ. Out of His nature, His love, and His salvation, He chose you to be in Christ.
    Christ is the wisdom of God, given to this world, so that we may know the way, the truth, and the life.
    Christ is the Revelation of God. God wants us to see exactly who He is, what He is like, and how He expects us to live.
    The Apostle Paul is telling us that we need to get past our feelings, our pride, our egos, unforgiveness, excuses, self-righteousness, our bickering, and focus on the Wisdom of God who is Jesus the Messiah. If we truly know Jesus Christ, we know the Wisdom of God.

    Living Out God’s Wisdom

    What does God’s Wisdom look like as it is lived out by the believer?
    Worship Team to Stage
    James 3:17 NLT
    17 But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere.
    Be pure in heart.
    Be the Peacemaker
    Always be Gentle
    Admit when your wrong.
    Change those wrong Behaviors
    Show True Compassion for others.
    Live Out the Fruit of The Spirit
    Talking about the Word of God shows knowledge, anybody can do that. Living out the Word of God, reflecting Jesus in all areas of our lives, shows Wisdom. That is what His people need to be doing, that is our witness unto Jesus Christ.
    Alter Call/Time of Prayer
      • Colossians 2:8NKJV

      • Acts 17:11NLT

      • Job 28:28NLT

      • 1 Corinthians 1:30NLT

      • James 3:17NKJV

      • Romans 10.9NLT

      • Romans 10.10NLT

      • Romans 10.13NLT

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