Behold! Wisdom

Behold! Wisdom

Behold! Wisdom.

There are some individual words and short phrases in Scripture that need to be highlighted as they are read, words or phrases that are significant or point to something meaningful. Some phrases might be: Fear not. Here I am. Woe to you. One another. And maybe some words are: Amen. Hallelujah. Blessed. Abba. Come. The word Behold! is one of those significant words, an exclamation that is intended to get our attention. Listen, people, this is something you need to hear! Behold says to the audience, Look at this and take note! You would be wise to remember these words and think about them! Careful now, don’t be deaf to what I am about to say! Stop what you’re doing and listen up! As the Eastern Orthodox Christians say before they read the Gospel in the Liturgy… Attend! The following verse begins with Behold! So the words that follow must be important.

Behold! You desire truth in the inner parts of me, truth from the inside out. You love truth and honesty, and you want it held deep-down in my heart. You want me to know wisdom, in fact you teach me wisdom in secret, in my hidden part where no one sees but you. Teach me your truth then, Lord, in my innermost being. Behold! Listen to my plea.” (Ps. 51:6).

WISDOM: Skilled in the practical art of astute discernment in decision-making; cleverly practicing the truth in daily life situations; sensible judgment; moral discernment; deep understanding; shrewd and righteous street smarts; spiritual intelligence; profoundly insightful; the Person of Christ.

Wisdom is not superficial. Anything that is truly wise must necessarily come from deep within us. Wisdom is a gift, and comes from heart-felt devotion to God, from deep union with Jesus. God makes us wise as we depend on Him for our understanding and insight. We don’t somehow produce wisdom out of thin air, or through human effort, or natural intelligence. Wisdom is a gift provided by Wisdom-in-the-Flesh. Wisdom is gained through life experience that is centered on submission, not ambition. “To those called by God, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God. It is by Him that you exist in Christ Jesus, who for us was made wisdom from God.” (1 Cor. 1:24, 30). Wisdom is truth in action, and we all know who the Truth is. (John 14:6).

The road to wisdom is unknown by humankind, its location hidden from any living creature. Despite our grandest of efforts and depth of sincerity, wisdom is beyond our scope, outside our intellectual reach.

So if we want to be wise, what do we do, where do we go? Job’s final word to the wise in Job 28… Go to God and fear him. The prudent miner begins with the King of the mountain himself, approaching him in reverence and awe and trust. Holy fear opens the door to the mountain’s throne room and allows access to the King, his truth, his life. Once with him, we honor and adore him, we hallow his name and character, we discover that his presence has been our heart’s desire all along. His being transcends us, his presence transforms us, and we grow in wisdom as a natural, or supernatural result. We find that wisdom is indeed taking root in the fertile ground of our relationship with the King. And we become inspired, literally, to embrace virtue and character, and to participate in the holy process of creativity, all in the Spirit of our Creator himself.

When we are attentive, the King does not hesitate to reveal his crown jewel: Love. Love is wisdom’s mature fruit in due season, the currency of the kingdom. He says He is the source of love, that He is in fact Love, which is the deep truth of wisdom. Love has the last word with the King, and Love is His last word to the wise.

“If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask Him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind.” (James 1:5-6).