This broadcaster has 464 podcast archives available on-demand.
Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.
November 19, 2019 1:00 am
Some time ago there was a story in the Chicago Tribune about a man who was walking along when he decided to take a shortcut by crossing the tri-state freeway only got to the middle of the freeway. His hat blew off and so as he turned back to retrieve his hat. He was struck by the oncoming traffic and kill them instantly. And here's the last sentence in this article in the Chicago Tribune with the reader to. It is amazing how you can lose everything chasing nothing. It's amazing how you can lose everything chasing nothing. I wonder how many of us ever take time on a regular basis and ask ourselves the question what are we chasing what we chasing in life.
What is the price that we are paying for chasing what we chasing a life, King Solomon, who was the richest man in the world, the most powerful man in the world, the wisest man in the world of his time decided that he wanted to chase after a whole lot of things hoping that at least one of them will bring him satisfaction that will bring him contentment. That would bring him peace of mind that he was desperately looking for that will bring them enjoyment of life, so he changed after silence and the natural law he changed after philosophy and psychology. He chased after sensuality and pleasures. He chased after materialism and wealth that he chased after beautiful architecture gardens in the ascetics he chased after hedonism and self-indulgence. He chased after Eagle resume up living for himself. He was chasing after dead rituals of religion, but none of them none of them could bring him the piece of mine.
None of these brought him the desired contentment that he was desperate for Ecclesiastes chapter 7 and eight.
As we continue in this series of messages.
What is like down under under the sun. He found out that chasing after all of these things did not help him one bit. But then he discovered there was one thing that got close not perfect but close did not answer all of the questions of life, but it got close did not explain all of the ministries of life. But it got close. What was wisdom.
In fact, there are six words in the Hebrew language. All of them are translated into English as wisdom, but the word that is used here in Ecclesiastes chapter 7, 14 times is the Hebrew word, what is it took my means. It means to make the right choice override choices at the right times it means to have an understanding to have discernment in the difficult situations of life. It means not to be easily persuaded or deceived or are lured by falsehoods and by imitations. This is the kind of wisdom that the apostle James, the brother of the Lord Jesus Christ tells us about in his epistle that when you needed and then call upon God that he will give it to you not may give it to you or possibly give it to you but he will give it to you in abundance and Solomon, who was asked by God what do you want what you want in life and Solomon above all and everything else he denies for power he denies for wealth of the God gave him all of that in addition but he asked only for wisdom because he knew that is the secret for joy in life and yet when God gave him wisdom and gave him wealth. On top of that he tried to live part of his life under the sun drawn experience what it is like to live without God and then he end up with all these discoveries but he coming to the ultimate discovery about wisdom and he gives us in this chapter, chapter 7, at least three positive contributions that godly wisdom will give everyone of us who ask God for 31. He said wisdom will give you a world of good versus 1 to 10. Secondly he says wisdom will give you clarity of vision for your life versus 11 to 18.
And then thirdly, he says wisdom will give you power for living this life versus 19 to 29 is as wisdom will give you a world of good. And look at the first two verses of chaos.
Chapter 7 and if your receipt and review development when you're alone, you must have come to the conclusion there something wrong with your Bible. What's wrong with this guy only tells you that sorrow is better than laughter. What's wrong with it when he says death is better than not that the value.an invaluable. What's wrong with this guy is he for real. Is he so depressed that he can see straight.
Is he contradicting what he said in his other book. The book of Proverbs when he said, laughter can be a medicine that heals a broken heart. What's wrong with this picture that the day you die better than the day you live. Most of us listen to him about you, but hands down, if I'm going have a choice between a birthday party in a funeral element of the birthday party. This is the scene of the value the better the women what is he saying if you react that way when you read those words at face value. If you reacted that way you'll find it's okay, don't feel guilty about them and exploitative and the problem is the English language is not the problem was Solomon with the problem of the English language translation from Semitic languages, particularly parables send some of the songs of very very difficult extremely difficult at times. Not that the translation in your Bible is wrong as a man are going to change this translation for another translation you translation is not wrong. But the problem is with the lightning parables and those Proverbs. Most of their meaning is in the rhyming of the words and so the correct this misunderstanding that comes across from the English text. You have to start with the first half of verse one of chapter 7 when he says a man's or a person's reputation is far more valuable than the most expensive of perfume and perfume was very expensive back then, explained to the minute when he says that your reputation is your name is far more precious than the perfume that will evaporate. That is a foundational verse market in your Bible underlined it in your Bible present. How can death be better than brass. Listen carefully, because in the original language. Those two words rhyme together is what Solomon saying Solomon is not contrasting death and life. He is not contrasting birth and death. He's not even concluding that the die is better than to be born is not saying that all he is contrasting the two most significant days of anyone's life. The two most significant days in the human experience in the value born in the day you die. That's what he is comparing the two days, not the two events is that these are most significant days in any human experience. In your experience and in my the day when the birth is announced in the newspaper and the day when it's in their butchery column in the newspaper that he is what he say he saying that the life that is lived between those two significant days will determine whether that name leaves behind a lovely fragrance order foul stench. He is saying that the life that is lived between those two significant days in the life of everyone is going to determine whether you gonna leave behind a positive and uplifting example or essence of horror, whether that name that is lived between those two days is going to leave whatever is mentioned is going to bring about some thoughts of honor or this honor or think about this if you get two names mentioned, in contrast, like Eisenhower and Hitler was your reaction, saying Eisenhower's perfect nobody is. But when you think of the name you think of all kinds of positive things for smelling fragrant of a life that is lived dedicated and committed to the service of the country and the other one communicates horror or Martin Luther King when you compare that with the name Saddam Hussein. What you get one that is lived positively and try to impact life positively, and the other one horror and that's what he means. Here that's what Solomon is saying that when a person dies with a good name that name will always evoke pleasant thoughts, positive reaction, goodwill, feelings, and, and that since the day of one's death is greater than the day of one's birth. I mean, think about this when a baby is born. I'm in his or her significances mostly to the parents as a grandfather course is to the grandparents is a big day. My immediate family, but that's about it doesn't matter who the person is whenever they grow up to be. But after that person has lived a positive life after the person lived alive that is impacted the kingdom of God and the work of God in the ministry of God. After that person live the life of sacrificial giving a life of giving himself a life of honoring God. After that person lived that life. When that person dies after that wonderful life, his or her name, bring a smile on people's faces. Did you get in the same sense. He said the day of one's death is far more significant is far more important than the day of one's birth. Because of very few people heard of LSU, the royal family and some other people heard of you when you born but then when you lived your life. A lot of people have come across you bath at work in your neighborhood everywhere you go, leaving fragrance, leaving beautiful smelling fragrance in your wake, and that is why the day of death is very significant. The memory of the just said Proverbs 10, seven is blessed but the name of the wicked will rot and when Mary of Bethany poured that very expensive perfume and is probably a laborer's wages for a year.
Very expensive perfume and when she reported at the feet of Jesus and anointed his feet with that expensive perfume is what Jesus said. He said her name will be honored for all generations to come. And it is but the very man who complained about the waste and how expensive it wasn't. Shouldn't be said, but done this way regional shoulder to make some money giveaway to the port. The very man whose sold Jesus for 30 pieces of silver died in this honor, and ensuring precious in the eyes of the Lord is the death of his saints. I wanted him maniacally is because this is important.
Solomon is not telling us to be preoccupied with death.
He's not telling us to be obsessed about death is not telling us to be careless about that. He's not telling us to be unrealistic about death, but rather he is what he saying in those few verses the first 10 verses he is saying being realistic about death. He saying learn to number your days.
He is saying.
Learn to live this life with eternity in mind he's in love upon the rebuke of the constructive criticism that comes from a righteous from a godly person is an opportunity not for you to lash out against them, but that is a good medicine that will be of greater value than the flattering words of a foolish person. Don't go for the shortcuts in life.
Don't go for the shortcuts because most likely will be lost. In fact, most likely, you will lose everything.
But when things get difficult. Don't just long for the good old days, as we say, and I got add to this. You know those always longing for the good old days. Always think of the good old days are basically a combination of bad memory and good imagination. Long ago I saw a bumper sticker that really influenced my thinking.
It says I am joyful because tomorrow I might be in heaven unto that if you believe you know me well for the coming Eisenhower, I never tell you I'm fine, I'm doing great, because I could be lying. Depending with our silly firearm that I was a fine nomogram a lot. So if you asked me how are you on my standard answer as many of you know I'm rejoicing now. I love it when the nonbeliever then asked me why is it old because tomorrow I might be in heaven. Bless them what they can figure this without you killing the so glad you asked wisdom will do your world of good. Secondly, wisdom will give you clarity of vision look at versus 10, 11, 218, when you have godly wisdom you will see things from an eternal perspective, not from this tiny little short-lived perspective but from an eternal perspective. And when you see things from the eternal perspective you going to accept the challenges of life. You going to be able to deal with the unexpected turns in life, you will be able to overcome the obstacles that your face and lock and you gonna turn them from obstacle to steppingstone and Solomon said that when you face challenging situations in life. Wisdom will be far more precious to you then. A very rich inheritance. He said while everybody looking for rich inheritance that were looking for a rich uncle but listen is a lot why is he saying that because money loses its value money can be lost but godly wisdom listen carefully please. Godly wisdom keeps its value. Godly wisdom will never be lost. The person who has godly wisdom will be able to create wealth. The person was godly wisdom will be able to use wealth wisely. The person who has godly wisdom will be able to bless others with wealth, but the foolish person with $1 billion can blow it away in a few days I was reading some statistics. Just this week about the vast percentage of those who won these multi-million-dollar lotteries and vast number of them go through these millions of dollars in a very short period of stuff and some of them actually end up homeless. Why foolishness lack of godly wisdom is it is far better than the rich inheritance because wisdom gives you perspective in life gives you perspective on life wisdom. Godly wisdom will give you a vision for your life. Godly wisdom will give you a purpose for life, godly wisdom will give you clarity of vision in your life you know through the years I have been privileged to know some godly people, godly men, particularly in spinner. My greatest privilege to know these men of godly wisdom and learn from them.
I saw them when they faced adversity and I saw them when they were in prosperity and I seen them in both situations, but because of godly wisdom that God has given them that they short from the hand of God, then godly wisdom gave him clarity of vision Weatherby in adversity or in prosperity.
They never change.
All very one way or another they stay faithful to God and with God even when they lost everything and they neither become arrogant in the times of prosperity nor they become bitter in the times of adversity.
When you have godly wisdom you will have balance in life you have balance in life you don't tip the scales of your life one way or the other.
When you have godly wisdom you gonna walk by faith, both in the familiar roads of life and the unfamiliar ones you will be faithful to God in all the circumstances whether the ones that make sense to you. All the ones that don't make sense and will all face the post when you have godly wisdom you will not fret when you see the wicked prospering as a Psalm 73 shows us clearly how many of God's people through generations fret.
They were fretting when they saw the wicked prospering and the godly suffering but you will not fret. You know why because you know the answer to Jesus's question what efforts a man if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul. When you have godly was look at verse 60 verse 16 we have godly wisdom you will not fall in the traps of self-righteousness or legalism or did religious rituals. Why because you walking in the righteousness that comes from fearing the Lord to fear God is to not have to live in this world without self-righteousness and complacency on the one hand, nor any gratitude to God for all of his blessings that he has given you on the other.
The problem with most of us when we face tough times when we face difficult circumstances when we face puzzle months in life, we tend to forget all of the blessings that God has given us and all our focus is on one thing, but all begin to think of all the blessings that God has given you in your life and you will be overwhelmed just like the song we learned in Sunday school, count your blessings name them one by one, you will be amazed to find out what the Lord has done. You don't have to have a similar degree to realize that ingratitude does not bless the heart of God with me confess to you. The one thing that keeps me on my face before God on a regular basis. Is this thought that God accepted me people running around say except Jesus. Please take Jesus sent you not like a little beggar. His begging to get into your life lesson. You better get on your face and knees and thank God that he accepted that he loves you that is inviting you that he wants to fellowship with you and that is the thing that keeps me on my face that he accepted me that he change me that he forgave me that he responded that he stands by May every single day wisdom. Amen. Give God praise wisdom will do your world. Solomon said secondly wisdom will give you clarity of vision and third leases wisdom will give you power for living. Look at verse 19 he says wisdom makes the winds more powerful then turn rulers of the city, but I know people are forever looking for power and the life in the media all the time to control things enough minutes in the titles of books you gonna bookstore set to control things you take control over your stress right now to do that make take control of your schedule. Take control of your time.
Take control of your temper to control spending control of this at the control of the subject control right is easier said than done.
Listen to me only when we daily walk in the spirit of God, who is a spirit of wisdom only when we walk with Jesus under his control, and under his Lordship only them, then we are able to take control of anything you look around and you say the world is out of control the world a look at the earthquakes or killing tens of thousands of people look at the cyclones or killing tens of thousands of look at the natural disasters affecting millions of people around the world. Look at the raging wars around the world. The last time I checked, 31 different hotspots in the world wars are going on an easy to conclude that things are out of control. I had there may be out of your control out of my control, but it never out of God's control.
He is in control and he's in charge.
Whether we're knowledgeable enough and only godly wisdom is able to give us the confidence to know that God is in control no matter what happens, only godly wisdom will be able to give us the power to control the ship of our lives.
Only God's power can control things in our lives.
In fact, it is godly wisdom that gives us the confidence even when we don't have all of the answers even when we don't have all of the answers to all of life's difficulties and problems of all the questions of life we have perfect peace because of godly wisdom because we do have some answers. But if we have all of the answers about all of last questions there would be no need for us to look forward to heaven right what would you look forward to heaven where we have a new glorified bodies where were going to rain and rule with Christ will go be like Jesus after the resurrection. Why would you look forward to this all these New Age people all these motivational preachers and motivational teachers and motivational speakers that going around saying this is life is all there is.
But the truth is, listen to me in this world you not going to live a very long without realizing that you going to face sin that you gonna face temptations of the gonna face the devil that you will be facing manipulation by others that you'll be facing subduction and deception on the part of others you will face all of that in life. But here's what godly wisdom does that when I gonna face these things but godly wisdom is going to give you power to discern the traps of Satan was going to give you power to overcome temptations is going to give you power to defeat Satan is going to give you power to avoid entrapment of this world is going to give you power to save you from allurements of this world is going to give you power to walk in his righteousness alone.
Let me illustrate to you what true life story. What I believe Solomon is trying to tell us in chapter 7 and eight.
Many years ago there was a young man who applied for a job as a pilot of a steamboat up and down the Mississippi River and man who was conducting the interview was convinced in his mind that this young man cannot do the job so he asked him the question young man. He said do you know where the rocks are in the river and the young man scratch his head for a moment and he said no sir I don't know where all the rocks are in the river instead of interview account of feeling justified in his own mind, but before he could even finish his thought. The young man continued this at all. But sir, I know where all the rocks and I know where all the rocks and I might not know where they are but I know whether they got the job. Beloved, listen to me, Solomon is saying that godly wisdom may not show you where all the rocks in life are but the gonna show you where they ain't which will show you how to navigate life with joy and peace and contentment. But the question I think on the mind of some how do you get godly wisdom how to get the godly wisdom. I'm glad you asked. When the Holy Spirit of God comes into indwell you and then on a daily basis, being filled with the spirit of that seek that the Holy Spirit has many names and being called the spirit of wisdom is foremost among them is called the comforter is go call the spirit of wisdom and the problem with so many people are running around not experiencing godly wisdom is because they have grieve the Holy Spirit. They have quench the Holy Spirit in their life and their wondering why they don't have God there was only when the Holy Spirit comes a spirit of wisdom dwells in you, and then daily be filled with that same spirit is over how the Holy Spirit dwells in me. For those of you who have never declared Jesus to be the Lord of your life and the Savior of your soul that we need to begin because the spirit of wisdom cannot come and dwell in you, until Jesus becomes the Lord of your life until you begin to live under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, you will not understand, and you will not experience. Living daily with the spirit of wisdom. Thanks for listening to this message from Dr. Michael use that recently featured on leading the way. If you'd like to know more about us, please visit LTW.org that's LTW.Ward