We usually think that faith is the result of wisdom. We are wise, so we act in a faithful manner of life. There is no argument about that, but we also should consider the fact that wisdom is the result of faith.
Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom (James 3:13).
I don’t want to belabor the idea I wrote about yesterday, but this is another verse that speaks to it. The things we tell ourselves determine what we believe and do. Today I read a meme that expressed it well.
Be careful what you say to yourself. You’re listening.
Maybe this is dealing with the broad principles of thought. Maybe the passage expresses the dangers of a negative attitude. Well, no one should argue that positive attitudes are not important in life. Don’t teach yourself bad attitudes. But how often have we hurt ourselves because we told ourselves ideas that were false instead of attitudes? Think about that. I imagine that you could think of several times that has happened.
A False Dichotomy
The hungry man says, “I had no choice but to rob others.” But he did have a choice. He exercised his mind and convinced himself of a false idea by creating a false dichotomy. Or maybe he didn’t conceive of that dichotomy himself. Satan is certainly active in this world. We humans tend to limit ourselves to these terrible choices instead of taking the time to creatively tackle the problem at hand and finding a solution that leads to godliness. We love the idea that we have no choice when we are faced with the guilt of sin.
So the bartender has to make a living. The stripper has to get through college or feed her baby. Gangsters are trapped into a life filled with hatred, prison, and worse. Prostitutes have to eat. Liars have to win. We create an endless supply of false dichotomies, so much so that we are all familiar with the saying, “Whatever you have to tell yourself.”
Oh, but the wise person will not accept such lies. We should seek wisdom from above, not the worldly wisdom which surrounds us. When we “receive with meekness the implanted word” instead of the words of our own wisdom, and we act upon those ideas, we prove by our very works what words we are accepting. In this case, we choose to have faith in God’s instructions. When we accept God’s word in meekness and act upon it, we are choosing through faith to be wise.
Wisdom is the result of faith.
Whose words are you choosing to follow?
See you tomorrow!