Another excerpt from our newly published book “Considering Wisdom“
Chapter 6 (pgs 77-79)
A key factor when we consider wisdom is the trait of listening. The words listen, listened, and listens are seen in the Bible over 350 times. To listen does not mean to give ear only to the sound being emitted.
“Listen: 1) to give ear; to attend closely with a view to hear. 2) To obey; to yield to advice; to follow admonition.”
Following is just a small sample of how listening has to do with wisdom:
Listen to counsel and receive instruction, that you may be wise in your latter days. (Proverbs 19:20)
Cease listening to instruction, my son, and you will stray from the words of knowledge. (Proverbs 19:27)
Listen to your father who begot you, and do not despise your mother when she is old. Buy the truth, and do not sell it, also wisdom and instruction and understanding. (Proverbs 23:22–23)
A wise man listens to advice. (Proverbs 12:15b NIV)
God wants us, His creation, to know Him. And when we know Him, we know He wants us to trust Him, to have faith in Him that He truly is our God, Creator, and Savior. When we know Him, we believe His Commandments are what make us knowledgeable that we have offended Him—that is, sinned against Him—by breaking at least one of His Ten Commandments.
For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point; he is guilty of all. (James 2:10)
The penalty for breaking God’s Law is death. The reward for keeping His Law—that is, by being in God’s view as having perfection—the reward is life.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
The Lord Jesus Christ took that penalty of death for us, even death by being nailed through His hands and feet to hang for six hours until dead on a wooden cross. When we believe that His shed blood satisfies our Father’s wrath against us, and that His shed blood cleanses us of our sins, and that by His death we are given life, and that He was raised from the dead, then, by this believing, we are seen by God as having the same perfection as our God and Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
It can also be stated like this: When we believe in God being three Persons: the Father, the Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit, then, by the shed blood of Jesus, God forgives us and sees us as no longer being sinners, but as having the righteousness of God Himself. Paul the apostle spoke these words to some Greek philosophers in Athens:
Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man [Jesus] whom He has ordained [commissioned Him to die for us and to be the Judge]. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead. (Acts 17:30–31)
Don’t miss that last part of the verse: “raising Him from the dead.” By the power to raise Christ Jesus from the dead, He has proven beyond any shadow of a doubt that He is indeed God. And this is the basis of the hope that every born again Christian holds. God promises to do the same for all who trust, believe, and have faith in Him. This is the beginning of wisdom. Revere Him. That center part of the Bible bears repeating:
It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. (Psalm 118:8)
If we listen to God and use the wisdom He provides, we are guaranteed to have abundance in our lives. Quoting the Lord Jesus:
The thief [Satan] does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)
My sheep [believers] hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. (John 10:27–28)
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 The original American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, s.v. “listen”
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Unless otherwise stated.