Wisdom from Above
INTRODUCTION: The book of James has a way of causing me to love the Proverbs more dearly.
''For the LORD gives wisdom;
From His mouth come knowledge and understanding;
He stores up sound wisdom for the upright;
He is a shield to those who walk uprightly;
He guards the paths of justice,
And preserves the way of His saints.''
James makes it clear that ''wisdom from above'' cannot be known apart from a saving relationship with Jesus Christ, Who is Himself, ''the power of God and the wisdom of God'' (1 Cor 1:30). James serves not only as a practical theologian, but also he is the master of contradicting principles; the book of James is loaded with the conjunction ''but.'' In these two verses, James gives the most comprehensive commentary on wisdom.
I. THE FIRST IN WISDOM 17
''But the wisdom that is from above…'' remember, not an attainment of a man, but a gift of God; not acquired, but applied. This wisdom is contrasted to that which ''does not descend from above.'' 15
''is first pure'' - being followed by ''then'' leads us to take ''pure'' to be a motive for godly wisdom rather than a characteristic as James will list seven. The motivation for this ''wisdom from above'' is motivated by purity. Its primary quality is purity. It is pure in the sense of being undefiled, morally pure. Speaks of:
1. Spiritual Integrity
2. Moral Sincerity
This purity comes when one has been cleansed by Christ's blood, Who is Himself pure (the very same word is used in 1 John 3:3), has received Christ's purity, and as a result, is leading a morally pure life.
This person's heart is pure in its unmixed devotion to God. This carries the idea of being pure in one's focus on God, concentrating on serving Him. It involves moral purity before God and devotional purity in one's focus
''Wisdom being pure is the key to all the qualities of wisdom to follow. It is the overarching att ...
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