Ecclesiastes 7:11-12,19,23-25: Wisdom For All
Read: Ecclesiastes 7:11-12,19,23-25
The value of wisdom cannot be overstated, and the Preacher in Ecclesiastes seems to recognize this. He compares wisdom to three things. First he compares it to an inheritances, calling it a “good thing”. When one inherits something, he or she does not necessarily have to work for it or earn it — it is simply given to the one because of the person’s relationship to the one bequeathing the inheritances. Wisdom is like this too. It is freely offered to all those who will hear it and receive it. One does not have to work hard to ascertain wisdom, just simply listen to the wise (Proverbs 13:20). Second, the Preacher compares wisdom to the sun — it blesses everyone. There is no limit to the reach of wisdom and it does not discriminate against those who wish to receive it. For this reason it does bless everyone. Only the fool disdains wisdom. Third, the Preacher compares wisdom to money saying that both are as a shelter. The contrast though is that wisdom “preserves” one’s life. Money and wisdom can buffer one against harm, but wisdom, unlike money, can actually save one’s life. When the buffer is gone, only wisdom will remain, and it is hear that only wisdom can work.
But the Preacher had given staunch warning about wisdom for wisdom’s sake The Preacher isn’t putting down wisdom in general, rather the pursuit of wisdom for wisdom’s sake. Proverbs speaks of wisdom in great lengths, saying that is useful any number of things (Proverbs 1:1-6). Proverbs 1:7 says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, rather than the end of it. Ecclesiastes concludes the matter after pursuing all other things to an end (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Proverbs starts the book with the fear of the Lord. Wisdom for the purpose of serving the Lord is always better. James 1:5 says that one should ask for wisdom and the Lord will give it (Proverbs 2:6), and one should ask for it in all things so that the Lord can teach one how to live skillfully.
Christians should ask for and implement wisdom for the purpose of becoming more like Christ in his or her life by living in accordance with the ways of God. Wisdom is readily available to all who will receive it from those who are wise and from God’s word. One should apply his or her self to obtaining wisdom so that he or she can live skillfully in all matters!
Lord, help to walk with the wise so that I will become wise!