Wisdom is Expressed in Humility

Practical application: The nitty gritty…it is a blessing…not so great at the time. This is at the heart of the Discipleship Process; refinement and shaping. Teachability born of Humility is the essential attitude of the Serious Disciple, for us, Jesus Christ’s Body, it is true Wisdom.

This Book & today’s passage , define wisdom from Human & Heavenly standpoints: Big Picture and Daily Picture (Eternal Perspective creates Relationally Skillful Living)

Big Picture of Humility & Teachability: Salvation: The necessary humility to surrender. Daily Picture: Embody the Humility Christ modeled & taught to bless others and ultimately glorify God!

So is Wisdom about Skillfully living relationally with Humility & Grace here ‘Under The Sun? Or is Wisdom express in being teachable and humble before God and surrendering your life to His purposes and ways focused on eternal things? Yes! Both and Each!

At the core of Wisdom is humility because the enemy of Wisdom is Pride. Pride destroys Wisdom & Pride is the father of all sin. The denial of Pride is the crucial mistake you and I can make: “I am not being proud, I’m just right”

Pride keeps us from being who God wants us to be; under the sun and eternally. So we can choose to value and intentionally pursue humility & teachability. Our text today points us in God’s direction and gives us practical ways to: Recognize Pride / Surrender Control of our need to be right & ‘Know It All’ / Let the reality of God’s sovereignty drive our value of being meek & teachable / Focus on problem areas to watch for Pride leading to lacking wisdom.

Ch. 10

1 As dead flies cause even a bottle of perfume to stink, so a little foolishness spoils great wisdom and honor. 2 A wise person chooses the right road; a fool takes the wrong one. 3 You can identify fools just by the way they walk down the street! 4 If your boss is angry at you, don’t quit! A quiet spirit can overcome even great mistakes.

  • The application of wisdom includes the exclusion of ALL foolishness
  • There is no wisdom in false bravado: Wisdom is about being teachable!
  • Humility is necessary for teachability

5 There is another evil I have seen under the sun. Kings and rulers make a grave mistake 6 when they give great authority to foolish people and low positions to people of proven worth. 7 I have even seen servants riding horseback like princes—and princes walking like servants!

  • It is a lack of humility that clouds the judgement of people in power
  • Kings and Rulers are known for their lack of humility & teachability
  • Arrogance in leadership is the norm ‘Under the Sun’

Arrogant Leadership is Rejected in Christ’s Kingdom

But Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:25-28

8 When you dig a well, you might fall in. When you demolish an old wall, you could be bitten by a snake. 9 When you work in a quarry, stones might fall and crush you. When you chop wood, there is danger with each stroke of your ax.

  • There are inherent risks associated with whatever you undertake
  • The wise approach is a humble approach: realistically accessing the situation

10 Using a dull ax requires great strength, so sharpen the blade. That’s the value of wisdom; it helps you succeed. 11 If a snake bites before you charm it, what’s the use of being a snake charmer?

  • Utilize the skill and resources that you have to minimize risk and danger
  • Success is good…are you humble enough to glorify God with it?

12 Wise words bring approval, but fools are destroyed by their own words. 13 Fools base their thoughts on foolish assumptions, so their conclusions will be wicked madness; 14 they chatter on and on. No one really knows what is going to happen; no one can predict the future.

  • What are wise words?
  • Your ‘World View’ colors your analysis of events and circumstances
  • Foolish Assumptions: A ‘World View’ that doesn’t recognize the ‘World Maker’
  • Bad data in = bad conclusions
  • The less than humble desire to predict the future: foolishness!

15 Fools are so exhausted by a little work that they can’t even find their way home. 16 What sorrow for the land ruled by a servant, the land whose leaders feast in the morning. 17 Happy is the land whose king is a noble leader and whose leaders feast at the proper time to gain strength for their work, not to get drunk.

  • A basic definition of a fool is one who doesn’t value work
  • Worthy leadership knows the right time to do things
  • Doing things at the right time is about giving your emotions and time to others
  • Are you teachable about how you set priorities and manage your time?

18 Laziness leads to a sagging roof; idleness leads to a leaky house. 19 A party gives laughter, wine gives happiness, and money gives everything!

  • Wisdom is about doing what needs to be done when it needs to be done
  • Ecc. 3: For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven
  • These are all things that have value: ‘Under The Sun’

20 Never make light of the king, even in your thoughts. And don’t make fun of the powerful, even in your own bedroom. For a little bird might deliver your message and tell them what you said.

  • It is wise to stay humble regarding those who have power over you
  • You don’t know what might be repeated…(lots of ‘little Birds’ out there)
  • Wisdom expressed in humility is not saying things you don’t want repeated

Ch. 11:1-6

1 Send your grain across the seas, and in time, profits will flow back to you. 2 But divide your investments among many places, for you do not know what risks might lie ahead.

  • Branching out into new markets & diversification of your investment (change)
  • It is wise because it recognizes our lack of control & builds ‘God Dependance’
  • The ultimate humility of being ‘The Created’ under the authority of ‘The Creator’

3 When clouds are heavy, the rains come down. Whether a tree falls north or south, it stays where it falls. 4 Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest.

  • It rains when it wants to, trees fall where they want to…nature is beyond control
  • As we are able to manipulate nature more we are drawn to more pride
  • Mystery is a good thing
  • Deal with what you have instead of expecting things to be perfect / ‘your way’

5 Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things. 6 Plant your seed in the morning and keep busy all afternoon, for you don’t know if profit will come from one activity or another—or maybe both.

  • There is so much that is beyond us, if we are humble enough to admit it
  • Do we have a clear picture of God / Good Theology based on Scripture?
  • A proper appreciation for God’s all encompassing power (World & Word)
  • The awe and wonder of God / The ‘Fear of God can and will make us humble

Application Questions:

How much do you value being humble & teachable?

How well and often do you recognize pride in your life?

What is the connection between foolish over-talking and teachability?

It what ways are humility and doing things at the proper time connected?

Why should you pursue Humility?