Wisdom

Day 17

Prayer for the day

Show me your ways, O LORD, and teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me,* for you are the God of my salvation; in you have I trusted all the day long.

Scripture for the day

Genesis 41-42, Matthew 12:1-23

What does it mean for a person to be wise? Does it mean he always does the right thing? Does it mean she is smarter than everyone around her? Does it mean he sees what is ahead more clearly than others? Does it mean she is able to think grander thoughts and do grander things?

In Joseph’s story, wisdom looks like a glimpse into the mind of God. Joseph is thought of as wise because he is able to interpret dreams and to plan well for the future based on the information in the dreams. Yet he is careful in every case to ensure that his audience knows it is not by his own power that he is able to do things. Joseph specifically attributes his ability to God.

Jesus also is able to glimpse the mind of God. He speaks of the Sabbath, interpreting the Scriptures and explaining the mind and desires of God behind the Sabbath laws the Pharisees are quoting.

Wisdom is shown clearly to us in these two passages (and much of the rest of the Scriptures) as the humble response to the revelation of God: Wisdom is getting a glimpse into God’s heart, and responding in humility. Wisdom is the recognition of God’s entire otherness…God is transcendent, un-searchable, un-knowable, un-fathomable, and God, in His goodness, reaches down to us, becomes immanent, allows us to search Him, makes himself known, and explains Himself perfectly in the person of Jesus Christ.

Wisdom is seeing God for who He is, and seeing, in God, ourselves for who we are. And then falling on our knees in gratitude to the God who did not have to reveal Himself to us, but did, and does, and will.

Thanks be to God.

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