The proverbs of Solomon, the son of David, king of Israel: To know wisdom and instruction, to perceive the words of understanding, to receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, judgment, and equity; to give subtlety to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion— a wise man will hear and will increase learning, and a man of understanding will attain wise counsel, to understand a proverb and the interpretation, the words of the wise and their riddles. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction (Prov. 1:1-7).
Throughout Scripture, we read that God is wisdom, and He is love. But we are also told to gain understanding through our relationship with God. We read here that the beginning of wisdom is to have the fear of the Lord. A reverential, serious relationship with God, Himself, is a foundation we can build on that is unshakable.
As I was reading this Proverb on Jan. 1, the Holy Spirit led me to Matthew 6:33: "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be given to you."
When the fear of the Lord leads to the wisdom and understanding of God, we begin seeking first His kingdom and His righteousness—and all things are taken care of that concern us.
Matthew 6:25-34 in the Passion Translation reads:
"This is why I tell you to never be worried about your life, for all that you need will be provided, such as food, water, clothing—everything your body needs. Isn't there more to your life than a meal? Isn't your body more than clothing?
"Look at all the birds—do you think they worry about their existence? They don't plant or reap or store up food, yet your heavenly Father provides them each with food. Aren't you much more valuable to your Father than they? So, which one of you by worrying could add anything to your life?
"And why would you worry about your clothing? Look at all the beautiful flowers of the field. They don't work or toil, and yet not even Solomon in all his splendor was robed in beauty more than one of these! So if God has clothed the meadow with hay, which is here for such a short time and then dried up and burned, won't he provide for you the clothes you need—even though you live with such little faith?
"So then, forsake your worries! Why would you say, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear?' For that is what the unbelievers chase after. Doesn't your heavenly Father already know the things your bodies require?
"So above all, constantly chase after the realm of God's kingdom and the righteousness that proceeds from him. Then all these less important things will be given to you abundantly. Refuse to worry about tomorrow, but deal with each challenge that comes your way, one day at a time. Tomorrow will take care of itself."
Jesus is saying here, "Don't worry! Don't worry! Don't worry!"
I believe we, the church, are at a critical juncture in time, and it's very important for us to have the right perspective in the midst of whatever goes on around us. We need to seek God first, be obedient to what He asks of us and trust Him to take care of all that is going on around us.
Hear the Word of the Lord
In 2 Kings 7, Syria had besieged Samaria and there was a great famine. It was so bad that people were willing to purchase bird dung and donkey brains for food. They were afraid, and they couldn't go out of the city because of the siege. In that context, Elisha says: "Hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord ..." (2 Kings 7:1a, MEV).
In other words, this is God's Word! He goes on:
"'Tomorrow about this time a measure of fine flour will be sold for a shekel, and two measures of barley for a shekel, at the gate of Samaria.' Then an officer on whose hand the king leaned answered the man of God, 'If the Lord were to make windows in heaven, could this thing happen?' And he said, 'You will see it with your eyes, but you will not eat from it'" (2 Kings 7:1b-2).
Now remember, there was famine. They were besieged; they could not get out. They were starving to death. But Elisha said something was going to shift in a suddenly moment. He said something was going to change the next day. He said there will be barley, flour and other resources. And the people are saying, "How can that be?"
There were four leprous men at the entry of the gate, and they said to one another, "Why are we sitting here until we die? If we say, 'Let us enter the city,' the famine is in the city, and we shall die there. But if we sit here, we die also. Now come, let us fall into the camp of the Arameans. If they spare our lives, we will live, and if they kill us, we will die" (2 Kings 7:3-4).
I had to chuckle a little bit at their conversation. "If we sit, we die. If we go into the city, we die. If we go to the enemy and beg mercy, we still might die. Isn't it better to get up and stop sitting and doing nothing?"
So, the lepers went to the enemy camp and discovered it was empty!
" For the Lord had caused the Aramean camp to hear the sound of chariots, horses, even the sound of a large army, so that they said to one another, 'Listen, the king of Israel has hired the kings of the Hittites and the kings of the Egyptians to come against us.' So they got up and ran away in the twilight and abandoned their tents, their horses, and their donkeys. The camp remained just as it was, and they ran for their lives" (2 Kings 7:6-7).
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