If / Then Logic

She cries aloud in the street . . . in the markets she raises her voice. Hers is a plea . . . “How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple?” . . . why are you settling for uninformed naivete? . . . why would you embrace foolishness? It’s the call of Wisdom (Proverbs 1:20-22). These opening chapters of Proverbs are among my favorite oases to visit in Scripture. They are consistently a place of renewal . . . a place of recommitting myself to the “fear of God which is the beginning of knowledge” (1:7) . . . a place of refreshing my desire to pursue the word of God that I might, by His grace and through the illumination of His Spirit, have in some measure the wisdom of God. And what grabs me this morning is a pretty simple, and evident, cause and effect relationship in Proverbs 2.

My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God . . . Then you will understand righteousness and justice and equity, every good path . . . So you will be delivered from the forbidden woman . . . So you will walk in the way of the good and keep to the paths of the righteous . . . “   (Proverbs 2:1-5, 9, 16, 20 ESV)

If / Then logic. Not too hard to grasp. If you do this, then that will happen. It’s a conditional promise . . . a result assured based on a action . . . an outcome that will occur because of some input.

For those who pursue the word of God . . . for those who receive it . . . who treasure it . . . who seek it like precious metal . . . who search for it like hidden treasure . . . and cry out for understanding concerning it . . . there is a promise. Seek and you will find . . . search and you will understand. And we’re not talking about ending up with some high-minded theoretical understanding of doctrine here, we’re talking about that much needed day to day wisdom . . . that insight needed for skillful living . . . that filter which reveals the “good path” . . . which delivers from the smooth words of this seductive world (2:16) . . . which establishes a solid footing on “the paths of righteousness.”

Spending time in the Word is not just a good Christian habit . . . doing morning devotions isn’t just a priority because “if I don’t I’ll have a lousy day” . . . faithfully following a reading plan isn’t just about the accomplishment of reading through the Bible in one year . . . while a good habit, a good start to the day, and a good goal are all . . . well, good . . . passionately pursing the Word of God will result in the Wisdom of God . . . and that’s amazing!!!

Knowledge of the King and His Kingdom will result in a practical know-how as we navigate through this world as pilgrims on our way home. Correctly dividing the word of God will result in accurately discerning between right and wrong . . . and deciding between good, better, and best. Having our minds exercised by the God-breathed Scriptures will result in an ever present, biblically informed, mindset that directs us as we seek to “walk in a manner worthy of our calling.”

Paul says we have the mind of Christ . . . the born again ability to have the things of God revealed to us through the Spirit . . . the spiritual DNA to comprehend something of the thoughts of God through the Teacher who indwells us . . . to be taught by the Spirit that we might understand the things freely given us by God (1Cor. 2:10-16). Proverbs reminds me that mine is to give the Spirit something to work with . . . a seeking heart taking in the Word of God.

If I pursue the Word of God, then I will start to think in a way that is consistent with my calling as a child of God. If I pursue His wisdom, then I will walk in a way that brings me blessing . . . and Him glory. Amen?

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