The psalmist Moses prayed, ‘So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom’, Psalm 90:12.
As he uses the word ‘so’ here then it must mean that he is in the middle of a line of thought: therefore we must read what he is already saying. The immediate context is from verse seven:
‘For we are consumed by thine anger, and by thy wrath are we troubled. Thou hast set our iniquities before thee, our secret sins in the light of thy countenance. For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.
‘The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away. Who knoweth the power of thine anger? Even according to thy fear, so is thy wrath.
‘So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.’
Moses betrayed a healthy fear of the Lord in these words. He knew that God could see into his heart: that even his secret sins were not hidden from the view of the Almighty – from the light of his countenance. Here was the Holy God before whom Moses and the people lived, and he shrank before His majesty, power and wrath. Sin was no light thing to this man of faith and he saw that because his life on earth was so fleeting, and that eternity before him was so real, vast and imminent, he needed the Saviour, the Redeemer – here referred to as ‘wisdom’ – to abide and remain with him, cp. the whole Psalm; and so he prayed, ‘teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.’
But Moses was not just praying for himself, as the ‘us’ and ‘our’ indicate; but for himself and the people under his charge. So this was no personal or private prayer but a prayer which, if answered, would issue in a spiritual unity, and a body of people in the faith growing in grace and in the knowledge of the Saviour. And what greater fruit could be manifest among the people of God: that their one desire would be to ‘apply their hearts unto wisdom’? Indeed, ‘If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering’, James 1:5,6.
But where are the people today who have such a desire? Who, first of all, are even numbering their days in the light of the brevity of time, the sinfulness of sin, and the imminence of eternity; and, therefore, are seeking to apply their hearts unto wisdom: it being the only sure and needful thing to do? Again, does the professing church today even know what wisdom is? For you can be sure – as we will go on to show – that this wisdom is not to be found in or of ourselves; and if not there, then where? In the light of which, is there any evidence among us of a felt deficiency of this wisdom, of a mourning over the lack of it, or even of the need for it? Only the reader can answer these questions.
Your Days Are Numbered
Before we come to look at what it is to ‘apply our hearts unto wisdom’ we must first realise that, as ‘our days are numbered’, it would be good if we were found in the habit of doing the same. Moses, who actually lived until he was a hundred and twenty years, obviously felt the need to pray to the Lord that He would teach both himself and the people to be sober-minded regarding the length of their lives on earth: even to the numbering of their days.
Nowadays, of course, we count our ages in years – and children usually add a fraction of a year as well: ‘I’m six-and-three-quarters!’ This is because we, in our carnal forms of religion and worldly-mindedness, have become dulled to spiritual things and have lost any real vision of how God thinks and judges, cp. Prov. 29:18. But in this psalm we read that in the mind and estimation of godly souls our lives are counted as much in days as in years: hence the phrases, ‘all our days are passed away… the days of our years… number our days.’
It may be interesting for the reader to discover that, if we do count our ages in days instead of years, then our lives don’t seem to be as long as we imagine. Though this should not surprise us, for the scriptures often speak of the brevity of our lives: ‘What is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away’, James 4:14; ‘LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is, that I may know how frail I am. Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth, and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity’, Psalm 39:4,5; ‘Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and is full of trouble. He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not’, Job 14:1,2; ‘For [the LORD] knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust. As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more’, Psalm 103:14-16, etc. Days, days, days!
If the reader is honest, and perhaps a little more advanced in years, then he will not be able to escape the truth of the above sentiments. Where have all the years gone! But, no; where have all the days gone! If I live till my next birthday – fifty years – I will have been alive a mere 18,262 days – including leap days: not even 20,000 days old!
The following sobering statistics show how reasonable it is for God to draw our attention to ‘the days of our years’; for they are not many:
10 years = 3,652 days
20 years = 7,305 days
25 years = 9,131 days (Silver wedding anniversary, perhaps? What, all those years only 9,000 days!)
10,000 days = 27 years and about 5 months
30 years = 10,957 days
40 years = 14,610 days
50 years = 18,262 (Golden wedding)
20,000 days = 54 years and about 9 months
60 years = 21,915 days (The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee)
65 years = 23,741 days (Retirement?)
70 years = 25,567 (The psalmist’s ‘threescore years and ten’)
80 years = 29,220 (‘…and if by reason of strength they be fourscore…’ – not even 30,000!)
33,333 days = 91 years and about 4 months
100 years = 36,525 (A telegram from the Queen!)
40,000 days = 109 years and 6 months
120 years = 43,830 days (Moses’ age)
So, it’s only been about 730,000 days since the Lord Jesus and his apostles walked the earth: that’s only 25 lifetimes at 80 years a time; or about 80 generations! And as the earth is about 6,000 years old then it’s only about 2,190,000 days since ‘God created the heaven and the earth’; and six days less since the creation of Adam. (By the way, Adam lived 930 years; therefore his life covered nearly one sixth of the whole of time thus far – if he had lived in our day and had died this year , he’d have been born in 1082! And as the Flood came 1565 years after the Creation then Genesis chapters 1-6 actually cover a quarter of the history of the world.)
Now if you want any further enlightenment on how brief, fleeting, and vain our lives are – along with the ultimate worth of anything we might have achieved in this world – then just read the book of Ecclesiastes. O man! What is thy life!
It’s days; only days – and then you’re gone. And then it’s judgment! ‘God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil’, Eccl. 12:14. ‘It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment’, Heb. 9:27. And in that judgment? ‘And the books were opened… and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works’, Rev. 20:12. Yes, everything we’ve ever done, said, thought or intended on each of the few days of our lives, has been meticulously recorded in heaven – even what you’ve just thought upon reading that statement – and if you die unsaved then your book will be opened on that day and you will be judged accordingly.
But alas, these books will be books of condemnation; for although we might like to think we’ve been good people – or at least not been really bad people – and that we have done some good things in our little lives – or at least not done some really wicked things – nevertheless when all is said and done, according to God’s judgment, actually, ‘there is none righteous, no, not one’, and ‘there is none that doeth good, no, not one’. Before God all ‘our’ righteousnesses appear as filthy rags; for all are sinners by nature and by practice – a sinner being an active rebel against God; and all who die in this state – whether they’ve lived 3,000 or 33,000 days – will be cast into the lake of fire – the second death – to be tormented for ever and ever because of their sin and sins.
Now, again, O man; What is your life? And where do you stand at this moment in the judgment of God?
So the psalmist cries – and no wonder – ‘Teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.’ Moses knew his own frailty; he knew his and the people’s natural tendency not to consider the number of their days; and so he knew that, as with everything else in the realm of truth and salvation, it must be God who must teach, reveal, and guide. Hundreds of years later it would be written by Isaiah the prophet – although Moses plainly already knew this in experience – that ‘all thy children shall be taught of the LORD’, Isa. 54:13; so here he cries, ‘teach us’.
What then is wisdom, and how may we apply our hearts unto it? Well, whatever the answer, we can be sure that it will be our salvation.
As has already been stated – and all taught of God will know this to be true – the wisdom of which Moses spoke is not natural wisdom: it is not found in us by nature. This is proved on one level by considering the wisest man that ever lived: King Solomon. His wisdom was granted him by the Lord upon request for it; thus it was called ‘the wisdom of God.’ Solomon knew he was bereft of that wisdom he needed to rule the people justly and so he asked it of the Lord above all things – yea, even above long life, riches, honour, and the life of his enemies, 1 Kings 3. But this ‘wisdom of Solomon’ seems to be a wisdom which pertained principally to this life. Was this the wisdom – in all its fulness – which Moses prayer for? Well, Moses certainly had needed wisdom to lead and rule the oft-faithless children of Israel in the wilderness for forty years. But, no; there was some greater character to the wisdom which Moses – the man who walked by faith – felt to need. Here was the desire for spiritual wisdom; Moses, in the constant presence of the Lord, needed to be ‘made wise unto salvation’, in the fullness of the meaning of that word.
And there is evidence from scripture that Moses already knew what, or who, this wisdom was: Hebrews 11:24 and following states, ‘By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season…’ And why would Moses walk in such a way; what greater ‘estimation’ was working deep within his soul, apprehension and realisation? Why, nothing less than the knowledge of Christ! ‘…esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward.’ Furthermore, ‘By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king’, but in the fear of the Lord, as before stated, ‘for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible’: ‘as seeing’ means ‘as being constantly aware of, in the presence of, and under the direction of’ the Lord himself: cp. Jesus’ ‘but ye see me’ of John 14:18,19; 16:15,16. And again, Moses’ knowledge and revelation of Christ, and of Christ crucified, was the object and foundation of his faith and salvation, in that ‘through faith he kept the Passover, and the sprinkling of blood…’ Heb. 11:24-28.
But what had all that to do with wisdom? Because Christ is the wisdom of his people. Paul wrote to the church at Corinth that through the work of God they were found ‘in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom…’ 1 Cor. 1:30. Christ is ‘the wisdom of God’, verse 24, and he is all our wisdom: our own natural wisdom – and all the supposed wisdom which is in the world – being ‘foolishness with God’, 1 Cor. 3:18-20. We do have an innate knowledge of the existence, eternal power and deity of God, but in our foolishness – not to say in our ungodliness and unrighteousness – we soon hold this truth down in unrighteousness and become vain in the workings of our mind, Rom. 1. Left to ourselves we will never come into a knowledge of the truth, nor be able to reason according to wisdom. Thus it is only as we are found ‘in Christ’ that we will know wisdom; which can come about only by experiencing the new birth, John 3.
But it must be emphasised here that Christ isn’t just the person to go to merely to acquire wisdom, as if it is something he possesses apart from himself; no, he is wisdom itself. If you know Jesus Christ then you have wisdom, for you ‘have the mind of Christ’; therefore you ‘know all things’ and are ‘made wise unto salvation’. Moses knew Christ and therefore was wise. And this knowledge drew him on to desire to know Christ more: ‘…that we may apply our hearts unto Christ’; which, of course, pre-echoes Paul’s desires of Philippians 3: ‘that I may know him’ further, whom he already knew; and Peter’s at the close of his Second Epistle: to ‘grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.’
It may also be interesting for the reader to discover that this is the wisdom the ‘men’ possessed who came from the east in search of ‘him that is born King of the Jews’, Matt. 2:1-12. If we keep exclusively to the scriptural text we find that these men were nowhere called sages, philosophers, astrologers, or even kings; no, they had obviously been made wise by revelation from God that the true King of the Jews had been born, and that therefore they were ‘come to worship him’. Worship? ‘And when they were come into the house, they… fell down, and worshipped him’, giving him gifts which reflected what they’d had revealed to them regarding the Person and work of this King. Wise men: men made wise.
Yet wisdom is only one of the attributes of Christ to his people. For he is also their life; their peace, and their rest. He is all their sustenance: being their bread and water of life. As well as being their wisdom he is also their righteousness, their sanctification, and their redemption; and his is their faith. He is their light, their strait gate, their way, their rock, and their salvation: well, his name means salvation, doesn’t it? Again, he is their head – what is a body without a head? – he is their truth, their Word, their doctrine, their knowledge and, therefore, their wisdom. He is their one true desire, their glory and their all in all. The Lord Jesus Christ is everything to his people. Well, think about it; what else can being ‘in Christ’ actually mean!
And didn’t Moses know Christ as all these things? In 1 Corinthians 10 Paul wrote of Moses’ and the peoples’ eating of the same spiritual meat, and drinking of the same spiritual drink: ‘for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ’, 1 Cor. 10:1-4. What was Moses’ great desire above all things? ‘…thy presence…’, Ex. 33:14,15.
Yes, Christ is the wisdom of God. But as we have already said the world knows nothing of these things. Is the reader lost in this world? By that I mean, are you confused as you look around and wonder what ‘it’ is all about? Is it that you can’t really make head nor tail of life? Why is the world the way it is? Why do things happen the way they do? What is the answer to everything? Is there an answer? Not in the world there isn’t; for the world is fallen: in darkness and spiritually blind; full of vanity and lies, deceit and pretence: ‘Surely men of low degree are vanity, and men of high degree are a lie: to be laid in the balance, they are all alike: lighter than vanity’, Ps. 62:9. Yes, man might have apparently increased in knowledge; but not all science is truth. And man, in Adam, having eaten of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil – that is, having gone after the lusts of the flesh and of the mind: the way of the world – may like to think that because of his increased knowledge he has become more wise than ever he was before – after all, wasn’t the eating of that tree meant ‘to make one wise’? – nevertheless, man is not wise, he does not know, he does not understand; in fact, he has lost the pure intellect he was created with, and has become blind and foolish in things relating to God, to his own soul, and to eternity.
But to what ‘wisdom’ did man think he would attain by listening to the voice of the deceiver in the Garden of Eden? Independence from God and his word? An endless life on earth in the flesh without God? The eventual deification of himself? Yes, and modern man verily believes that he has almost achieved these goals: just one more evolutionary step and he will be there. And how has this ‘ancient hope’ been increasingly manifested – especially over the last few hundred years: what wisdom has modern man attained to? Why, democracy, of course: man – not God – in control of his life and destiny.
Democracy is the wisdom of man: the quintessence of self governance. In all aspects of his life, under democracy, man thinks that he has arrived at a position where no-one apart from himself can provide the answers and the framework for his ‘happiness’, ‘freedom’, knowledge and future security. Think about it. Listen to the received wisdom of the day – readily propagated by the media; discern the overall message – the world-view – propounded by ‘science’ and see if these things are not so.
But for all that, democracy is a godless system and therefore a lie. O yes, with our freedom to vote, have our say, and live our lives relatively unhindered in our modern liberal society, we think we have attained to self governance, and have power over our lives and our future. But democracy will issue, ultimately, in one thing, and one thing only: a one world government under the rule of Satan himself who will soon manifest himself as the great world leader; worshipped by all as the one who has, at last, brought ‘peace and safety’ upon the earth. Yes, using ‘all power and signs and lying wonders’ he will have united the rulers of the earth under his authority – they all having ‘one mind’; who will reign with this ‘beast’ on the earth for… a thousand years? No. For just ‘one hour’, in a godless reign of terror – for the remaining people of God – before ‘sudden destruction cometh upon them’: Jesus Christ’s return in power and great glory, defeating his enemies and ushering in the day of judgment. Yes; that will be the end of enlightened and emancipated man’s so-called wisdom.
You don’t believe it? Well, just open your eyes; because it’s coming to pass as we speak! Why is it that long established dictatorships are suddenly falling – especially in North Africa and the Middle East? And why is the great cry for ‘democracy’ sounding in places that have lived without it for millennia? Because for the world to accept some sort of world government, it must be brought into being through the democratic process, so that ‘wise’ modern man can feel engaged. So the powers that be – who rule secretly behind the scenes, and behind this façade we call democracy – are working in all the malign ways they can to destroy the old ways, systems and mentality, to bring in this one world democratic system as the springboard for the ushering in of the new world order, and the manifestation of the man of sin: that Wicked who is about to appear to deceive and subjugate the whole world.
But if you observe all this with ‘the mind of Christ’, then you will find that this is nothing other than the following of the ancient lies which were told in the Garden: for wise man is still hearkening to and believing ‘Yea, hath God said?’ ‘Ye shall not surely die.’ ‘Ye shall be as gods!’ – could ‘democracy’ be better defined? So it turns out that modern man is no more wise than a blind deluded fool, being merely a bound serf of Satan, as he glories and immerses himself in the serpent’s democratic process: engaging in ‘politics’ and the political system, thinking that therein lies the truth of how the world should be managed.
But looking at the basic principle which underpins politics, what ‘wisdom’ do you find? Lies and deceit. Think about it: the foundational principle of politics is, ‘Get in power; stay in power.’ So politicians necessarily have to be changeable creatures; they have to move and adapt with the times. They do not and cannot exist and continue upon stable convictions but must perceive the mood of the times and present themselves as the champions of ‘modern society’ – be ‘politically correct’ – so that the people will be attracted to their present day message and vote them into power. And if in a generation’s time ‘the people’ have changed attitudes towards social issues, etc. then the politicians must adjust their ‘convictions’ accordingly – employing ‘political correctness’. Why? ‘Get in power; stay in power’ at all costs. Therefore, I say, the whole process is vanity and lies, devoid of truth, full of deceit; is a great deception; and is a following of the ancient lies.
But the wisdom of God is different; and set altogether on another plane. For it is stable, unchanging, constant: yea, ‘the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever’, Heb. 13:8; and only – only – those made wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus can see, perceive, know and understand these things; after all the apostles’ doctrine does declare that ‘he that is spiritual judgeth – discerneth – all things’, 1 Cor. 2:15. Yes, the wisdom of this world is a lie, is foolishness; whereas the wisdom of God is his Son! Only in Christ can we see the world for what it is; can we perceive the hand of the prince of the power of the air working in the lives of the children of disobedience; and when we see it: when we do have our eyes opened to all those places of scripture that point to these things – enabling us to discern ‘the signs of the times’ – then it will shock us as we realise that it is actually coming to pass in our day! But then it will sober us, showing us that we cannot, and should not, try to change it – by political engagement; and will eventually separate us from this way of the world completely; leaving us truly as ‘strangers and pilgrims on the earth’, and ultimately, as the end draws near, leaving us only ‘looking up, for our redemption draweth nigh’, Luke 21:28. [See also in my ‘Letters’ – No. 10]
Proverbs 8 and 9
The most striking passage of scripture regarding wisdom in relation to Christ is Proverbs chapters eight and nine. Consider them in the light of the public ministry of the Lord Jesus – of Wisdom. ‘Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice? She standeth in the top of high places, by the way in the places of the paths’, etc. Prov. 8:1-4. ‘Then cried Jesus in the temple as he taught, saying, Ye both know me, and ye know whence I am…’ ‘In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water’, John 7:28,37,38. ‘I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, wither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing’, John 18:20.
But when Christ comes by his Spirit and begins a good work in our hearts he cries in the high places of our sin, pride and self-righteousness; he cries down our works, hypocrisy and rebellion; and so exposes by his word that ‘our’ way and paths are leading us to death and damnation.
‘O ye simple, understand wisdom: and, ye fools, be ye of an understanding heart’, Prov. 8:5. ‘When Jesus perceived, he said unto them, O ye of little faith, why reason ye among yourselves, because ye have brought no bread? Do ye not yet understand…? How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, but that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees?’ Matt. 16:6-12. ‘Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?’ Luke 24:25,26.
No, naturally we have no wisdom and understanding. Even the religious: even the professed Christian in himself, has no understand of himself. And this is manifest especially in the modern profession. Generally speaking they no longer want doctrine or truth as such; they just want ‘love’, togetherness, fellowship, praise and worship. But ‘O ye simple…’; ‘Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets: she crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying, How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge? Turn you at my reproof…’, Prov. 1:20-23; cp. also 2 Tim. 4:3,4. If ever the words of the Lord described the state of the modern church it is those. Believe it, reader; believe it, and fall under it.
And then, read verses 6-8 in Proverbs 8 to see a perfect description of ‘the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth’? Jesus spoke only ‘excellent things… right things… truth… and in righteousness’. Wickedness was an abomination to his lips, as it still is; and there was nothing froward or perverse in them. Indeed, verse 9, ‘they are all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge’; as the disciples declared: ‘Now speakest thou plainly, and speakest no proverb. Now are we sure that thou knowest all things, and needest not that any man should ask thee: by this we believe that thou camest forth from God’, John 16:29,30. ‘Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life; and we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God’, John 6:68,69.
Wisdom’s cry of Proverbs 8:10, ‘Receive my instruction’, is surely Jesus’ ‘learn of me’, Matt. 11:28-30. He says further, ‘Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom: I am understanding; I have strength’, verse 14. He is understanding! Again, ‘Riches and honour are with me; yea, durable riches and righteousness. My fruit is better than gold, yea, than fine gold; and my revenue than choice silver’, verses 18,19. Compare those words with Matthew 13:44-46: ‘Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all he had, and bought it.’ And who is King in the kingdom of heaven?
Christ is, furthermore, the only one who leads in the way of righteousness, and in the midst of the paths of judgment – sober reasoning from a sound mind, verse 20; cp. 2 Tim. 1:7; as David had said of his shepherd: ‘He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake’, Psalm 23:3. And the apostles’ doctrine is full of the inheritance which Wisdom speaks of in Proverbs 8:21: ‘That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures.’ Yea, this is ‘the inheritance of the saints in light’; that ‘inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God…’, which is the doctrine of Christ: the gospel; see Col. 1:9-17, 1 Peter 1:3-9.
Is the reader rejoicing with me over Christ our wisdom?
But whence the origin of Wisdom – of Christ? Proverbs 8:22 and following answer: ‘The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old.’ But when was ‘the beginning’ of the way of the LORD? Surely he is the eternal one? Verse 23-26: ‘I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was…’ ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God’, John 1:1,2. Clear enough?
He says in verse 27, ‘I was there’ when ‘God created the heaven and the earth… the sea, and all that in them is’, Gen. 1:1, Ex. 20:11. So Paul could write of the Son: ‘For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones [‘by me kings reign…’ Prov. 8:15,16], or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him and for him: and he is before all things, and by him all things consist’, Col. 1:16,17. It is no wonder then that heaven resounds with his praise: ‘Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created’, Rev. 4:8-11. By the way; if Christ was there at the beginning and created all things, then it obviously follows that he is uncreated himself.
Wisdom then says of the LORD, verse 30: ‘I was daily his delight’: ‘This is my beloved Son, in whom – not just with whom, but ‘in’ whom – I am well pleased’, Matt. 17:5: the very Person of the Son – ‘I’ – was the Father’s delight. And Christ was ‘rejoicing always before him’: ‘Then said I, Lo, in the volume of the book it is written of me. I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart…’ Psalm 40:7-11; ‘…I do always those things that please [the Father]’, John 8:29.
Moreover, he says that he is ‘rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth’, Prov. 8:31; and where is that? In church or chapel on a Sunday morning? No. No. A million times, No. ‘Where is the house that ye build unto me? And where is the place of my rest?’ Isa. 66:1; for you can be sure that he ‘dwelleth not in temples made with hands’, Acts 7:48, 17:24. The habitable part of the earth? ‘That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith’, Eph. 3:17; yea, ‘my delights are with the sons of men’; after all, children of God, ‘Ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them: and I will be their God, and they shall be my people’, 2 Cor. 6:16. And it is there, and there alone, that ‘I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church – the gathered company of the out-called – will I sing praise unto thee’, Heb. 2:12. Wherefore, come out from among all those in whom he does not dwell; for what does the world, and worldly churches, know of this Wisdom.
‘Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways. Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not. Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. For whoso findeth me findeth life – LIFE! – and shall obtain favour of the LORD. But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death’, Prov. 8:32-36. ‘And it came to pass, when Wisdom had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.’
And then we move into Proverbs chapter nine; where immediately we find Christ and his church: ‘Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out seven pillars’, verse 1. The church of the living God is the pillar and ground of the truth’, 1 Tim. 3:15. Yes, it is Wisdom, not men, who builds the one true church; and the seven pillars are the apostles’ doctrine – the doctrine of Christ. And what is that? Verse 2: ‘She hath killed her beasts; she hath mingled her wine; she hath also furnished her table.’ What is this but the work of Christ upon the cross with its fruit? He came to fulfil the law and the prophets. Both it and they foreshadowed in type and spoke of the one sacrifice which was to be made. All those offerings for sin given under the law pointed to ‘the Lamb of God’: ‘…but now once in the end of the [old testament dispensation] hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself’, Heb. 9:26; ‘…the cup which my Father giveth me, shall I not drink it?’ John 18:11; wine mingled with gall: the wine of the wrath of the Almighty poured into his soul as it was made an offering for sin, Isa. 53:10.
And when he had finished the work which the Father had given him to do, then, what a table was prepared and furnished for the people of God! All the blessings that result from the Lamb slain are freely theirs: Salvation; redemption; justification; reconciliation; forgiveness; sin put away; sins borne away; peace with God; resurrection from the dead; the law answered; all enemies overcome in the death, burial, resurrection, ascension, sprinkling of the blood on the heavenly mercy seat, and seating of Christ on the right hand of God. And from thence the giving of the Spirit to apply the work in his people. What a table!
But then Wisdom, by the Spirit, ‘sends forth her maidens’, Prov. 9:3. These are they whom Christ calls and sends with a heavenly calling to preach by revelation this wonderful gospel – the ‘good message’ of his salvation – in the power of the Spirit (please find me one of these ministers today). And Wisdom through them ‘crieth upon the highest places of the city, Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth – lacketh – understanding, she saith to him, Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled. Forsake the foolish, and live – LIVE! – and go in the way of understanding’, verses 3-6. Could there be a passage of scripture more furnished with gospel language? Cp. John 6:48-66, for example: to be considered later.
Are you ‘simple’, reader? Are you ‘as a little child’? ‘Come. Come. For all things are now ready’. ‘Come.’ ‘Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money – no works of righteousness – come ye, buy, and eat; come, buy wine and milk without money and without price’ – free, ‘priceless’ salvation! ‘…when they had nothing to pay…’ ‘Eat of my flesh and drink of my blood’ by faith; and in so doing, forsake the foolish (the simple foolish of Proverbs 1) – those with no need of Christ – and live: remember? ‘Whoso findeth me findeth life’. ‘Verily, verily, Wisdom saith unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life’, John 6:47; and, ‘He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life’, John 5:24. And therefore they ‘go in the way of understanding’, Prov. 9:6. ‘Ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things. I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth’, 1 John 2:20,21. Thus, ‘Follow me… Come after me… Take my yoke upon you and learn of me… hear my voice and follow me.’ This is a narrow way – Wisdom’s way; but it is the way which leadeth unto life… the only way; and it is also called ‘applying our hearts unto wisdom’.