(The following contains deep Spiritual Truth. Only Believers and Followers of Jesus need to proceed)
CRITICAL SHORTAGE OF WISDOM
The mission of The Whitestone Fellowship Rev2:17 is to “Inform, Inspire, Influence, Ignite”. The idea behind our mission is to LEARN and APPLY. The converse is that “Un-applied knowledge is just useless information”.
So, then, what is wisdom?
One source defines it this way, “There is a very clear difference between knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge is merely “knowing”, learning, or understanding facts as they pertain to certain situations. Wisdom, on the other hand, is the ability to apply that knowledge to given situations.”
There seems to be a critical lack of wisdom in our world, and it seems to be getting worse.
The Bible uses the word “Wisdom” over 200 times. Here are just a few of examples of how the Bible defines “wisdom”:
Exodus 35:31 “And He has filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding and in knowledge and in all craftsmanship”
Psalms 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments; His praise endures forever.”
Ecclesiastes 7:19 Wisdom strengthens a wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.”
Many of us hear lectures and sermons in Church, on TV, the radio or the internet, that impart valuable information and knowledge. But often, the message is delivered in such a way that the application is either weak, missing or is superficial.
What I mean by this is that many Bible-based sermons start with information about a Bible ‘story’ (hearing), then tend to give a third-person view of the information (observation), then tends to end with a “motto” or a “moral” (the close) instead of clear instruction on how to use or apply what the Bible teaching.
The goal of preaching the Bible is to
- Inform in order to teach,
- Inspire a person to learn what he or she has heard,
- Influence that person to become a source of the truth, and
- Ignite the person to continuous action.
Here is an example from John chapter 15
Abiding in Christ, The Vine:
John 15:1 says, “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vine dresser. Verse 2. “Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit. Verse 3. “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Verse 4. “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. Verse 5. “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. Verse 6. “If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. Verse 7. “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. Verse 8. “My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.”
There is much to say, to teach and to preach from this section of Scripture. But, I want us to focus on learning and using word. Let’s start with the “WORD”.
This teaching is by Jesus and is obviously “inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness”. In other words, YOU CAN and MUST USE IT.
John 15:3, says, “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.“
John 15:7, instructs, “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”
1. INFORM – TO TEACH: This “WORD” is from the Greek word, “Logos”. It is the sayings of God, a decree, mandate or order, the moral precepts given by God. It is prophecy given by the prophets which denotes the essential Word of God, Jesus Christ. His personal wisdom and power in union with God, in creation and government of the universe, the cause of all the world’s life both physical and ethical, which for the procurement of man’s salvation put on human nature in the person of Jesus the Messiah shone forth conspicuously from His words and deeds.
2. INSPIRE – TO LEARN: “You are already clean because of the WORD”. “Clean” comes from the Greek word, “katharos” which means you are already made clean, pure as if you have been purified by fire (cauterized). Likewise, a vine is cleansed by pruning and so fitted to bear fruit.
Because of this WORD, you are made ethically clean, free from corrupt desire, from sin and guilt, free from every admixture of what is false. The embracing and consumption of Word makes you sincere genuine, blameless, innocent, unstained with the guilt of anything.
3. INFLUENCE – TO BECOME A SOURCE OF TRUTH: “because of the word which I have spoken to you”. This WORD is from God and is both PROPHETIC and CAUSATIVE. God foretells, proclaims and creates the Truth IN YOU and THROUGH YOU! This is the Work of God through you! Embrace it and let the WORD OF GOD abide in you.
4. IGNITE – ACT CONTINUOUSLY: “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”
This time, “WORD” is from the Greek “Rhema” which means, that which is or has been uttered by the living voice, a thing spoken, a spoken word.
We are taught, and we learn, we are informed and inspired as the Living Logos of God abides within us. Now that WORD wells up inside us and spills out of our mouth as the Rhema, the Spoken Word of God. We are but the clay and the Potter is announcing the most profound Truths through His willing and submitted servant.
ABIDE. This is critical. It is essential to “Abide in Christ”. It is to remain, to sojourn, tarry, not to depart, to continue to be present, to be held, kept, continually, to remain as one, not to become another or different. This is the only way.
ABIDE: This is critical. It is essential that His Words abide in you. His WORD is to remain IN YOU, to sojourn IN YOU, tarry IN YOU, not to depart FROM YOU, to continue to be present IN YOU, to be held IN YOUR MIND AND HEART, kept IN YOUR MIND AND HEART continually, to remain as one, not to become another or different. This is the only way.
ASK: “Ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.”
“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise from another place, and you and your house will perish. And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?”.
Don’t shrink back. Accurately handle the Word of God. ASK, SEEK, KNOCK and Let’s GO and get allow Him to get this done!
Your Brother and Friend,
ADDITIONAL READING: “For Such A Time As This“ by Dr. Tony Evans, senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, TX. (reprinted below).
(Then Mordecai told them to reply to Esther, “Do not imagine that you in the king’s palace can escape any more than all the Jews. For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, and you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?”). – Esther 4:13-14
Many people quote Mordecai’s rebuke to Esther as a life-verse which is to represent prestige, power and favor. You’ll see shirts, hats, mugs and social media posts that proudly ring out, “for such a time as this.”
But few people truly connect the context of the verse with how they are using it. Esther was being scolded for her self-indulgent, self-preserving mindset. Esther was being reproofed for living large and embracing royalty over service. Through those telling words, Mordecai was reminding Esther that she had been chosen to set her own interests aside, let go of her own ambitions and face an enemy full-on.
She was to risk her life and her legacy with no guarantees of a positive outcome. That’s the “for such a time as this” Esther was challenged to accept. And that’s the “for such a time as this” God also sets before you.
He didn’t place you where you are so you could eat figs all day long or post pictures of yourself on social media.
It is God who has given you your job, position, resources, education and more. It is God who has opened the opportunities for you to optimize for His kingdom purposes. He didn’t place you where you are so you could eat figs all day long or post pictures of yourself on social media. He’s placed you where you are because you are in the midst of a battle; a war. You are in the midst of a seismic conflict involving Good versus Evil.
To miss your kingdom assignment because you have become too caught up in your personal kingdom itself is the greatest tragedy you could ever face.
To miss your kingdom assignment because you have become too caught up in your personal kingdom itself is the greatest tragedy you could ever face. An entire nation was grateful for how Esther responded to Mordecai’s rebuke. Their lives were spared. How many can be spared in the culture where we live today when we choose to step up to service, even if it involves sacrifice?