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Monday, May 19, 2008

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James 3:13-18
Psalm 19
Mark 9:14-29

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wisdom teeth

"Wisdom like this does not come from above. It is earthbound." —James 3:15

Many people pay tens of thousands of dollars to graduate from college. Others pay thousands of dollars to receive counseling from a psychiatrist. Millions of people listen to or watch talk-show personalities. All of these people are looking for wisdom.

However, there are two kinds of wisdom. There is heavenly wisdom and "earthbound" wisdom (Jas 3:15). Earthbound wisdom is "a kind of animal, even devilish, cunning. Where there are jealousy and strife, there also are inconstancy and all kinds of vile behavior. Wisdom from above, by contrast, is first of all innocent. It is also peaceable, lenient, docile, rich in sympathy and the kindly deeds that are its fruits, impartial and sincere" (Jas 3:15-17). Heavenly wisdom is shown "in practice through a humility filled with good sense" (Jas 3:13), while earthbound wisdom foments "bitter jealousy and selfish ambition" (Jas 3:14), and "arrogant and false claims against the truth" (Jas 3:14).

By these Biblical standards, almost all talk-shows must be rejected. The book of James seems to indicate that "higher education" is "lower," earthbound, and not wise at all. The teaching in James declares much counseling to be suspect.

Seek heavenly wisdom. Reject earthbound wisdom. Be happy. Be free. Live for Jesus. He is our Wisdom (1 Cor 1:30).

Prayer:  Father, may I realize that the absurdity of the preaching of the cross is power and wisdom (1 Cor 1:24).

Promise:  "His disciples began to ask Him privately, 'Why is it that we could not expel it?' He told them, 'This kind you can drive out only by prayer.' " —Mk 9:28-29

Praise:  By studying Scripture prayerfully Thomas wields the word of God more effectively.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape Wisdom Literature on audio AV 10B-3 or video V-10B.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 23, 2007

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