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Where Wisdom Begins

Where Wisdom Begins


28 July 2010

Wisdom without learning is better than learning without wisdom.

- Colman mac Beognai, Aipgitir Chrabaid (Irish, 7th century)

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practiceit have a good understanding.

- Psalm 111.10

I'm reading a most interesting book about wisdom. The author is not quite sure what it is or how we acquire it, but he's searching eagerly. A materialist, one who does not believe in spiritual realities, the author is convinced that the beginning of wisdom is in brain activity - prompted by external stimuli which provoke chemical and electrical responses leading to what looks like it might be wise action. Or something like that.

The author not only does not believe in God, the spiritual realm, or the soul, he has convinced himself there's no such thing as free will, either. We are all just responders to whatever happens around us, building up repertoires of behavior that work to get us what we want without totally upsetting the world around us.

So the beginning of wisdom is in the random movements of matter. And this, we're supposed to believe, is science? This is knowledge? This sounds more like an act of faith to me, and one that considers 4,000 years of teaching and exemplary living, grounded in the idea that the beginning of wisdom is the fear of God, is an explanation that can simply be dismissed as untrue, unreliable, and unscientific.

And why? Because once you allow God into the equation you have to make room for all the moral baggage He brings with Him. People prefer to believe their own half-baked and barely credible accounts for such things as wisdom than what has been believed and lived for milenia, because then they're free to pipe their own moral tunes.

But then, we do the same, don't we, whenever we hear God speaking in His Word and decide we don't have to listen. For example, when He says, "You shall be holy." Or "You shall be my witnesses." How wise is that?

July Exercise Part 4: For the rest of this month let's work on developing a plan, following the free the brochure, Called to Be Witnesses and the My Personal Mission Field brochure, for pondering our paths more purposefully, and with greater Kingdom results.

Today in ReVision: On Being Still - Is this even possible?

Also at the website, we have begun our next Kingdom Civics series on the "Founding Documents" of the Kingdom, and Every Thought Captive Satan, Bound (soon to be a Waxed Tablet book!). features the next installment of

This Month's Download: Called to Be Witnesses - Give a copy to your friends and begin talking together about how you can become more serious about piety.

We hope you'll visit our book store and check out the resources available to help you live the Christian life. And let us hear from you.

T. M. Moore, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
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