Wise or Foolish?

James 3:13 ESV

Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom.

Wisdom includes knowledge, but knowledge alone is not wisdom. For, many people have lots of knowledge, including biblical knowledge, but they are not wise, because they don’t apply the good knowledge that they have to their hearts and to their lifestyles. It remains in their heads only.

So, if we are wise, we are those who put into practice the good that we know to do. We don’t just talk about doing it, and we don’t just tell others they should do it, but we do it ourselves. This is not saying we do it perfectly, but that we are applying the Word of God to our lives in our daily practices in the power and strength of God’s Spirit now living within us.

But, for us to apply the knowledge of scriptures to the practice of our daily lives, we have to know what the scriptures teach, so we need to be gaining understanding (perception, insight) into the Word of God, which we are able to do only in the power of God’s Spirit, and as we bathe our minds and hearts on the Word of God on a daily basis.

Then, as the Lord teaches us the truths of his Word, and as we apply those truths to our daily walks with him, in his power and wisdom, our conduct will reflect that, for it will be good conduct, not evil, and daily we will be progressing in our walks of faith, not continually going backwards and recycling the same sinful patterns of behavior over and over again.

James 3:14-16 ESV

But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.

Many people remain in sinful addiction due to bitterness in their hearts towards God and towards other humans, and due to pride and selfish ambition. Since they won’t deal with what is in their hearts, and they won’t let go of their pride or their bitterness, and they still maintain control over their own lives, they are not usually successful in controlling the appetites (lusts, desires, passions) of their flesh, but they tend to repeat the same patterns of behavior continually.

Those who are living in sinful addiction, who are regularly engaged in sinful practices, and who make a practice of lying about their sins to disguise them, tend to follow similar patterns of behavior. For instance, they will typically avoid direct eye contact with those from whom they are hiding their sins, or if they do make eye contact, they will do it in a way that masks what lies underneath, either through joking or pretending everything is ok when it isn’t. They are usually very good at acting (performing, disguising).

Their emotions may sometimes be exaggerated, like they are performing for an audience to leave a particular impression, or they may appear emotionless, mechanical even, in order to hide the anger and bitterness stored up inside them. Their responses to situations usually follow a particular pattern and can be rather automatic in an unfeeling kind of way. Their body language and the looks in their eyes and in their faces, i.e. in their countenance, usually follow predictive and repetitive patterns, too.

They are generally self-consumed and will talk about themselves a lot. Now, there is nothing wrong in talking about what is going on in our lives with others, and sharing our experiences, but our conversations should not always be centered around self, but they should show interest in others and in what is going on in their lives, i.e. there should be a somewhat even exchange of thoughts, ideas and subject matter. No one should always control the conversations, but some people do this regularly.

People who are living in sinful addiction, too, are usually resistant to change unless they are the ones controlling the situation and are able to pick and choose what they are willing to change and what they are not willing to change. For, it is all about control. And, in order to keep others from learning the truth about them, they will devise all sorts of tricks for how to disguise what they are doing and to call it something else.

Because they are living in addiction, they will console themselves in their sin, too, making excuses for why it is ok for them to medicate themselves with whatever form of addiction is their thing. In their anger and bitterness, thus, they will justify their actions as something they deserve because so and so or God is not doing what they want, or not fast enough to suit them, and so they take matters into their own hands. And, they will minimize their sin and call it something other than what it is in order to justify it.

And, if someone gets close to finding out what they are doing, or inquires about what they are doing, or makes helpful suggestions, sometimes the addicted will fight back with hate and spite and cutting remarks in order to shut the person up. And, this isn’t all on the defensive, either. Sometimes they will go on the offensive, and they will gossip about and slander those they deem a threat to their secretive lifestyles in order to destroy them and to willfully injure them and to deflect from themselves, too.

And, this is because their thinking is not godly, but it is mixed with the world, and their appetites are twisted, dishonest and corrupt. And, so they oftentimes bite (wound, injure) with spite and malice those who would try to help them. And, they misrepresent and distort what is really going on in their lives and in their minds and hearts in order to ward off suspicion of what they are really doing.

And, they will also try to trip up and falsely accuse those who are proclaiming the truth of God’s Word because the truth exposes their lies and their hypocrisies, and it brings out the truth about sin and judgment, and so they console themselves with lies which make them feel better about themselves while they continue to engage in their sinful practices. So, they are usually ones who embrace the cheap grace gospel, while they may also put on a show of fake righteousness to try to fool people, too.

James 3:17-18 ESV

But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

But, God’s wisdom, his love, and his grace provided a way out for us from underneath the control of Satan and sin so that we can be delivered from our slavery (addiction) to sin, and so that we can walk (live) righteously before our God, living to please him in all ways.

Jesus (God the Son), who became flesh for us, was put to death on a cross. In his death he put our sin to death so that we can die with him to sin and live with him to righteousness. He made the way for us to come to the cross, to turn away from our sinful lifestyles, and to now walk in his love and grace, and in purity and holiness.

The wisdom which consoles us in our sins, and which makes excuses and justifications for sin, and which puts a Band-Aid over our serious wounds so that they are never healed, and which tells us our sin no longer matters to God, is going to send many people straight to hell while promising them heaven as their eternal reward.

But, the wisdom from above says to get rid of all that refuse in our lives and to allow the Spirit of God to cleanse us and to make us new creations in Christ Jesus, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. And, it says to surrender to Jesus Christ, and to forgive, and to let go of all bitterness and selfish ambition and malice, and to put on God’s love.

So, don’t believe the lies which console you in your sin. Don’t hide the truth from those who you are obligated to tell the truth to. Be honest. Let go of the bitterness which rages within your hearts. And, let God’s grace and love fill your hearts to overflowing. And, put on Christ and his purity, and remove from your lives all which is hindering your walks of faith with Christ. And, practice love, not hate, and make no more excuses for sin, but walk in victory over darkness in the power and wisdom and kindness of God.

For Our Nation

An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

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