Christian Living
Natural and Worldly Wisdom
Michael Youssef, Ph.D.
Apr 22, 2018

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Knowledge and wisdom are closely related, but there is a difference. Knowledge is the storing up of information, and wisdom is the ability to apply the right information in a given situation. From a worldly perspective, knowledge helps you make a living, but wisdom makes a life. Our world is overflowing with knowledge, but we are bankrupt of wisdom. The need for wisdom today makes this gift valuable to the body of Christ.

In Colossians 1:9, Paul prays, "For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives." Clearly, this desirable gift is an area where all believers should be filled and continue to grow.

Our world is overflowing with knowledge, but we are bankrupt of wisdom.

To fully understand this gift of God's wisdom for living, Christians need to compare it to natural wisdom and worldly wisdom. Natural wisdom is comprised of our intellectual capacity and experience and is the fruit of earthly reasoning. It is technical in nature. Natural wisdom offers man's best answer to a question or problem.

Worldly wisdom is what deceived Adam and Eve in the Garden. This type of wisdom rationalizes sin and separates us from God. It can even make people feel they are godlike themselves. When a person is so convinced of the superiority of his own wisdom and knowledge, he may deny God and be kept from salvation. God has declared war on this type of wisdom.

1 Corinthians 1:19 states, "For it is written: ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.'" God has been removed from public life in our nation due to this prideful, worldly form of wisdom.

Prayer: God, help me to recognize the different types of wisdom. Forgive me for the times I have pursued prideful, worldly wisdom rather than Your perfect, wise will. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

"Where is the wise person? Where is the teacher of the law? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?" (1 Corinthians 1:20).