Community Bible Chapel
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
A place to grow.... where everybody is somebody and Jesus Christ is Lord.
 8/13/17  Wise Up! – Navigating in a Complicated World
Discovering The Full Riches Of Wisdom
 

After fighting for South American independence, Scottish soldier and adventurer

 Gregor MacGregor returned to England, pretending to be cazique of "Poyais," a

 totally made-up Island nation off the coast of Honduras. He even created a guidebook detailing the landscape and abundant natural resources. He collected money from over 250 would-be colonists, and by the time his investors reached the patch of water where their island should have been, he was already rounding up more money from potential colonists in France.

There are as many get rich quick schemes as there are people.

-We all have them!

-That’s why the lottery is so popular.

Image result for pictures of smaug on his treasure-Most of the “get rich quick” schemes play off our desire to “get rich quick”.

 -Ah, a perfect match.

When you think of treasure, what do you think of?

          -Gold and silver come quickly to mind, maybe a 401 account invested for your

 future security, or wonderful memories of your past.

But Jesus challenges us with a different treasure.

Mark 10:21  To the rich ruler, Jesus said  “One thing you lack,  go, sell everything

you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven.”

Matt.6:19-21  “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and

vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for

yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.  For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

          -Jesus is pushing us to lift our desires above this world.

Have you ever stopped to consider what God treasures?

          -Does He treasure gold or exotic food or the stars He created?

          Psalms 135:4 tells us

 “For the Lord has chosen Jacob to be his own,

Israel to be his treasured possession.

          -What is it that God treasures?

          -He treasures His people!

          -He treasures you – He treasures relationship with His people!

Now, we have been slowly working our way through the beginning of Proverbs.

          -We have spent a lot of time looking at wisdom and how important it is to pursue

                   God’s wisdom that comes through our relationship with Him.

I invite you to join me in Proverbs 3.

          -As you turn there, understand that there is a key unlocking this treasure

of wisdom. 

-Is 33:5-6  “The Lord is exalted, for he dwells on high;

He will fill Zion with his justice and righteousness.
He will be the sure foundation for your times,
    a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge;
    the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure.”

-Today, we are going to open up the treasure chest and dip our toe into

the riches of God’s wisdom that is opened to us in this rich passage.

           
READ Proverbs 3:1-10

X The wise Trust In The Lord v. 1-10

       -There are 5 ways the wise trust in the Lord in this passage, and each comes with

a blessing.

       X 1. Do not forget the teaching of God’s Word v. 1

          -David said in Psalm 119 “I have hidden your Word in my heart”

          -There is this active process of remembering the teaching of God’s Word

                   by memorization, meditation, and application.

          -We tend to remember what is important to us.

                   -I might forget what my homework is, but I never once forgot when

my baseball game was.

          -How do we make God’s Word important to us so we remember it?

          Ps. 34:8  “Taste and see that the Lord is good”

          -We often complain that God doesn’t answer our prayers, but often times,

 God has already given us the answer to our prayers in His Word.

-As we follow God’s Word, He generally blesses that worship.

-Now, that doesn’t mean that we will live to be 100 or will be rewarded with gold,

          but we “taste and see” God’s goodness over time.

      X  2. Love and Faithfulness v. 3

          -I John 3:16 

“This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.”

          -The wise follow the love of Christ, not as an emotion, but as an action.

                   -Doing what is best for the other person, no matter the cost to me.

          -Because you are loved by God and treasured by Him, we love Him

                   and seek to glorify Him in all we do.

          -The result of that helps us become more like Jesus, who gained in

 “favor with God and man”

     X  3. Trust in the Lord whole heartedlyv. 5

          -Specifically, the passage challenges our “understanding” or thinking.

          -As Paul Tripp recently said in NMM – “we think we are smarter than God”

                    -The wise trust in the Lord by not spending more than they make.

                    -The wise trust in the Lord by loving their wives and respecting their

 husbands, even when they don’t deserve it.

                    -The wise trust in the Lord by obeying their parents even when they

can’t see that their parents have any wisdom at all.

                    -In a million ways we trust in the Lord all day - every day.

          -Trusting the Lord also challenges our emotions – feelings.

          -Many people make most of the decisions in their lives based on their feelings

 rather than the revealed Word of God.

          - And all the time the world tells us to follow what?         YOUR HEART

          -God’s Word warns us in Prov. 14:12

  “there is a way that seems right to a man, but it’s end is the way of death.”

          -Prov. 28:26 in the ASB  “He who trusts in his own heart is a fool”     

          -That’s because our hearts fluctuate all over the place.

          -God doesn’t change, “He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow”

-Logic even tells us that if we follow His sufficient Word,

He will make our path straight.

      X 4.  Have a humble heart v. 7

       -Rather than being wise in their own eyes, the wise understand that their thinking

 is tainted by sin and that they need God’s help to navigate through life.

          -A humble heart is teachable and is continually seeking God’s wisdom in Christ.

          -It’s a heart that is growing in its hatred of evil and growing in its love

of Christ’s righteousness.

          -The humble heart seeks God for all things because it knows we can’t do anything.

    X 5.  Understand Stewardship v. 9

       -The wise know that they own nothing and that God has graciously given

them anything they have.

          -So they honor God with the first fruits of their labor, not what is left over.

          -The motive in our giving is two-fold.

1.  Wisdom gives in thanksgiving.

          -Gratitude for God’s abundant blessing.

2.  Wisdom gives in faith.

          -Trusting that God will provide.

          -Together, those display our worship of God.

          -And I want to love on you today.

-Many of you are missing the blessing of God because you are not

honoring God in your giving.

          -We are called to live by faith and invest in the eternal kingdom of God.

Now, the first part of the passage deals with our love and worship of God.

-Five ways the wise trust in the Lord.
 
 READ 11-20

X  The wise learn from God’s discipline and find life v. 11-20

          -Many people think of God’s discipline as punishment.

                    -They consider every hardship in life as God punishing them

for wrongdoing.

                    -If the car doesn’t start is must be because God is punishing me for

                             my lustful thoughts from yesterday.

                   -Jesus came to destroy that kind of thinking!

                   -I think much of this Theology comes from parents who disciplined their

 children to punish them for wrongdoing.

                   -Causing further separation in the family.

-Now, many of you are wondering what kind of parenting heresy PJ is teaching!

          -But such Theology is not Biblical and misses the Gospel completely.

          -Jesus already took the punishment that our sin deserves.

          -In Him we have no guilt and shame, there is no punishment we have to go through.

     -So what about this passage that says that God disciplines us?

          -Where God does not discipline us as punishment, He does discipline us to

 correct us . . . and I like to use the term restorative.

                   -As a father, my goal was to use discipline to restore my children back into

 fellowship with God and with the family.

                   -Their sin separated them from God and from their brother

 or whoever they sinned against.

                   -I don’t want my kids wandering around in the danger of being separated in

 their relationship with God, nor do I want them wandering outside

of God’s provision of the family.

                   -My goal was to restore them as quickly as possible so they could

 enjoy the blessings of God ‘s best and those provided as

part of the family.

          -As children learn the loving – restorative discipline of their parents they grow to

 understand the loving - restorative discipline of God as they get older.

          -God does not discipline to remove us from His presence, we do that well enough

on our own, He disciplines to bring us closer to Him – to restore us.

          -Aren’t you glad that God doesn’t write us off when we sin.

          -This passage is teaching us that the wise learn to thank God

 for his loving discipline.
Now, I love the rest of this passage. v. 14-18.

          -Notice the fact that the Holy Spirit, writing through Solomon                             

 refers to wisdom as “she”.

          -Genesis 3 says “when the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food

and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom,  

she took some and ate.”

-Could it be that she failed in each of the five things we just studied?

          -She forgot God’s teaching.

          -She allowed love and faithfulness leave her.

          -She didn’t trust in the Lord.

          -She became wise in her own eyes.

          -She didn’t honor the Lord.

-Eve spurned God’s wisdom and sought wisdom from another source.

-And I love this correction in the Biblical narrative in reference toward women,

as Solomon re-writes the story.

          -Not wise in her own right, but wise as she trusts in the Lord.

-Look at the attractive imagery in this passage.

                   -All the things we might treasure are there.

                   -v. 15 - Wealth is pictured in precious metals and gems.

                   -v. 14 - Productive work is there in yielding better return than gold

                   -v. 16 - Long life is in her hands.

                   -v. 17 - Peace and pleasure are pictured in her.

                   -v. 18 – Security is pictured in embracing her.

                   -v. 18 – Where Eve sought wisdom from outside of God and lost access to

 the “tree”, this woman – “wisdom” re-gains access to eternal life.

-We could say:  Wisdom is portrayed as she should be.

          -So many people reject God because they think they will have to give up all the fun

 stuff of life, but in reality, the best stuff is the blessing of God.

          -Sadly, as they reject God, they are giving up far more than they

could ever imagine.

 

READ v. 21-35

X  The wise love others because they are loved by God  v. 21-35

          -And as Jesus pointed out, where the chapter begins with learning to trust God

by loving Him, the passage ends with 5 commands to love our neighbor.

          -They are all in the negative – “do not . . .”

     X  1.  Do not withhold what is owed v. 27

          -This seems to refer to a debt you own or someone you hire.

                   -Pay them today and make good on the promise you made to pay them back

or to hire them.

          -By giving what is owed, we reflect God’s hand as he gives each person what

their deeds deserve.

   X 2. Do not withhold good v. 28

-This refers to helping someone who is in need – if you have been blessed

by God and are able to help, then do so.

       -By doing good right away, you reflect God’s goodness in the Gospel,

that was given ahead of your need.

          -Go out of your way to do good to reflect well on God’s goodness.

 
 
   X 3. Do no plot harmv. 29

       -This person lives next to you in a trust worthy way and you return their trust

                   by plotting to harm them in any way.

          -Instead we should plot or consider how to do good things for our neighbor.

          -By plotting to do good, we reflect God’s glory as He plans good for us.

   X 4.Do no accuse another for no reason v. 30

          -This person has done you good, yet you accuse them of wrong-doing.

          -David protected the lands and flocks of Laban,

yet Laban accused him of wrongdoing.

          -In that case as in ours, our desires get upside-down.

-We envy that someone else got recognized for doing something good.

-We desire what someone else has.

          -Instead, we should rejoice in God’s goodness to another person. 

          -Send them a card of how much you appreciate them and reflect God’s acceptance.

   X 5. Do not envy a violent person v. 31

          -Psalm 73 pictures this well.

          -We can be tempted to envy what others have and even begin to be angry with God

for not giving us what we think our righteousness deserves.

          -But that is a false sense of deservedness and misses God’s mercy in not giving us

 what our sin deserves.

          -When we remember the grace we have in Christ to give us what we don’t deserve,

                   we no longer envy because we know what the wicked have actually earned

 in their sin as v. 32-34 clearly explains.
 

X  Wise Up! 

Proverbs 3 moves us to trust God, and in His trust-worthiness, He transforms

us to love Him and love others.

          -The part that we play in the growth process is to follow this chapter.

-Striving to allow God’s discipline in our life to move us from being “wise in our

own eyes” and grasping after wisdom outside of God’s Word,

and learning to trust God and His Word more and more.

          -Not with the motive of being blessed, but just so that we will love God more.

                   -One of the dangers of reading this passage is placing a heavy focus on

                             the blessings received for trusting God in these ways.

                             -Thinking that if I obey, God is obligated to bless me.

                   -But in that very thinking, we deceive ourselves and miss God’s blessing.

          -God wants us to live for Him and love Him by faith.

          -And the blessing of God’s wisdom comes in relationship with Him that is found

 only in Jesus Christ.
So, we started by talking about treasure.

-What do you treasure?  

                   -Is it in getting your way?

                   -Is it in getting what you want?

                   -Is it in a happy home or work place?

                   -Is it when you team wins?

-Is it when the kids are obeying and doing well?

-When you are getting these things  - life is good,

but then they disappear – life is not good.

-That tells us that our treasure is in the wrong thing.

Proverbs 3 helps us catch a glimpse of what God treasures.

          -The beauty of this passage pushes us to consider our hearts

 and what motivates us.

          -As we work to apply this passage, we have to consider our treasure.

-If God is our greatest and only treasure, then we will be doing the things

the passage speaks of, and not doing them in order to gain God’s blessing,

          but doing them because we treasure God.

-The blessing is a by-product of our love for God, not the focus.

 

So, this week, evaluate your treasure by these things.

    -Make a list of all the ways you . . .

          1.  Remember God’s teaching in His Word

          2.  Love Him in faithful obedience

          3  Trust in Him whole heartedly – “not my will, but yours be done”

          4.  Humble before Him

          5.  Honor Him in your giving.

          1.  Keep your word and follow through on your promises

2.  Generous to others.

          3.  Spend time considering how to do good  - go out of your way.

          4.  Appreciate others

          5.  Content with what God has provided for you.

 -As you list things in each area – pick an area where the list is short,

and develop some ways to increase it.

-Seek His wisdom and help, and strength, and courage that you might

                             grow in that area – all for His great glory.

 

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