Posted 08 Jan 2013
Proverbs 2:1-11 (NLT)
1 My child, listen to what I say, and treasure my commands.
2 Tune your ears to wisdom, and concentrate on understanding.
3 Cry out for insight, and ask for understanding.
4 Search for them as you would for silver; seek them like hidden treasures.
5 Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and you will gain knowledge of God.
6 For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
7 He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest. He is a shield to those who walk with integrity.
8 He guards the paths of the just and protects those who are faithful to him.
9 Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will find the right way to go.
10 For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy.
11 Wise choices will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe.
Verse 2, concentrate on understanding. To do that is to use our effort; to be determined.
Verse 4, If you had lost a bag of silver you wouldn’t search casually & then shrug if you didn’t find it! You’d search diligently, scrabbling around in the dirt until you found it! If you were seeking hidden treasure, you wouldn’t search half-heartedly & give up after 5 minutes… or, if you did, you certainly wouldn’t find very much!
Think about archeologists or treasure-seekers on a dig; they painstakingly & carefully excavate the soil, until they find the artifacts or treasure they are looking for. If they randomly dug a few spadefuls of soil & then declared the site empty, we’d think them mad! It takes effort, perseverance, hope, determination & a whole spadeful (pun intended!) of time to uncover what they are seeking.
In the same way, the writer of Proverbs is saying that we should diligently, deliberately dig into the Holy Bible to uncover its treasure of wisdom. By the grace of God, some wisdom in the Bible is easy to find; we all know the verses which are often quoted & which we all agree are useful, helpful & inspiring. These are great, & may be thought of as treasure on, or just below the ‘surface’ of the Bible. These nuggets of wisdom are easy to find. But I suspect that there is a whole treasure trove of golden nuggets of wisdom & understanding, insight & revelation, just waiting for us to discover it. Such treasure is a little deeper inside the Bible, maybe a bit less obvious, maybe requiring a bit more perseverance in ‘digging’ it out. But I reckon it’s there to be discovered! And I believe God wants His people to be a bit more diligent & determined to ‘dig for victory’.
I think God wants to encourage us to have the same dedication & thorough determination of the best archeologist or treasure-seeker, in that we should ‘stick to the dig’ & meticulously carry on digging into the Holy Bible, until we have found the treasure God wants us to find. Casual page-flicking won’t cut it here! I think there is a vast wealth of treasure, just waiting to be discovered, but we do need determination & time to uncover it. I think God is eagerly waiting to show us all the vast & rich treasures He has in store for us. Imagine Him hopping from foot to foot in eager anticipation of showing us the treasures He has for us!
Will you join me in that dig?
What are the benefits of finding the treasure of the Bible?
Verses 5-11 begin to outline the benefits of searching, & finding, the treasure:
1) Verse 5 reads, ‘Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and you will gain knowledge of God.’
Awe of God & knowledge of God.
2) Verse 7 reads, ‘He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest. He is a shield to those who walk with integrity.’
Treasure of common sense.
3) Verses 8 & 9 read, ‘He guards the paths of the just and protects those who are faithful to him. Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will find the right way to go.’
Protection & discernment of what is the right way to go.
4) Verse 10 reads, ‘For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy.’
Wisdom will be yours, & joy will be the outcome of your search.
5) Verse 11 reads, ‘Wise choices will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe.’
The wisdom you gain will help you to find the good paths to follow, you will keep safe on the road of life.
These are just some of the benefits of searching the Bible & uncovering the hidden treasure of wisdom it contains, & which God wants to show us. Put like that, & in light of the shaky economy & age of austerity we now face, who wouldn’t want the benefits of the wisdom on offer from God?!
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