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Strasburg, VA 22657



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He urges in 2 Timothy 2:15 (ASV):
Give diligence to present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth.
In Proverbs 23:13, Solomon urges his readers to "buy" both wisdom and understanding. What is the difference between these two words? On understanding, Brown, Driver, and Briggs note:
1) to discern, understand, consider
1a) (Qal)
1a1) to perceive, discern
1a2) to understand, know (with the mind)
1a3) to observe, mark, give heed to, distinguish, consider
1a4) to have discernment, insight, understanding
On chokmah, the word translated, wisdom, Vine1:
Chokmah is the knowledge and the ability to make the right choices at the opportune time. The consistency of making the right choice is an indication of maturity and development.
The wise man writes in Proverbs 15:14, "The heart of him that hath understanding seeketh knowledge: but the mouth of fools feedeth on foolishness." Notice his words in Proverbs 15:32, "He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul: but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding." Remember 2 Timothy 3:16, All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable ...for reproof, for correction...?"
Solomon uses two metaphors of very expensive and desirable metals to illustrate the importance of wisdom and understanding in Proverbs 16:16, "How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!"
Paul lists, "without understanding," in a list of twenty-three sins that he says of those who commit them that they are "worthy of death2" (Rom. 1:31). To be without understanding is indeed a serious matter! It is, in fact, what leads to many sins of commission and omission.


Solomon uses the words, understanding and understanding about fifty-seven times each in the book of Proverbs. He said in Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Solomon is known as the wisest man who ever lived. God had given him this wisdom as he began his reign as king (1 Kings 3:11):
Because thou hast asked this thing, and hast not asked for thyself long life; neither hast asked riches for thyself, nor hast asked the life of thine enemies; but hast asked for thyself understanding to discern judgment...
If one seeks after truth, wisdom, instruction, and understanding, he will go a long way in life! Buy the truth and sell it not.

1 Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.

2 Note: Though Paul says that those who commit those sins are "worthy of death, he nowhere urges Christians to harm or kill them. We are taught to love all sinners, but hate their sins.

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Sunday Bible Study: 9:30
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(Singing at Greenfield Senior Living, 14 Maynard Ln., (540) 298-6835, even-number months, 6:30 pm.)
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Warren-Flew Debate on the Existence of God
Thomas B. Warren Affirms God's Existence; Anthony G.N. Flew Denies
September 20-23, 1976

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