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Dig Deeper – Knowing God Holds the Keys to Wisdom (Job 28:12-23)

Sermon on 9 October 2022 by Ps Gaius


Introduction

The books of Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon are books of wisdom. Today, our passage is from the book of Job. He was an upright man. The devil wanted to test him. Job had sickness and suffered, but never cursed God. He was full of praise for God. In the end, Job received blessings from God.


Message


“But where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding? – Job 28:12


Wisdom not easily found; it is hidden. It is concealed because of our pride. We cannot find the wisdom of God easily.


It is hidden from the eyes of all living and concealed from the birds of the air. – Job 28:21


Visualise a tree. Wisdom is within the roots, deep into the ground. We start from the surface, but we need to dig deeper. We start with the ‘what’, then think about ‘how’, and finally ‘why’ something is what it is.


What does wisdom look like?


“Surely there is a mine for silver, and a place for gold that they refine. Iron is taken out of the earth, and copper is smelted from the ore. Man puts an end to darkness and searches out to the farthest limit the ore in gloom and deep darkness. He opens shafts in a valley away from where anyone lives; they are forgotten by travelers; they hang in the air, far away from mankind; they swing to and fro. As for the earth, out of it comes bread, but underneath it is turned up as by fire. Its stones are the place of sapphires, and it has dust of gold. “That path no bird of prey knows, and the falcon's eye has not seen it. The proud beasts have not trodden it; the lion has not passed over it. “Man puts his hand to the flinty rock and overturns mountains by the roots. He cuts out channels in the rocks, and his eye sees every precious thing. He dams up the streams so that they do not trickle, and the thing that is hidden he brings out to light. – Job 28:1-11


Man is smart. Man has knowledge. Man is able to change his environment to bring convenience to his life. Knowledge alone does not make one wise. Knowledge has to be applied to attain wisdom. The Lord gives us talents; we can all be wise as long as we walk out the words of God. King Solomon was wise. When he took over from his father king David, he prayed for wisdom to rule. Two women came to king Solomon one day claiming a baby belonged to them. King Solomon judged that he should cut the baby into half to distribute to both women. The true mother was willing to give up her baby. And the nation saw that the wisdom of God was with king Solomon.


And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice. – 1 Kings 3:28


God gives us wisdom to do the right thing; never the wrong thing.


And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice. It cannot be bought for gold, and silver cannot be weighed as its price. It cannot be valued in the gold of Ophir, in precious onyx or sapphire. Gold and glass cannot equal it, nor can it be exchanged for jewels of fine gold. No mention shall be made of coral or of crystal; the price of wisdom is above pearls. The topaz of Ethiopia cannot equal it, nor can it be valued in pure gold. – Job 28:14-19


Verse 13 tells us that we cannot find wisdom on our own. There are stories in the bible which mention the wisdom of man being used to trap Jesus. Jesus did not quarrel with those wanting to trap him. Instead, he answered with a question in a gentle way. John chapter 8 tells us the story of the people wanting to stone a prostitute to death, quoting Moses’ law. But Jesus said that the one without sin may cast the first stone. Luke chapter 10 tells us about the good Samaritan, where Jesus led a lawyer to the answer of who a neighbour was under the law – the one who showed mercy to the victim. In Luke chapter 20, the Pharisees wanted to trap Jesus by asking Jesus whether it is lawful to pay taxes to Caesar. Jesus again answered with a question – whose likeness and inscription was on the coin and what belonged to Caesar should be returned to him.


At that time Jesus declared, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; - Matthew 11:25


How do we look for wisdom?


Abaddon and Death say, ‘We have heard a rumor of it with our ears.’ “God understands the way to it, and he knows its place. For he looks to the ends of the earth and sees everything under the heavens. When he gave to the wind its weight and apportioned the waters by measure, when he made a decree for the rain and a way for the lightning of the thunder, then he saw it and declared it; he established it, and searched it out. – Job 28:22-27


Why do we need to seek wisdom?


1. Connect with God


We need to have wisdom to connect with God.


For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God's mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. - Colossians 2:1-3


until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, - Ephesians 4:13


2. Comfort in tribulations


“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. – Matthew 7:24-25


As Christians, we will have suffering. The world could not accept Jesus, and He and His disciples suffered. Likewise, we will also face tribulations. But the bible upholds you every step of the way. We need to know God well in order to find comfort in Him.


3. Conduct in life


We need wisdom to have the right conduct in life.


Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. – James 3:13


But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. – James 3:17


Closing


Let the word of God dwell in us. Let us connect with God, find comfort in our tribulations, and have good conduct. Let our life glorify God. Let us dig deeper in our life journey.


And he said to man, ‘Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to turn away from evil is understanding.’” – Job 28:28





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