Source of Wisdom

This jubilee project has been — simply — an attempt at taking Scripture seriously in my own context.  What other world does the Bible apply to, really, than each of our own contexts?  Context upon context since Adam and Eve tread through the garden. Context upon context until we see the new heavens and new earth promised upon Jesus’ return.

So as happens all day long if we are looking for it, I saw a signpost pointing to the relevance of Scripture.  David Brooks, writing in the New York Times in a piece about Alcoholics Anonymous, entitled “Bill Wilson’s Gospel,” said “…even in an age of scientific advance, it is still ancient insights into human nature that work best. Wilson built a remarkable organization on a nighttime spiritual epiphany.”

AA is but one example of human wisdom that we sometimes forget was God’s idea.  I’m not saying that Bill Wilson forgot it; only that often the rest of us do, thinking, “Wow… what a great idea” and giving our modern era the credit for such enlightenment.

Recently I was reading in Genesis 2, and I came upon verse 9 which says, “And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food.”  And I immediately thought, “Michael Pollan.”  I love his work.  He’s changing lives and getting people thinking about what and how they are eating.  So I am thankful for his work.

Yet when I read Michael Pollan telling us, “Eat food.  Not too much.  Mostly plants,” I should think, “Genesis 2,” and not the other way around.

We’ve got a sourcebook for all wisdom, and we run around everywhere else trying to find wisdom, celebrating the latest wisdom bringer.  Let’s do both — know the ultimate source AND delight in those who creatively package and remind us of eternal truths.

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One response to “Source of Wisdom

  1. Jonathan Pavluk

    Yes, I think we can know the ultimate Source of wisdom. But, what do you mean by us having the “sourcebook”? Even the Book (the one that I think you are nominating as preferable to that estimable work of Michael Pollan’s!) does not claim to be All That. Instead, the Bible points to a wisdom that inhabits the world as well as an eternity quite beyond the pages of scripture: “The Lord possessed me (wisdom) in the beginning of His way, before His works of old. I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was. When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water.” etc … (Prov. 8: 22-24 & ff.) So, in my opinion, we ought not to miss the chance to appreciate any part of wisdom that we can apprehend in our world and in our time, and it might be Michael Pollan’s words today. And certainly, we might as well give him and the other writers their due — maybe, pretty much equal credit — with all of those scriptures that you are thinking you should appreciate more; after all, “My delights (i.e. Wisdom’s) [are] with the sons of men”! (Prov. 8:31). When we delight in the wisdom of these writers, we are doing just fine honor to the Wisdom that is from above, and we are getting closer to possessing that Wisdom ourselves: “I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.”

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