“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him” [James 1:5]
Download this teaching in PDF: Working Wisdom
Takes note, our opening verse does not say that God will teach you wisdom, neither that anyone will teach you; but that God will give wisdom to those who ask. We are not talking here about the short fallen wisdom of the worldly system and carnal minded, we are talking about Godly wisdom, which comes only from God. No man can teach wisdom to another; for when we study the Word of God, we are increased in knowledge, knowledge bring forth understanding, and understanding brings forth wisdom; but God gives the increase thereof. However, we all do lack wisdom, even though we might diligently study the Word. The Greek word for lack is ‘leipetai’, which also translates as ‘is lacking’ or ‘may be lacking’; indicating that all men have some sort of wisdom, but might not be full in wisdom. In such a case, James exalts us to ask, for God will not rebuke us for asking, but will surely increase us in wisdom. The Amplified Version renders this verse as follow: “If any of you is deficient in wisdom, let him ask of the giving God [Who gives] to everyone liberty and ungrudgingly, without reproaching or faultfinding, and it will be given him.” The underlined word, ‘deficient’ means: Inadequate in amount or degree; …of a quantity not able to fulfill a need or requirement; …Falling short of some prescribed norm – which also derives from the synonyms of the Greek word, ‘leipetai’
Wisdom is given from God unto man, first for the works of the ministry, and also for life itself. “Then wrought Bezaleel and Aholiab, and every wise hearted man, in whom the LORD put wisdom and understanding to know how to work all manner of work for the service of the sanctuary, according to all that the LORD had commanded” [Exo.36:1]. The wisdom of God can be worked in our lives, but first, we must learn how to work wisdom in ministry. Now you might not be in any particular office of a ministry, but you still have some sort of ministry within the body of Christ; for all members must work in wisdom to accomplish the great and glorious works which has been given to us. Proverbs 11:30 says; ‘He that winneth souls are wise.’ Indeed, the soul winner is wise, because he/she that wins souls has discovered how to work out their own salvation [Phil.2:12]. Yes, the working out of your salvation is directly tied to soul winning; for as you win souls, you yourself gain insight on living a righteous life as you teach others on the things you are to study and meditate upon. I find many ‘ordinary Christians’, being tossed to and fro, being conformed by the world instead of being transformed by the renewing of their mind. Understand that when you don’t give the time to study the Word of God, all sorts of elements of the world will find ways to influence your daily living. Look at the example of small children going to school; you can have a naughty child surrounded by good behaving kids and see him/her become good too. In the other hand, you can have a good child surrounded by naughty kids and see him/her become naughty too. This is the same with adults; that which you surround yourself with more in life will have preference in your life.
You see this among Christians today; those who choose to make able enough time to study the Word of God and attend church frequently, they act different from those who doesn’t. It isn’t that God has given them something more than others, it is that they have learned to react rightly to the Word of God.
We also see in Exodus 34:9, that wisdom can be imparted: “And Joshua the son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom; for Moses had laid his hands upon him: and the children of Israel hearkened unto him, and did as the LORD commanded Moses.” It’s important that we surround ourselves with those who are wise; for in the anointing there is also found wisdom. You might see some folks in church, they always seem to want to get near the pastor, or atleast just shake his hand. These are the ones that understand that the anointing is transferable, and they are expectant thereof. In most of such cases, you see these folks functioning at a different level than others.
When we look at king Solomon in 1 Kings 4, we see that wisdom can be acquired, just as God asked Solomon what he wanted; Solomon answered the Lord and said, wisdom. Solomon was wise, but the wisdom God bestowed upon him exceeded all human understanding. Solomon ask for wisdom so that he might lead all the people of Israel in the right way, and through that wisdom God gave him, Solomon succeeded in all things.
Most of the time when we see folks lack wisdom, it is due to what we read in Job 28:28; ‘And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.” Some folks don’t fear the Lord; and this fear is a good fear. It comes by revelation as we study the Word of God and find our rightstanding with the Lord. The fear of the Lord is an active consciousness of the reality of God’s Word which leads us in living righteous lives. We see this in Job 49:3; “My mouth shall speak of wisdom; and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.” This means, speaking the Word of God as you study the Word. Studying the Word brings forth knowledge, koweldge brings forth understanding, and understanding brings forth wisdom. You identify a righteous man by the words he speaks [Psa.37:30], for a righteous man speaks wisdom.
With wisdom given to those who ask; there also comes the working of wisdom. Proverbs gives an entire chapter to this subject. Join me as we look at working wisdom:
“My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:  For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.  Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart:  So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.  Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.  Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.  It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.  Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:  So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.  My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction:  For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.  Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.  For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.  She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.  Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour.  Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.  She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.  The LORD by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens.  By his knowledge the depths are broken up, and the clouds drop down the dew.  My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion:  So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck.  Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.  When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet.  Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh.  For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.  Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.  Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.  Devise not evil against thy neighbour, seeing he dwelleth securely by thee.  Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.  Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.  For the froward is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous.  The curse of the LORD is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.  Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly.  The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools”[Pro.3].
Be Propelled by WISDOM
“Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding” (Proverbs 4:7).
The Word of God is the wisdom of God. It makes no difference how educated you are, how many books you’ve read, or what you think you know in life, or about life; if you don’t have the Word of God in you, you can’t function in the wisdom of God. All you would have is the wisdom of men, and the wisdom of men can only take you so far because of its limitations. The wisdom of God is what takes you all the way, so that’s what you need.
With wisdom, you have it made. With wisdom, you’re set up for a life of endless victories and unlimited possibilities, where the miraculous becomes your daily experience. For example, in Exodus 14:16, God instructed Moses saying, “Lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.” This was the wisdom of God in action. This beats human imagination. The wisdom of man (science) can’t accept that anyone could divide the sea, the Red Sea at that, with a mere rod; but this was God’s science. He knew it would work. He wasn’t ‘trying’ to perform a miracle; in fact, He instructed Moses to do it, and Moses acted on His Word and it produced results.
Again, the Lord Jesus says that the believer will lay hands on the sick and have them recover (Mark 16:18). Sickness is usually inside the body, not outside; how then do you touch somebody on the outside to repair what is broken inside? There’s no scientific explanation that makes this possible. Only God, in His infinite wisdom, can direct power for healing through contact.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” Now that you’re in Christ, you have a new culture: the Christ-culture. Until you let this reality dominate every aspect of your life, you’ll live like an ordinary person and not experience the sublime blessings of the life in Christ. You would still get sick when you ought to walk in divine health and you might be broke when you should be thriving in abundance.
“The LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding” (Proverbs 2:6). You can’t be more successful than the level of wisdom that you have in you. As a Christian, it’s important how you think and what you think about. You’re not of this world; therefore, you shouldn’t think like an ordinary person. Because your spirit is recreated, you should only think the Word-way. God’s Word must form the basis for the kind of thoughts you process and allow.
Through God’s Word, wisdom is not only imparted to your spirit, it is also increased. As you meditate on the Word, your mind is programmed to think accordingly. You’ll begin to talk differently, and act in line with your confessions of faith. You’ll always be glad about your decisions and choices because you’re propelled by wisdom to be in the center of God’s will all the time. The Word of God is the only material that can energize you for success, position you for greatness, and sustain you in the transcendent life.
WISDOM STANDS YOU OUT
There’s a wisdom from God that’s revealed to us to live by. Jesus functioned in it, and as a result, He completely baffled those in His day. He had a different mindset. His words and teachings were different; in most cases, they were in complete antithesis to the Law, and to natural human thinking.
According to the Law, for example, the soul that sins shall die (Ezekiel 18:20), but Jesus manifested the love, mercies and grace of God: “For the law was given by Moses, [but] grace and truth came by Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). Moses taught “An eye for an eye; life for life”; but Jesus came to reveal to us the life and nature of God; the way God thinks—the way that wins—the love-way.
Man had been raised in the natural world to be vengeful, to be insulting and injurious. But Jesus taught that we should love our enemies, pray for, and bless our detractors and persecutors: “…Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you” (Matthew 5:44).
That’s strange to the natural man. Loving your enemies isn’t what you’d naturally like to do. But Jesus came with Kingdom principles: a new way to live. He spoke love, and demonstrated love. Those that heard Him heard Love’s voice. Those He encountered felt Love’s embrace. Even the officers that were sent to arrest Him on a certain occasion, after listening to His teachings, submitted, “…No man ever spoke like this man!” (John 7:46). Jesus functioned with the wisdom of the just; that’s what you need in your life; that’s what stands you out and makes you a wonder to your world.
In closing; I want to draw your attention to Proverbs 3:13 which says: “Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.” Wisdom is a principle thing [Pro.4:7]; and we ought to get wisdom, for everyone loves a happy man, someone they can turn to who has understanding. Lastly, I leave you with these words in James 3:13 – “Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.” Learn to work wisdom, it is the gateway to prosperity and good success.