“And He said to the human race, ‘The fear of the Lord — that is wisdom, and to shun evil is understanding.’” Job 28:28
We read in the Bible that Solomon was the wisest man who ever lived, but I think Job gives him a good run for his money. Job is described as blameless; he was persecuted by those who claimed to be wise and knew what was best for him.
Job’s friends are completely blind to the truth, and could be described as unwise counsellors. They tell Job that his suffering must have been caused from his disobedience or because he has sinned, and implore him to repent.
Job tells us in chapter 28 that wisdom comes from the fear of the Lord — something we hear echoed all through Scripture. If this is true, then why do we fear people so much? We may find ourselves listening to someone’s advice because he’s older, seems wiser, or because we’re afraid he might be upset if we didn’t obey.
How often have we allowed ourselves to be discouraged or dissuaded from doing something, due to the negative counsel of others who claim to be speaking wisdom on our behalf?
I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have counselors or mentors; I have one, and he has been an incredible blessing. But we need to be very careful about who we allow to speak into our lives. Someone may claim to have wisdom, but check the fruit of his life. Is he blind to the truth, like Job’s friends? Is Jesus the source of his wisdom? Does he fear the Lord? If not, be very careful about how much influence he has, even if he has all the best intentions in the world.
So be like Job: seek God for answers when things get tough.
Dear Lord, I pray for Your help to be wise and discerning when it comes to receiving advice and suggestion from others. Lead me into the knowledge of what "fearing You" really looks like, and provide me with good mentors and friends who will help me on my journey through life.
Think about the people your life. Is there someone who you need to stop listening to? Ask God for courage and strength to say no.