I’m preparing for an adult Sunday School class, and the topic is wisdom — something that, in my opinion, we’re not showing much of lately in our country. What is true wisdom? Well, it goes beyond book learning and intellectual accomplishments. For the Christian, wisdom is knowing God’s Word and applying it well to life.
For example, right now we are facing a pandemic. The Coronavirus is spreading. People are panicking. What should we do? Some would say the Bible has no advice on this problem, but it does– for example, remember the parable about the farmer who decided to build bigger barns to store his excess produce? Here’s what God said to him:
” ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?'” Luke 12:20
In other words, God tells us not to hoard. It may not benefit us at all, and it will harm others. So why on earth are experiencing a shortage of toilet paper? This is not wise behavior. What the Bible does say is “love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12:31) Before you empty that shelf, stop and remember that your neighbor needs these items as well.
People are becoming excessively worried about going out among others. Now, don’t get me wrong. If you have a chronic health condition that puts you at risk, or are elderly or in another high risk group, of course, stay in, Everyone else — take reasonable precautions– wash your hands, keep them away from your face, cover your coughs, disinfect what you can. Don’t make unnecessary trips to public venues. Seek medical attention and self isolate if you have symptoms. Then stop worrying. Again, the Bible asks us:
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?” Luke 12:25
I understand. I’m an anxious person myself, and with the barrage of negative information we’re receiving it’s tempting to give in to fear and act in what seems to be our own best ( sometimes selfish) interest. But if knowing what the Bible says doesn’t lead us to act in obedience, what’s the point in saying we’re Christians? (for more on this topic see The Right Kind of Faith) We will experience true peace, even at times like this, when we depend upon Christ and admit that He’s in control and we are not. In fact, we never were! Maybe that’s the lesson God is teaching us.
“ But I trust in you, Lord;
I say, “You are my God.”
My times are in your hand
deliver me from the hands of my enemies,
from those who pursue me.” Psalm 31: 14-15