This week we kick off a new sermon series on wisdom. The beginning of all wisdom is the fear of the Lord.
Questions for Small Groups:
To start your group, have everyone share one way they have seen God at work in their life this week.
Read Proverbs 9:10. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.
I. The nature of wisdom.
1. How would you define wisdom? Do you know any truly wise people that you go to for advice? What makes them wise?
2. We said that wisdom is “an understanding of reality that gives us confidence in the complexities of life.”
What do you think of this definition? What might you add to it?
II. The fear of the Lord.
3. How does Proverbs 9:10 demonstrate that faith and reason must co-exist?
4. “What you believe about God is the beginning of all your understanding.” Do you agree with this statement? Can you think of an example from your own life?
For example: if you believe that God is primarily wrath filled and a “cosmic cop,” then you will probably be able to think of examples of how you stay away from him or don’t confess to him.
If you see God as primarily a nice grandpa who gives you what you want, then you might be able to think of examples of how you have tried to use God to have a better and easier life.
5. Proverbs 9:10 tells us to fear God. To fear God isn’t about being afraid of God. It is about having a deep desire to love and know God, to trust him and serve him. To be in awe of him.
-One way we can test if we fear God is to think about this statement: “I’ll follow God if ___”
Whatever goes in your blank is what you truly fear rather than God.
-Another way to test if you fear God is to think through what you are afraid of. What is your biggest fear? Whatever you fear losing is what is replacing God in your life.
6. Read Proverbs 3:5-6. This is a practical definition of fearing God- to trust the Lord with all your heart, and to acknowledge him in all things. How are you doing with trusting God? How are you doing with acknowledging God in ALL of your actions and choices?
III. Christ is wisdom.
7. Read 1 Cor. 1:22-25, 30. Why does Paul redefine wisdom as a person? In what way is the cross of Jesus the living wisdom of God?
8. In 1 Cor. 1:30 Paul says that being IN CHRIST is righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, and that this is wisdom from God.
Righteousness: Every sin forgiven.
Redemption: Purchased out of the power of sin. Set free!
Sanctification: Made alive to God, holy, set apart for good works.
How can believing these three amazing truths about what we have in Christ become the wisdom that guides our lives?
9. In the sermon we used the examples of Neighboring, Sexuality, and Suffering. How can you apply the wisdom of the crucified Christ to these three areas in your own life?