Proverbs 3:19-20

Proverbs 3:19-20 "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."
Church Buffalo, NY
Having expended a lot of creative literary energy describing wisdom in the first few chapters of Proverbs, Solomon approached his paternal duty from a different angle in these verses.  Instead of playing matchmaker between wisdom and his son, Solomon chose to briefly play the role of an advertiser.  To help his son desire wisdom, Solomon introduced Someone Who used that which he was trying to promote – he introduced God.

Today, companies are willing to spend insane amounts of money to put successful faces in the same scene with their products.  In recent years, a shoe company was willing to pay the world’s fastest man, Usain Bolt $10 million a year to show off their running shoes.  A different shoe company was willing to pay teenage golf pro, Michelle Wie between $4 and $5 million a year to wear their golfing shoes.  The same shoe company shelled out $55 million to Serena Williams so that she would wear their tennis shoes.  An airline was willing to pay actress, Jennifer Aniston $5 million to promote their airfare.  A perfume company paid Brad Pitt $7 million and Nicole Kidman $12 million to promote their fragrances.   Soft drink companies handed $26 million over to Taylor Swift and $50 million over to Beyonce for drinking their beverages in front of a camera.  A coffee company gave George Clooney $40 million for the doing the same thing.  During his highly anticipated 2017 fight against Conor McGregor, Floyd Mayweather reportedly earned $25 million by selling ad space on the clothing he wore before and during the fight.   Insurance companies are willing put millions of dollars into their advertising budgets for quarterbacks like Peyton Manning and Aaron Rodgers to sell their products.  Companies spend millions of dollars on the rights to put successful people in the same picture with their products because successful people make products appealing.

Like a seasoned advertiser, Solomon did the same thing in these verses after having already introduced and described wisdom.  When he went shopping for the best candidate to represent and “sell” wisdom, he chose the greatest Person of all – he chose the most successful Person of all – he chose the Person with the biggest accomplishment of all – he chose the Creator of the heavens and the Earth.  He put the Creator in the same scene with wisdom.  He put the Builder of all things in the same picture with understanding.  He put God Almighty in the same photo shoot with knowledge.  People sell products and God “sells” virtue.  If there was any skepticism in Rehoboam, his father hoped to remove it by pairing God and wisdom.  If there was any hesitation in Rehoboam’s soul, his father hoped to remove it by pointing him to Creation where Rehoboam could see wisdom in action.

BY the virtue of WISDOM, God Almighty made the Earth.
BY the virtue of understanding, the Creator established the universe – the galaxies, planets and stars.
BY the virtue of knowledge, the Lord Jehovah took the deep and broke it up for the whole planet to be harmoniously sustained with water.  By these virtues, God made all things.  By these virtues, God accomplished the world’s greatest accomplishment and performed the world’s greatest performance.  Nature has harmony and its ecosystems have balance because of wisdom.  Our planet is sustainable and stable because of wisdom.  Our world exists because God used wisdom to make it.  God combined His power with the virtue of wisdom to beautifully and marvelously create all things.

For a young man looking to accomplish great things in life, Solomon’s promotional piece would’ve been effective.  For a young man preparing to inherit the throne of a man who accomplished great things, this “sell” would’ve been a good “sell.”  If God did do all that He did in Genesis 1 BY WISDOM (and He most certainly did), then wisdom was much more than a father’s suggestion – it was necessary for accomplishment in life.  By bringing God into the promotion picture, Solomon was telling his son: “Don’t just take my word for it, look at what God accomplished with wisdom.”

By pointing to Creation, this wise man was pointing his readers to the inescapable billboard of life.  Nature is unavoidable and inescapably for us all.  We can take shelter from Nature but we can’t be sheltered from Nature. We can go indoors to get out of Nature’s elements but we can’t ignore its elements.  When we think about the amazing planet on which we live, we are confronted with its mind-blowing attributes.  How do birds fly and how do fish swim?  How does all that water keep flowing downstream and keep falling from the sky?  How do plants grow and bees pollenate?  How do animals survive the depths of the oceans and the peaks of the mountains?  How do bears hibernate and butterflies migrate?  These questions about Nature come natural to our race because we are curious creatures.  These questions lead us to conclude that God needed more than sheer power to create the heavens and the Earth – He needed wisdom, understanding and knowledge.  An intricate universe of planets, stars, orbits and forces is the product of more than just power.  An intricate planet of water, rock, plants and animals is the product of more than just might.  The intricacy of all things is the product of wisdom and Divine ingenuity.

Nature is the Bible’s greatest “sell” for wisdom.  Muscle alone doesn’t bring accomplishment.  Power alone doesn’t bring success.  Determination alone doesn’t produce success.  Without wisdom, nothing great will be accomplished.

In light of these verses, I would highly suggest that you live your life with a high exposure to Nature.  Live in a home with many windows - ones that aren’t covered during the day and ones that aren’t closed during the summer.  Take breaks in order to take walks.  Travel to places that will allow you to experience the outdoors rather than going to be entertained indoors.  Learn to observe and appreciate the amazing Creation that surrounds you.  Such a lifestyle just might lead you to covet and pursue the virtue of wisdom that was used by God to make it.   

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