Colossians 2:1-3 “For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”
Did you get that? All the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are not just IN Christ, but are “hidden” in Him. They must be searched out. Sought for. Dug out. Mined. And that must be done everywhere in God’s Word.
Proverbs for instance, is such a treasure in God’s Word, but it does not always yield up its riches easily. In fact, as Prov. 2:3-5 notes – the wisdom found in it must be sought out if we would have it: “if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.”
God delights to be sought out, pursued. For it is in the pursuit of Him that those who are genuinely His and those who merely make a profession of faith are weeded out. Those who won’t take the time or effort to know Him, will have the fruit of those non-labors. Nothing. And conversely, those who do expend the effort, as the text above says, WILL understand the fear of the Lord and find out the knowledge of God. The reward is infinitely valuable. All the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. God Himself in Christ.
So it is, when you get to a portion like Prov. 24, it is easy to just skim over the statements like a series of disconnected bits of advice, and fail to see that all the way through, things are being revealed to us about the blessed God we serve because of Christ. Let me tease some of those out below.
1Be not envious of evil men, nor desire to be with them, 2for their hearts devise violence, and their lips talk of trouble.
As we are to be taking on the character, the image of Christ in our Christian walk, we are called to lose all envy of evil men – because God Himself is a SATISFIED God. He is never envious of any.
What else is He?
3By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; 4by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.
God is a WISE God. He never acts without a purpose and a plan, thoroughly thought through.
5A wise man is full of strength, and a man of knowledge enhances his might, 6for by wise guidance you can wage your war, and in abundance of counselors there is victory.
God is an UNASSAILABLE God. His purposes and plans will all succeed.
7Wisdom is too high for a fool; in the gate he does not open his mouth.
God is an UNKNOWN God by mere human wisdom. Perceptible, but unknown, except by the revelation of the Spirit to the soul in Christ.
8Whoever plans to do evil will be called a schemer. 9The devising of folly is sin, and the scoffer is an abomination to mankind.
God is a HOLY God, and never the AUTHOR of EVIL.
10If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small.
God is an OMNIPOTENT God. He never fails in any adversity. And He is OUR God.
11Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter.
12If you say, “Behold, we did not know this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work?
God is a COMPASSIONATE God, calling to the lost through the proclamation of the Gospel, and providentially withholding evil from having its full sway.
13My son, eat honey, for it is good, and the drippings of the honeycomb are sweet to your taste.
14Know that wisdom is such to your soul; if you find it, there will be a future, and your hope will not be cut off.
God is a God of SWEETNESS to the soul. The more you come to taste Him in all of His goodness, the more you crave Him.
15Lie not in wait as a wicked man against the dwelling of the righteous; do no violence to his home; 16for the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity.
God is an UPHOLDING and PRESERVING God to all who are His.
17Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles, 18lest the Lord see it and be displeased, and turn away his anger from him.
God is not a VINDICTIVE God. He takes no pleasure in the demise of His enemies.
19Fret not yourself because of evildoers, and be not envious of the wicked, 20for the evil man has no future; the lamp of the wicked will be put out.
God is JUST God, and a God of JUDGMENT. He will bring justice in due time.
21My son, fear the Lord and the king, and do not join with those who do otherwise, 22for disaster will arise suddenly from them, and who knows the ruin that will come from them both?
Contrary to the wicked, God is a BLESSING God. Warning and protecting from coming woe.
As you read your Bible, let the whole of Scripture constantly inform you of the goodness, greatness and wonder of our living, triune God.