Proverbs is a book of wisdom, but knowledge is also KEY. In fact, part of the purpose of Proverbs is to give knowledge to the young man (Prov. 1:4). We learn in Proverbs that “wise men lay up knowledge,” receive knowledge, and disperse knowledge (Prov. 10:14; 15:7; 21:11). We discover instructions to apply thine heart unto knowledge (Prov. 22:17) and cry after it (Prov. 2:3), to receive knowledge rather than choice gold (Prov. 8:10). The knowledge of the Lord is precious!
WHAT IS KNOWLEDGE?
Knowledge speaks of the facts. It’s information we learn. In God’s Word, we can get knowledge for every area of life! For our mouths, hearts, work, home, friendships, finances, and so much more, He makes available what we need to know!
Two common Hebrew words for knowledge are yada’ (Strong’s H3045) and madda’ (Strong’s H4093), and they share two Hebrew letters — daleth (originally drawn in the oldest Biblical writings as a door), and ayin (originally a picture of an eye). That is a perfect depiction of knowledge because when you have knowledge you can see (ayin) past the door (daleth).
For me to know what is happening in the room next to me, I can get up, open the door, and look. If God gives His knowledge, without me moving from my current location, I can see what’s happening past the door and thus I know the information. God can allow us to “see” and “know” far more than what we could know on our own, and His Word lets us know what’s needed for situations that we have not even arrived at yet. He’s already been there, seen what’s there, and experienced it and now we can get His knowledge!
THE BEGINNING OF KNOWLEDGE
Many people can share facts about a range of topics but to have godly knowledge and the knowledge of God (the knowledge that matters most), there is a very clear starting point. Proverbs 1:7 says, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge.” When we reverence and honor God as Lord, we can begin to grow in knowledge beyond what this world offers.
Many people who seem so booksmart have no clue about true knowledge from God. They cannot access the things of God because they don’t respect Him as God, and His Word as the final authority. If we want God’s knowledge, we must humble ourselves, recognizing we don’t know, and commit to seeking God and studying His Word (the door that gives us access to Him) by His Spirit (1 Cor. 2:9-14). While men’s “facts” are unsure and ever changing, what a blessing to gain knowledge from the all-knowing, all-seeing, unchanging God! What an awesome privilege to know HIM through His Word and walk in relationship with Him!
Knowing facts (especially about God) is good, but having an experience with that information is even better. Applying what you know allows you to gain the greatest benefits of that knowledge. It would be one thing to say “I know about ice cream,” and then quickly list the ingredients and describe its temperature and consistency.
Those are the facts. It’s an entirely different thing to taste ice cream, and experience its delicious delight! With God & His Word, we can (and must) grow in knowledge, but we have to walk it out! It’s one thing to state the fact that God is a keeper, but it’s so much better to look to Him in times of need, and experience firsthand His ability to keep. Don’t settle for facts; go after the experience!
Let’s continue to, in the words of Peter, “grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 3:18). If we don’t know, we can go to someone whose knowledge is endless, who can see beyond any door, and has experienced what we go through (Heb 4:15)! The Bible records, “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!” (Rom 11:33). Wisdom? Knowledge? It all belongs to Him. Whatever we need to learn, let’s get it from the true source and walk it out in real-time to experience the benefits.