Wisdom and Life

He expounded to them in all the Scriptures things concerning Himself” (Luke 24).

Who is it that says, “Blessed is the man that heareth Me, watching daily at My gates, waiting at the posts of My doors. For whoso findeth Me findeth life,” in Proverbs 8:35? The same One who in the New Testament says, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that beareth My words and believes on Him that sent Me, has everlasting life” (John 5:24), and again, “He that believes on the Son has life” (John 3), and again, “In Him (the Word) was life” (John 1). It is Wisdom, the Son, the Word. As to creation we are told, “The Lord by wisdom has founded the earth.” Wisdom and the Word are identical, for all things were made by Him, the Word (John 1), and the Word is the Son of the Father’s love, for “all things were created by Him and for Him” (Col. 1:16). In Jehovah’s challenge to Job, He asks, “Where wast thou when I founded the earth, when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy” (Job 38:7)? We are taught that, in all things in creation, reconciliation and in every other sphere, the Son of the Father’s love must have the pre-eminence—the first place. Surely there would be no exception in the joy of “the sons of God” when the earth was founded! God’s sons shouted for joy then! Surely THE SON, by Whom and for Whom all was created, the Causer of that joy, was there! As to that we are not left in doubt, for we read, “Then was I by Him . . . daily His delight, rejoicing always before Him” (Prov. 8:30)—the loved Object of Jehovah’s pleasure,—His glorious Companion, in that scene of creation wonders and divine joys.

Sin and sorrow, rebellion and enmity, have stricken the world since then; and redemption and reconciliation were needed! Salvation from coming wrath was needed! Jesus, “GOD’S SON,” is the trustworthy Surety of this,—“our Deliverer from the coming wrath” (1 Thess. 1:10, N.Tr.). Not one of His own—blood-redeemed and Spirit-sealed—will the Son leave behind for that day of wrath! He is surely coming again! He is coming quickly! The day draws nigh! He will shout then! His shout will be a shout of command from the Throne from which He will arise, and His loved ones will be caught up to meet Him in the air (4:17). If the founding of the earth called forth shouts of joy, what rich bursts of praise shall His own delivering shout call forth, when the redeemed shall see the radiant face of their Redeemer actually for the first time! Creation caused shouts of joy! Redemption and reconciliation bring still richer shouts of joyful praise! And the Son of the Father’s love has the pre-eminence in all.

Wisdom is sometimes spoken of in the plural. Wisdoms’ (plu.) administrations are various. Her voice cries without, and her house is builded within. By Wisdom (sing.) “kings reign, and rulers make just decrees”; by her “princes rule, and nobles, all the judges of the earth” (Prov. 8:16). A wise nation may have wide influence. She may have varied administrations. Her sovereign head, however, is over all. “The assembly of the firstborn” in redemption is also “the bride, the Lamb’s wife” in administration (see Rev. 21:9-27). Bringing creation and administration together through redemption, Ephesians 3:9 says, “To enlighten all (with the knowledge of) what is the administration of the mystery hidden throughout the ages in God, who has created all things in order that now to the principalities and authorities in the heavenlies might be made known through the assembly the ALL-VARIOUS WISDOM OF GOD” (N.Tr.) and the assembly which the body of Christ, has as its Head, the Son of the Father’s love (Col. 1).

In what has been called the gem chapter of Job, chapter 28, the question is asked, “Where is wisdom to be found, and where is the place of understanding?” The answer comes from destruction and death, “We have heard its report with our ears.” Death and hades have their gates, but there is no administration of life and blessing from them, but by their sinister authority men are enslaved and held in bondage by the fear of death; but the anointed Possessor of Wisdom’s gates ministers peace and favour and life from them. And Wisdom is aggressive; right out into the broadways Her voice cries unto men, “Turn ye at My reproof: behold, I will pour forth My Spirit unto you, I will make known My Words unto you” (Prov. 1:23). This clearly pointed forward to Pentecost, when Peter said of his ascended and glorified Lord, “Have received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, He has shed forth this that ye see and hear; and about three thousand gladly received the word.”

Wisdom’s administrations still maintain the public proclamation of the Word of God without. Nothing can stop it! Faith recognizes and rejoices in it! “Blessed are the people that know the joyful sound!” How full and free for men is the final invitation in the inspired volume—“Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely” (Rev. 22:17)!

Nor can hades’ gates prevail against what the exalted Son of Man is building within. Upon His Father’s revelation of Himself as the Christ, the Son of the living God, He is building His assembly. The One who “was anointed from eternity” speaks of “the post of My doors” as well as “My gates”! The fame of Wisdom had reached the ears of “destruction and death!” When, however, the Lord of glory came, the princes of this age ignorantly and wickedly crucified Him; but God “made foolish the wisdom of this world.” It was God’s Wisdom in a mystery, that hidden Wisdom which God had predetermined before the ages” (1 Cor. 2:7), that through death secured the defeat of the schemes of hades, and the living, risen, triumphant Victor is now gloriously seated in His Father’s throne on high. His own building meanwhile goes on! Nothing can stop it! “Till we all arrive at the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God,” and are translated from earth to be with and like Him above. Then, “when Christ who is our life shall appear” we shall also appear with Him in glory.