Big Apple Chapel is a New Testament based church in New York City, modeled after the pattern of the early church, with a strong emphasis on following Christ as a community of His disciples.

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    New York, NY
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BAC Sermons

Wisdom for Sale! (Folly is Free)

2011-01-23 Ephesians 5:15-17



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15 Be very careful , then, how you live, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Making the most of every opportunity (redeeming the time), because the days are evil. 17 Therefore don't be unwise, but be understanding what the Lord's will is.   (Rm 12:1-2 perfect; Mt 7:21)

Wisdom = Choosing the right objectives and the right means of attaining those objectives

Ex 31:6  I have put wisdom in the hearts of all who are gifted artisans, that they may make all that I have commanded you  Rom 11:33

I. Why Should You Pay The Cost for Getting Wisdom?

Pr 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom
Pr 8:11 For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it.
Pr 16:16 How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!
Pr 3:13 Happy is the man that finds wisdom 35 The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools
Pr 1:28 Then they will call on me, but I will not answer...29 Because they hated knowledge, did not choose the fear of the Lord 30 rejected my counsel: despised all my reproof...31 eat the fruit of their own way 32 complacency of fools will destroy them;33  But whoever listens...

II. How to Buy Wisdom

Pr 23:23 Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.


1. THE FEAR OF THE LORD is the beginning of wisdom: knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. Pr 9:10; 1:7; Ps 111:10
Pr 8:13  The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; 
Ps 90:12 So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts to wisdom. (present a heart of wisdom) Ecc 11:9; 12:14


2. Work for It Pr 2:1-7 treasure my commandments...incline thy ear to wisdom, fear of the Lord...the Lord gives wisdom
Ask in faith Jas 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God...and it shall be given to him. 6...in faith


3. Master/Obey the Word Pr 1:2 (Purpose of Proverbs) To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;v5
Ps 19:7 The law of the Lord is perfect, converting/restoring the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple/naive 
Mt 7:24 whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man, who built his house upon a rock: Ps 119:98
2Tim 3:15 you have known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.


4. Hang with the Holy Pr 13:20 He that walks with the wise shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed. 1Cor 15:


5. Humbly Seek Reproof (bring to light) Pr 11:2 When pride comes, then comes shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.
Pr 29:15 The rod and reproof (negative consequences and instruction) give wisdom: but a child left to himself brings his mother to shame.
Pr 12:15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkens to counsel is wise.
Pr 19:20 Listen to advice and accept instruction and in the end you will be wise. (17:10 reproof vs 100 lashes learn at low volume)
Pr 13:10 Only by pride comes contention: but with the well advised is wisdom.
Pr 15:12 A scorner loves not one that reproves him: neither will he go to the wise.   Cx Ps 1= not blessed
Pr 9:8; 23:9 Reprove not a scorner, lest he shall hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee.
Js 3:17 wisdom from above is first pure, peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, w/o partiality and w/o hypocrisy

Power (security/significance); Pleasure; Possessions


6. Avoid Tar Pits of Satan's will =PPP: Self-indulgence Mt 24:45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord has made ruler over his household, to give them food in due season? 46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he comes shall find so doing.
Pride/Desire Pr 18:1 A man who isolates/separates himself seeks his own desire; He rages against all wise judgment. cf 11:2  #5a above
Escapism Pr 20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whoever is deceived by it is not wise.
Short-sightedness/Short-term gratification Mt 25:3 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:


7. Observe Consequences Pr 6:6 Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:
Pr 14:8 The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way: but the folly of fools is deceit/denial/cover-up

III. How to Be a First Class Fool: No Money Down, No Payments til August

(Foolish Objectives)

  1. Be self-centered rather than other or God centered, without a thought or plan for glorifying God or loving your neighbor.
  2. Spend your time on short-term, immediate gratification rather than invest for long-term enduring/eternal profit.
  3. Passively go with the flow rather than actively pursuing godliness.
  4. Do what's comfortable or fun rather than what's Christlike and right.
  5. Deceive yourself by pretending you know it all and criticize all criticism (shoot the messenger).
  6. Independently of God and others (w/o godly counsel), live as if this life is all there is.  2Cor 5:9-10

Questions for Reflection/Discussion/Response:

  1. Why don't people value wisdom more than folly? Are we accountable if Satan deceives us into living for our power/pleasure/possessions?
  2. If people don't make decisions my means of Biblical objectives, by what means/standards do they make them?
  3. What are some frequent "wrong objectives" you've observed? How could people have avoided following them?
  4. Can you cite  "hard decisions" you made in light of Biblical, God-glorifying objectives? If not, are you sure you're doing God's will?
  5. What steps will you take this year to stock up on wisdom? What will happen if you live like you've always lived? (get what always got)