got wisdomThe opening verses of Proverbs 4 instructed not only the king’s son who would one day be king, but also all sons and daughters of his kingdom [“Hear, ye children” – 4:1]. King Solomon called all youth of his kingdom to hear his counsel as they would a loving father. The king then imparts to the youth of his realm the instructions he received as a boy from his father, King David (4:3-6).

Proverbs 4:4-6He [King David] taught [lit. – “law”; perhaps “laid down the law”] me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart [mind; thoughts; seat of affections and emotions] retain [lay hold on; follow] my words: keep my commandments [laws and precepts], and live [and prosper]. 5 Get [acquire; procure] wisdom [skillful application of knowledge and discernment], get understanding [insight]: forget it not; neither decline [bow; turn aside;] from the words of my mouth. 6 Forsake her [wisdom] not, and she shall preserve [guard; watch over; protect] thee: love her [wisdom], and she shall keep [watch; guard; preserve] thee.”Fear the Lord

King David, Solomon’s father, was not a perfect man or father (something true of us all); however, he was a man who loved God, a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). David knew all too well the consequences of sin and exhorted his son to not follow the same path. He exhorted Solomon to know the Law of God and retain his father’s instructions in his heart (Proverbs 4:4). David’s passion was that his son would make a priority of pursuing wisdom and understanding (4:5).

The acquisition of godly wisdom begins with a right relationship with God. Every child knows all too well, when their relationship with parents and other authorities in life is strained, their heart is not open to instruction. The same is true regarding godly wisdom–lost sinners have no appetite for the Word or the Law of God (Romans 1:20-22, 28; 3:10-11, 19-20).

Salvation is fundamental to attaining godly wisdom: Believing there is a God who has communicated His Person and will to man through His Word and Law and acknowledging man has violated God’s moral judicial law. God has provided a Redeemer, a substitutionary sacrifice of His Son on the cross as an atonement for all who confess they are sinners and accept God’s Son, Jesus Christ as Savior. Consider the following verses:

Isaiah 53:4-6 Surely He [Christ] hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem Him [Christ] stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 5  But He [Christ] was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him [Christ]; and with His stripes we are healed. 6  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on Him [Christ] the iniquity of us all.”

John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son [Christ], that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Romans 5:8 – “But God commendeth [demonstrated] His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

salvationMy friend, you cannot “get wisdom, get understanding” (4:5) until your heart has settled the most fundamental question of life—salvation.

1) Do you confess you are a sinner?

2) Do you believe Jesus Christ is the Son God; that He died for your sins, was buried and rose from the grave?

3) Will you accept that salvation, the forgiveness of sin, is not something you merit by good works (church membership, baptism, communion)? Salvation is God’s free gift to those who believe Jesus Christ paid the penalty of their sin by His death on the cross (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Salvation is the pillar upon which godly wisdom rests. Wisdom begins here– believing and receiving Jesus Christ as your personal Savior.

If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior, I invite you to do that now.  If you have made that decision, it would be my joy and privilege to encourage you with additional discipleship material. Please email our ministry at:

Copyright 2015 – Travis D. Smith