If you Google the phrase ‘wisest man who ever lived’, you will find that, in the minds of most people, this distinction belongs to Solomon, the legendary king who ruled the ancient nation of Israel about 3,000 years ago. A thinker as well as a leader, an author as well as a ruler, King Solomon was responsible for compiling the biblical book of Proverbs. In that book, he wrote, “A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels.” (Proverbs 1:5, KJV).
One of the most famous stories from the life of Solomon was his encounter with God, where the Lord offered Solomon any blessing he desired, including wealth, honor, or power. According to the biblical record (II Chronicles 1:1-12), Solomon chose wisdom. And God was so impressed with this choice that God then rewarded Solomon with all these other blessings, as well.
So Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, knew that wisdom was the most important quality a person could possess. And according to the notation above from his own writings, he knew that mental growth was a process, not automatic; it was increased incrementally, not gained all at once. Solomon knew that today’s efforts in gathering wisdom and knowledge would bring tomorrow’s successes in life and enterprise, because wisdom is the land under our feet, the solid, immovable rock upon which everything else is built.
People pursue all kinds of things in life. They pursue wealth. They pursue long life. They also pursue lesser prizes, such as pleasure and fame. But the ironic thing about life is that one gains these things, not by pursuing them, but rather by minimizing their importance and pursuing wisdom. Then these other “things” make their way toward the wise individual. Like Solomon, therefore, learn to prefer wisdom. If you do, you “shall attain” all the blessings that life has to offer.
Dr Dave Martin
A daily devotion for a better way of living.