ACQUIRING THE WISDOM TO OVERCOME EVIL
There are two types of wisdom. There are two types of Solomons.
There’s the wisdom of this world. There’s the wisdom of God.
There’s Solomon Gundy. There’s Solomon, son of King David.
Solomon Gundy was wise in the ways of the world. Solomon, son of David, was wise in the ways of God.
There are two kingdom’s…
…of the world
The wise of this world seek to do their own will, and have no humility.
The wise in the ways of God seek to do God’s Will – with meekness and HUMILITY.
Without humility there is no wisdom from God.
Without meekness, there can be no humility.
Unless we are meek and humble, we will not have the Wisdom of God within us;
The Wisdom of God who is Jesus.
Who said: “My Kingdom is not of this world!”
[WE’RE IN A SPIRITUAL BATTLE FOLKS. LET’S NOT FORGET THAT!]
When Jesus gave his Disciples the reason why they should “learn” from Him – the very WISDOM of God – the reason he gave was because He is MEEK AND HUMBLE in heart:
“Come to Me,
all you who are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest.
But what does it really mean to be “meek” and humble of heart?
The wisdom of this world, rooted in human pride and selfishness – has understandably established a very pejorative meaning for the word “meek” in our culture. To be “meek” in our culture is to be submissive and “weak”.
If your game is to gain personal power and control, then to achieve that requires that you exert YOUR will with force; so sure, it makes perfect sense that the world denigrates the idea of being meek as something good, because the world hates those who are meek – but to be “meek” in God is power, not weakness.
To be as meek as Jesus is to be as powerful as God.
“One of the best definitions of meekness that I have ever read is that it is strength under control. Meekness does not mean weakness and being a doormat so that everyone can walk all over you. The definition of meekness is someone who is humble, teachable, and patient under suffering. The person who has meekness means that they have the absence of any feelings of being better than others. This also means that they are modest and lowly in spirit.” [See: “What is the Biblical Difference between Meekness and Humility,”]
To be as meek as Jesus, is to be as “knowing of our sinfulness and weakness” as St. Paul:
But he [Jesus] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” [2 Corinthians 12:9-11].
The truly meek delight in persecutions and difficulties [in their innermost spirit even while possibly being sad and lamenting the evil behind that persecution and hatred] because they know that what attracts that hate and hurt is the Wisdom and Understanding and Truth and Peace and Light of God – which is Jesus. within being reflected without – our Mission He gave us. So, a confirmation of sorts that we’re with Jesus, He’s with us, and we’re “representing”!
Until Solomon, the “meekest” person apparently to have lived was Moses, presumably the wisest man as well:
But Solomon was even meeker!
Today’s first reading is all about Solomon’s meekness before God, and the clarity in which he understood how the ONLY thing that truly belonged to him was his “heart” – his ‘will’….his power to direct his “desire”.
To what will we give our heart? To what will be direct our will? That’s the only question that really matters in life, and we all instinctively know that, I believe: we “desire” things to possess them, to bring them into us, under our control, to be a part of us….we’re always asking ourselves….’what do I want?” When we decide what that is…we go after it.
To know that we are nothing but that one thing “the ability to direct our will in the interest of acquiring that which we desire (i.e., the thing to which we give our ‘heart’) is to know that all good comes from God; therefore, in truth, everything in us that is good to which others give praise will naturally inspire the wise of this world to ‘glory in themselves’; while those wise in the ways of God because they are MEEK will give glory and praise to God.
The wise of this world hear praise and get puffed up, believing they are the source and ‘author’ of that good; those wise in God will know the true source of what is good in them and will use the occasion of praise being directed toward them to redirect it to its proper source: God the Father:
Then a certain ruler asked Him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” “Why do you call Me good?” Jesus replied. “No one is good except God alone.” [Luke 8:19]
Why did Jesus say Solomon was the wisest person to have ever lived up to the time of his coming, the time of the Messiah?
His exemplary meekness and humility! Simple as that!
See for yourself. Below is the reading the first reading for today that recounts how Solomon came to be the “wisest man that ever lived up to the time of the Messiah”.
Reading I 1 Kgs 3:4-13
Solomon went to Gibeon to sacrifice there,
because that was the most renowned high place.
Upon its altar Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings.
In Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream at night.
God said, “Ask something of me and I will give it to you.”
“You have shown great favor to your servant, my father David,
because he behaved faithfully toward you,
with justice and an upright heart;
and you have continued this great favor toward him, even today,
seating a son of his on his throne.
O LORD, my God, you have made me, your servant,
king to succeed my father David;
but I am a mere youth, not knowing at all how to act.
I serve you in the midst of the people whom you have chosen,
a people so vast that it cannot be numbered or counted.
Give your servant, therefore, an understanding heart
to judge your people and to distinguish right from wrong.
For who is able to govern this vast people of yours?”
The LORD was pleased that Solomon made this request.
So God said to him: “Because you have asked for this–
not for a long life for yourself,
nor for riches, nor for the life of your enemies,
but for understanding so that you may know what is right–
I do as you requested.
I give you a heart so wise and understanding
that there has never been anyone like you up to now,
and after you there will come no one to equal you.
In addition, I give you what you have not asked for,
such riches and glory that among kings there is not your like.”