Throughout time, sages and prophets and wise men have given the cultures of the world the gift of their wisdom. When thinking of wisdom, we naturally think of the thinkers such as Plato, Aristotle, and Marcus Aurelius. We think of the sources, such as Confucianism, Buhhdism, and Judaism. But the most poignant question we can ask is simply this: where did it come from?
As in all elements of life, material and immaterial, there is a souce. Nothing has its source in nothing, and wisdom is no exception. So where did IT come from, and what was the original source?
The concept of God and our understanding of that concept is the basis upon which all human understanding rests. If one realizes that the source of all is God Himself, than it stands to reason that everything must necessarily flow from God, and be an emanation of God. Wisdom, as all other things, came therefore from God.
In the book of 2nd Chronicles of the Bible, we are told that God offered a wish to the king of His people. Much like the proverbial “genie in a bottle” wish, whatever he wanted, he could have. This young king, although able to have anything and everything he could imagine, asked instead for a condition of his own mind, a unique understanding of life… true wisdom from God Himself.
As it turned out, that is exactly what he got. For the first and only time in history, a mere mortal was given eternal wisdom directly from the source. The king soon after revealed the proof of his marvelous gift in the building of a kingdom of such wealth and magnitude such as the world had never known. He thnen wrote down his thoughts of wisdom in the books of the Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Psalms, and the Song of Solomon. And the world has never been the same since.
To understand the wisdom this king blessed the world with, we turn our eyes to the wisdom of Solomon, revealed in his sagacious work, Ecclesiastes. In this series of proverbs, the all wise King Solomon explores the subject of mankind’s greatest interest: the meaning of life. Surprisingly short, delightfully poignant, Ecclesiastes addresses the issues that give life its flavor. Riches, poverty, charity, greed. Marriage, adultery, children, divorce. Pleasure, work, achievement, laziness. Wisdom, oppression, foolishness, and judgment. Every aspect of human existence in every culture and people of the world finds wise comment in this mighty book. And the wisdom bears one over arching essential quality: it is timeless.
If we needed to understand the inner workings of a highly refined engine, we would consult the designer, the one who orchestrated the plan and assembly of the engine. Likewise, if we desired to learn of the human brain, we would find our answers with a neurosurgeon, one who had given thousands of hours to its study. It follows then that if we aspired to understand the meaning of human life, we would seek the advice of the authority on life, the one who had experienced the pinnacle of wealth and power and possessed wisdom and understanding beyond any mortal. That authority is King Solomon, and Ecclesiastes is the wisdom of Solomon.
Solomon boasted greater riches than any man, the extravagance of his abode unmatched. He ruled the known eastern world, his magnificence so great adversaries voluntarily paid homage to his throne. Kings and queens from the furthest reaches of the globe traversed continents and oceans just to hear his counsel, so vast was his wisdom and so broad his intellect.
And today, as was true for people thousands of years ago, we are privileged to discover these truths. There is no higher goal, no loftier destination than to know true wisdom.
by RS Kniep