Definition of the word wisdom in the Bible?

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Stephen L Smith

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I have been reflecting on the Biblical use of the word wisdom as I have been reading through the book of Proverbs. The Bible talks a lot about wisdom and its importance. To the best of my knowledge the Bible does not define the word wisdom. Thoughts?
 

Poimen

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
James defines wisdom in this way: "But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy." James 3:17
 

Jack K

Puritan Board Professor
It's maybe not a definition, but you could make the case that Ecclesiastes 12:13 offers a summary of biblical wisdom: "Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man." I doubt that book's Preacher would want us to be content with a one-sentence summary, though.
 

Stephen L Smith

Moderator
Staff member
It's maybe not a definition, but you could make the case that Ecclesiastes 12:13 offers a summary of biblical wisdom: "Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man." I doubt that book's Preacher would want us to be content with a one-sentence summary, though.
James defines wisdom in this way: "But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy." James 3:17
Daniel and Jack, I am inclined to think that if you put both verses together you have a full definition of Biblical wisdom.
 

timfost

Puritan Board Senior
I've heard it defined and have generally defined it this way:

Wisdom = knowledge used righteously.

This definition seems to harmonize the passages that speak about wisdom with its attributes and with James as @Poimen pointed out. Proverbs 15:2 says, "The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly, But the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness."
 

Stephen L Smith

Moderator
Staff member
Wisdom = knowledge used righteously.

This definition seems to harmonize the passages that speak about wisdom with its attributes and with James as @Poimen pointed out. Proverbs 15:2 says, "The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly, But the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness."
Thank you Tim. Very insightful.
 
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