Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Wisdom in a Troubled Time by the Bishop of Durham, Dr. N. T. Wright

image This is the latest lecture found on N.T. Wright's web page.

What do we need, and what will the next generation need, to see us through?

To that question, the whole Bible offers one massive and obvious answer: Wisdom. That beautiful and haunting poem from the book of Job issues a call to rediscover the wisdom we need in the middle of the times we live in. I chose that reading long before the present crisis, but re-reading it now it leaps out at us that, in the previous chapter, Job denounces those who think they can make their financial systems last for ever: though they heap up silver like dust, though they build their houses like nests, they may go to bed with wealth but they will do so no more; terrors overtake them like a flood; in the night a whirlwind carries them off. I remember being told as a boy that the Bible was as up to date as tomorrow mornings newspaper, and there you have it in Job 27: a vivid and accurate picture of our world. And it is in that context our context that the poet asks, in chapter 28: Where then shall wisdom be found? You can dig for gold, you can trawl the sea for pearls, you can buy coral and crystal and jewels with money; but you cant get wisdom that way. Indeed, we might want to add, if you spend all your time thinking about gold and pearls and crystal and money you can guarantee that you will not find wisdom.

read the rest: Wisdom in a Troubled Time

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When I interviewed the pastor of our local Unitarian Universalist church recently, I was struck by the fact that wisdom comes from fear of the Lord. Her church embraces all beliefs and religious systems, and although she is well-read and downright brilliant (educated at Yale...), she was so, so lacking in wisdom. The things she said, the connundrums she finds herself in...all the result of lacking in wisdom.
It was the first time I had seen that principle at work.