“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” (James 1:5–8, KJV)
I remember hearing how a pastor a few years back wrote a sermon in which he deduced that water was the Biblical metaphor for instability. He found several passages, and cited them in the sermon. As he was sermon, I kept thinking about the Lord saying out of our depths would flow living waters… which if his conclusions were right, was not a good thing!
There’s such a thing as hasty study, and arriving at wrong conclusions. James literally lends itself to wrong study.
In this case, the sight of a troubled ocean, tossing something to and fro, does come readily to mind. While that pastor made an error (all the more embarrassing since it was preached at a Pastor’s conference), in this case it plays out as the intended meaning.
Nor does this passage mean all Christians should be democrats. The Democratic party of the United States has shown over the last 30 years it’s hostile to the very things of God, so to the person who quoted that to me to try to explain we should side with the party that outlawed prayer in schools, favors abortion, and tries to shut down any public mention of God anywhere… yeah, I don’t think that’s a valid conclusion.
Do you have enough wisdom? No? Ask. It’s one of those automatic “yes” answers you get from God. Literally, God will make you wise beyond your years if you ask often enough.
Let’s make that a priority as we go through this book this month! “Lord, grant me wisdom, that I may cease being a fool.”