“Cunning Wisdom Poisons”

Date: 9-24-14

Text: James 3:14-16  But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth.  Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, of the devil. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.  [NIV84]

The Big Idea: Cunning wisdom spawns from a heart that is poisoned with bitter envy and selfish ambition.

My Thoughts: 

I have chosen the word, ‘cunning,’ to identify this sort of ‘wisdom’ because it spawns from a heart that is poisoned with bitter envy and selfish ambition. Perhaps not all of the world’s wisdom is such—I don’t want to paint it with too broad a brush…. But ‘cunning’ is the particular word I would use because the actions spawned from such have an appearance of wisdom, but underneath is viperous poison, maneuvering and manipulating for deeply selfish ends….

Lifestyle worshipers, have you seen this sort of ‘wisdom’ in the church, too? People bitterly envious of others who got the ‘spotlight’ or the position they didn’t? Or others who power played an issue just to get their own way? Sadly, I have, and I have also noticed like Pigpen of  the Peanuts fame, a cloud of chaos seems to follow them wherever they go. Have you found this to be so, too?

Your thoughts?

Scriptures to Renew Your Thoughts

A malicious man disguises himself with his lips, but in his heart he harbors deceit. Though his speech is charming, do not believe him, for seven abominations fill his heart. His malice may be concealed by deception, but his wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.

— Proverbs 26:24-26 (NIV84)

“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them.”

— Matthew 7:15-16 (NIV84)

Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says to them: See, I myself will judge between the fat sheep and the lean sheep. Because you shove with flank and shoulder, butting all the weak sheep with your horns until you have driven them away.

— Ezekiel 34:20-21 (NIV84)

Lord Jesus Christ, be Wisdom in me as I respond in Love to those who are poisoned with bitter envy and selfish ambition. In Your Name Amen.

Pastor Mike

“It Is Well Named”

Date: 8-22-14

Text: Proverbs 22:10 10 Throw out the mocker and strife departs, too; furthermore, quarrels and discord will end. [ISV]

The Big Idea: Offering counterpoints and different perspectives in a loving constructive way is truly wise.

My Thoughts: 

Disagreeing is not a ‘bad’ thing. But disagreeing disagreeably is. Those who love contention and intentionally play the “devil’s advocate” are no friend to Peace. And what is more fascinating: Once these contentious mockers are removed from the situation, it is strange how calm returns and discord ends…. Strife leaves with them.  

Lifestyle worshipers, know that the “devil’s advocate” is well named. While offering counterpoints and different perspectives in a loving constructive way is truly wise, when one intentionally offers counterpoints and different perspectives merely to be difficult, or worse, contentious, this is more than unwise: it is ungodly … 

How do we deal with them? To me, this is a good question because somehow they feel they are offering a ‘good’ thing, not realizing their heart is truly in the wrong place….Any suggestions?

Scriptures to Renew Your Thoughts

  But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.” He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.

— John 12:4-6 (NIV84)

   The proud and arrogant man—“Mocker” is his name; he behaves with overweening pride

 Proverbs 21:4 (NIV84)

 Whoever loves a quarrel loves sin; whoever builds a high gate invites destruction

 Proverbs 17:19 (NIV)


 Lord Jesus Christ, reduce me to Love as You instill in me Your Presence of Wisdom. Keep pride and arrogance far from me. As I offer differing perspectives, may I maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of Peace. For Your Name’s Sake, Amen.

Pastor Mike