Proverbs 3:13-15

Happy is the Man

13Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.

1. Happy = blessed; it is often used as an interjection. (O how happy is…)

2. The term is used 25 times in Psalms. (Ex – Ps.1:1 – blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly…)

3. Prov. 8:1-3 – Wisdom cries out to all who will hear… as in ch.1

a. Vs. 32 – Blessed is the one who keeps her ways… practices wisdom.

b. Vs. 34 – Blessed is the man who HEARS wisdom speak… watching daily… (Seeking to hear and learn more…)

c. Prov.8:36 – Whoever rejects wisdom will NOT be happy. He is sinning against his own soul… wronging himself!

d. Ex: the young boy who refuses to do his homework against the wisdom laid down by his father. He is only hurting himself! He is the one who will pay in the end…

e. Ex: wisdom says, “Obey God and you will experience blessedness; happiness.”

f. It is the fool who says that obeying God and walking the straight and narrow is boring. The fool will pay for his folly eventually.

g. The fool says, “I won’t be happy until I break away from God and do my own thing. God is too restrictive. I can’t be happy if I follow Him!”

4. Solomon has already described some of the “happiness” or “blessedness” associated with following divine wisdom.

a. 3:4 – you will find favor and good understanding in the sight of God and man!

b. 3:8 – health! Follow divine wisdom will keep a man or woman away from dangerous lifestyles. God’s wisdom leads to purity—you won’t have to worry about sexually transmitted disease. You won’t worry about cirrhosis of the liver if you follow God’s wisdom and stay away from strong drink!

c. 3:10 – Following God’s wisdom will bless you with having your needs all met.

d. 3:2 – long life too!

e. Remember, these are proverbs—not promises in each and every case. But over all, the one who follows God’s wisdom will be BLESSED.
• Wisdom will keep him from doing foolish things that could result in disease, loss of friends, or an early death.

5. Blessed is the man that finds wisdom and gets understanding!

a. This kind of wisdom is God’s wisdom.
• Man must get or find it. We do not have this kind of wisdom in ourselves.
• This wisdom comes only from God—not the wisdom of the world.

b. What a stark contrast between divine wisdom which results in happiness and the wisdom of the world which sometimes results in grief! (Ecc.1:18)

c. How do we find it? Is it lost? Is it hiding?

d. It is found recorded in God’s word. It is available for all of us.

e. BUT—not every believer actually finds it! Many believers demonstrate by the foolish decisions that they make that they do not have this wisdom!

f. It is not because they CANNOT find it. It is because they WILL NOT find it.

g. We have 66 books of Divine wisdom in our Bibles. How much time do we spend getting spiritual understanding? It’s there for the finding… but we have to open the book and READ it!

h. If we are going to GET this wisdom or FIND it—it requires diligence! (Prov.2:1-4 – seek divine wisdom as gold diggers seek gold!)

i. BLESSED is the man who finds it! There is no blessing upon the man who watches TV… or who golfs… or skis… or puts around in his workshop on his hobby. But there is a blessing upon the one who finds wisdom!

j. You want some blessing in your life? Get into God’s Word!

k. Revelation 1:3 – Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

l. GETTING God’s wisdom means more than memorizing a verse. It means OBEYING the wisdom learned! BLESSED is that man in his DEED. (James 1:25)

14For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.

1. Solomon wrote these words. He is preeminently qualified to speak on this subject. He had unimaginable wealth!

a. I Kings 9:26-28 – Solomon had gold shipped to him from all over the world… the world’s finest gold! (10:14-15)

b. I Kings 10:4-7 – This queen had her breath taken away by the extravagant wealth of Solomon! She was also taken in by his famous wisdom!
• She noted that even his servants were happy- they hear of his wisdom! (10:8)
• 10:23 – Solomon exceeded all kings of the earth in wisdom and wealth.

c. II Chron.9:20-28 – a brief overview of all the wealth brought to Solomon yearly. He was rich!

2. When Solomon spoke to his son and said that the merchandise of wisdom is better than that of gold or silver—he knew what he was talking about!

a. He was talking under divine inspiration—AND—experience!

b. In his official dealings with kings and princes of foreign lands, he no doubt came in contact with some very wealthy men. Not all wealthy men are wise. Many are quite foolish.

c. To become a king, all one had to do was to be the firstborn in the right family. That was no guarantee of wisdom!

d. No doubt Solomon knew some wealthy men who were foolish in their ways.

e. By observing Solomon came to realize that wisdom is better than wealth!

3. Merchandising = profitable

a. It is more profitable to have wisdom than gold and wealth.

b. It is even more profitable in a financial sense… on a purely materialistic sense—it is more profitable to have wisdom.

c. Which would you prefer?
• A million dollars and no wisdom? (eager to buy the Brooklyn Bridge?)
• OR no money, but the wisdom to earn a million $ a year?

d. On the news the other day they had a story about a man who won megabucks and was now in debt over his head. He lost it all gambling—and he even spent money he didn’t have!

e. It would make for an interesting book—to write about the lives of common people before and after they became instant millionaires through the lottery. Some of them would be pretty sad stories.

4. Even for the worldling—wisdom is more profitable than gold. But especially for the believer!

a. A believer might successfully accumulate wealth, but what profit is it if in the process, he loses his family? (divorce or neglect)

b. A believer might successfully accumulate wealth, but what profit is it if it causes you to forget God? (Deut. 8:11-14)

c. A believer might successfully accumulate wealth, but what profit is it if he ruins his health in the process and cannot enjoy it? (Ecc. 6:1-2)

d. A believer might successfully accumulate wealth, but what profit it is if he can’t even sleep at night worrying about it? (Ecc. 5:12)

e. A believer might successfully accumulate wealth, but what profit is it if when he stands at the Bema, he has no true riches? (Matt. 6:19)

5. Wisdom will NEVER allow us to put making money above the spiritual needs of his family… nor will he allow making money above God… nor will wisdom allow us to put earthly treasures above heavenly treasures…

a. WISDOM knows how to prioritize.

b. Wisdom knows what is really valuable.

c. The wise believer will realize that obtaining God’s wisdom is more valuable from eternity’s perspective than obtaining gold, silver, and rubies in this life.

15She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.

1. In fact, wisdom is more precious than rubies or ALL THE THINGS you could ever desire or want or imagine!

2. There is nothing that can even qualify to be put in the same category as wisdom! She is in a class by herself.

3. Paul demonstrated this in the choices he made. He practiced this truth!

a. Col. 2:3 – in Christ are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

b. Phil. 3:4-8 – Paul left a lucrative position in Judaism behind in order to pursue the knowledge of God in the person of Jesus Christ! He chose wisdom over earthly wealth and success. He is our example today.

c. Paul knew that what he left behind was not even to be compared to the knowledge of God—the wisdom of God in Christ that he found! By way of comparison, he said they were like dung!

d. The things of this world cannot even be compared to the knowledge of God… God’s wisdom…

4. If we really BELIEVE this, then it will affect the decisions we make.

a. Paul believed it—and he left his earthly success behind and CHOSE Christ.
• In one sense, Paul TRADED his earthly success for the knowledge of God.
• Solomon said the “merchandising” of wisdom is better than the merchandise of gold.
• Merchants trade and swap their goods. Paul made a good trade.
• Often we make terrible trades… lousy decisions… horrible choices.

b. If we really believe this, we too will CHOOSE Christ and the knowledge of God—Divine wisdom over the things of the world that seem so valuable.

c. Paul PRACTICED this kind of wisdom. HAPPY is he who gets wisdom!

d. Earthly success would not have provided Paul with happiness.

e. Half hearted seeking does not result in this kind of happiness. God’s wisdom must be sought with all the enthusiasm and vigor that men exert in digging for gold—for what we are looking for is far more valuable! It deserves at least that much effort to find!