· Ministry to Men, Church Renewal

The difference between wisdom and knowledge

By Steve Nailor

 “Give me wisdom and knowledge that may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?”

––2 Chronicles 1:10


“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”

–– James 1:5


“It is because of God that you are in Christ Jesus. He became wisdom from God for us. This means that he made us righteous and holy and He delivered us.”

1 Corinthians 1:30


I was asked to offer some thoughts about wisdom at a meeting of UM Men of the Annapolis District of the Baltimore-Washington Conference.

My questions were: “What is wisdom?” and “What is the difference between wisdom and knowledge?”

The words “wisdom” and “knowledge” are found throughout Scripture, but they are not synonymous.

Webster defines wisdom as “the ability to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting.”

Knowledge is defined as “information gained through experience, reasoning, or acquaintance.”

Knowledge can exist without wisdom, but wisdom cannot exist without knowledge.

Knowledge is knowing what Covid19 could potentially do to our families; wisdom involves the application of appropriate safety measures to avoid spreading the virus.

Knowledge understands the light has turned red; wisdom applies the brakes. Knowledge sees the quicksand; wisdom walks around it.

In order to obey God, we have to have knowledge of God’s commands.

Knowledge memorizes the Ten Commandments; wisdom obeys them. Knowledge learns of God; wisdom loves Him.

We need wisdom to determine how this knowledge can be applied to our lives.

Stay safe and listen for wisdom. It is a gift from God.

Steve Nailor, president

National Association of Conference Presidents of UM Men



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