If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
All true wisdom comes from God. Wisdom which honors the Lord and edifies others comes only from God. Moreover, God through His Holy Spirit and through His word, the Bible, gives us wisdom for a more abundant life in Christ Jesus our Lord. A life that is pleasing to God and fruitful for His kingdom. The wisdom spoken of in these passages by James is not a philosophical wisdom. It is not a wisdom useful only in academic circles, but a practical wisdom which brings eternal life and makes us useful for the kingdom of God. A wisdom, which shows us how to live out God’s word in our day to day lives. A wisdom which brings comfort, peace and understanding in the face of trials we know will come while living in a fallen world. A world, which is at enmity with God. God’s wisdom comes to us in many ways. First and foremost through the study of His word the Bible, which is His special revelation to us His children. The Bible is God’s special revelation to us regarding His plan of redemption and His interactions with humanity as it relates to the fulfillment of that plan. And God’s word works hand in hand with the guidance and instruction, we receive from the Holy Spirit who indwells all followers of Christ. The Holy Spirit helps to “illuminate” scripture. This means that the Holy Spirit helps us to better understand scripture in light of who Jesus is and what He has done for us.
This is why without faith in Christ Jesus our Lord, no one can truly know and understand God’s word, the Bible. And this is why God raises up godly people to pastor His people and teach others about Jesus, the Bible and living a life for God. And secondarily wisdom comes from God’s general revelation. This refers to the complexity and wonder of nature and the world around us. Our God given abilities to study and learn from God’s creation in nature should cause us to understand that there is a sovereign creator. Moreover, it should lead us to seek Him out and discover who He is. And lastly wisdom comes from prayer! God gives us guidance, discernment and understanding as the Holy Spirit speaks to our hearts and minds when we pray. Prior to our salvation, our spirit was dead in trespasses and sins. And with the many gifts of salvation, we received a new spirit which is alive to God and the things of God. And the Holy Spirit works with our new spirit to bring us wisdom and understanding from God through prayer and the study of His word. And as we talk with God and as we study His word we build our relationship with God stronger through the interactions of the Holy Spirit in our lives. And that’s what prayer is all about! Prayer is a heartfelt communication with God as a result of our relationship with Him. A relationship which has been restored through Jesus. Moreover, as we grow in Christ, prayer helps us to better align our will with God’s will making our prayers, and us more effective for His kingdom work.