Breakfast with Solomon - Proverbs 3:19
"The LORD by wisdom founded the earth, by understanding He established the heavens"
This is an important statement doctrinally, practically, and foundationally. It states that God, who is personal, applied knowledge in a specific way as to bring about the greatest good for all those concerned and realized the connections and possible interactions between all the astronomical factors.
This statement in the proverb is used for illustrative purposes to demonstrate the effect of wisdom. It also shows that God is not asking us to do something that He Himself did not also use. It is not very often that God's actions are a practical illustration of what we should do. Usually it is because God did this or will do that you should do this other thing.
This is the Hebrew word Yahweh or the tetragrammaton; the unutterable name for God. This title for God appears 5321 times in the Old Testament for God. It is His revealed name to the people of Israel. He gives it to Moses as His personal name, intimately associated with Himself and revealing of His nature. It is a form of the verb to be. It is what Jesus was referring to when He said, "Before Abraham was born, I AM" – a direct claim to deity. This word has been transliterated in German to be Jehovah, but the Hebrew letters are YHWH.
In these statements we are being given an inside look at the planning and birth into being of our universe; peering behind the curtain of time and into the divine interaction. This proverb states that God had a number of options that were available to Him in the creation of the earth and the universe as a whole. This is the possible world’s idea that floats around in philosophical thought. God did have any number of possible worlds, but what this proverb says is that He chose by an act of His will to make this one that we are dwelling in become the actualized one because it was the wisest course. This universe and this earth met the criteria of the best application of knowledge and the highest glory for His name, as well as the greatest good for the creatures inhabiting the worlds He was creating.
This verse is fascinating that it suggests that God had options. He could have created some other world in which things would have been different. It does not tell us as much as we might like to know about these possible worlds except that God, in His infinite wisdom, did not pick any of them. He picked this one to actualize. It is significant that He had choices and that He used this new thing called wisdom to make the final decision about which world He would create. Proverbs 8:22-25 suggests that wisdom was one of the first of the newly created things. God created or brought forth this thing called applied knowledge for the greatest good for the development of a universe that was going to be actualized within a small number of dimensions. The decision to create or develop applied knowledge or wisdom necessarily preceded the actual creation of an actualized place, even though this creation occupied some small number of physical dimensions.
Wisdom was and is one of the building blocks of this world in which we live. It was a part of its planning, creation, and development; and it is a part of effective living within the perimeters of its boundaries. Solomon is trying to get us to understand that wisdom is essential to living here effectively. This is not just a technique that you should use occasionally; it is a way of living that is foundational to how the world was put together.
Think about today. Will you live at odds with wisdom and follow your own impulses and temptations, or will you live in harmony with how God made the world? Will you ask the right questions today? "Will this thing bring God glory, others’ benefit, and myself success?" or "What would make me happy?"
Now this embrace of wisdom is not just important for Christians; it is important for businessmen, politicians, students, parents, friends, husbands and wives, church officials, etc. A lack of wisdom and, therefore, a grasping at selfishness will bring a measure of destruction to these endeavors. Each of the problems in each of these arenas can be traced to a lack of wisdom. That is why God, through Solomon, screams at us: SEEK WISDOM!