Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being,
and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart. (Psalm 51:6)
In Psalm 51, David confesses his sin before God. But in the midst of his repentance, he confesses something else— that God is the source of his wisdom. God is his teacher of spiritual truth.
I was impressed by how God delights for us to know spiritual truth, and teaches it to us. I wanted to know more, and so I did a search for the Hebrew words in this verse for “teach” and “wisdom” to see if they were used together in any other passages.
There are actually sixteen passages that use both of these Hebrew words, but there were three that stood out to me as a marked contrast to David’s insight. These three were written by his son, Solomon, in the book of Ecclesiastes:
And I applied my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly. I perceived that this also is but a striving after wind. (Ecclesiates 1:17)
I turned my heart to know and to search out and to seek wisdom and the scheme of things, and to know the wickedness of folly and the foolishness that is madness. (Ecclesiastes 7:25)
When I applied my heart to know wisdom, and to see the business that is done on earth, how neither day nor night do one’s eyes see sleep, then I saw all the work of God, that man cannot find out the work that is done under the sun. However much man may toil in seeking, he will not find it out. Even though a wise man claims to know, he cannot find it out. (Ecclesiastes 8:16-17)
Solomon, near the end of his life, turned from God as the source of his wisdom to his own self. He applied his own heart to see truth, and all he saw was striving against wind, and a schizoid, embittered outlook on life. The wisest of all, and yet he lost his vision by taking his eyes off God.
What about me? Am I looking, am I listening, am I expecting God to be the true revealer of wisdom and truth to my soul? I hope I am learning David’s approach to wisdom.