More Words of “Wisdom”

–By Ben Gilmore

“The fear (reverence) of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom….” [ Psalm 111:10 ]

If that be so, does it not follow that — An irreverent teacher cannot produce a “wise” student? The public school system in America has been made “irreverent” by law!

I praise the Lord for the reverent teachers struggling under the yoke of an irreverent master (the dictates and restrictions of the Public School system). It remains true, the system has done an efficient job of separating America’s children from the principles of their parents, grand parents and great grandparents!

ONLY the removal of national, state, and county education bureaucracies AND a return to neighborhood schools, answerable only to neighborhood voters will save our public school system.

But God is faithful! We have a large body of home-school parents who choose not to place the responsibility of “raising up their child” in irreverent hands. These home-school teachers are predominantly reverent. From whence will the Lord find wise leaders in the next generation?

A word about Noah Webster (1758 – 1843)

His life work was the “American Dictionary if the English Language” published in 1828.

“In my view the Christian religion is the most important and one of the first things in which all children, under a free government, ought to be instructed. … No truth is more evident in my mind than that the Christian religion must be the basis of any government intended to secure the rights and privileges of a free people. …” [Noah Webster]

“Today when the biblical basis for education is under systematic attack we need to capitalize upon the availability of the first American dictionary — the only dictionary in the world to, ‘draw water from the wells of salvation‘ — to utilize God’s written word as a key to the meaning of words. Historically it documents the degree to which the Bible was America’s basic text book in all fields.” [Rosalie Slater 1967, cofounder Foundation for American Christian Education (FACE)]

Upon its publication, Webster’s 1828 became the standard of excellence in the English speaking world. People in the mother country were amazed that such scholarship could originate in the “rustic back woods” of colonial America!

[The following is copied and pasted from Webster’s 1828 [high lights are mine]]

WISDOM, n. s as z. [G. See Wise.]

1. The right use or exercise of knowledge; the choice of laudable ends, and of the best means to accomplish them. This is wisdom in act, effect, or practice. If wisdom is to be considered as a faculty of the mind, it is the faculty of discerning or judging what is most just, proper and useful, and if it is to be considered as an acquirement, it is the knowledge and use of what is best, most just, most proper, most conducive to prosperity or happiness. Wisdom in the first sense, or practical wisdom, is nearly synonymous with discretion. I differs somewhat from prudence, in this respect; prudence is the exercise of sound judgment in avoiding evils; wisdom is the exercise of sound judgment either in avoiding evils or attempting good. Prudence then is a species, of which wisdom is the genus.
Wisdom gained by experience, is of inestimable value.
It is hoped that our rulers will act with dignity and wisdom; that they will yield every thing to reason, and refuse every thing to force.

2. In Scripture, human learning; erudition; knowledge of arts and sciences.
Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians. Acts 7.

3. Quickness of intellect; readiness of apprehension; dexterity in execution; as the wisdom of Bezel and Aholiab. Exodus 31.

4. Natural instinct and sagacity. Job 39.

5. In Scripture theology, wisdom is true religion; godliness; piety; the knowledge and fear of God, and sincere and uniform obedience to his commands. This is the wisdom which is from above. Psalm 90. Job 28.

6. Profitable words or doctrine. Psalm 37.
The wisdom of this world, mere human erudition; or the carnal policy of men, their craft and artifices in promoting their temporal interests; called also fleshly wisdom. 1 Corinthians 2. 2 Corinthians 1.

The wisdom of words, artificial or affected eloquence; or learning displayed in teaching. 1 Corinthians 1 and 2.

Did you ever enjoy sitting up in bed of an evening and reading a dictionary! I have, with Noah Webster’s 1828! This important book has been republished by FACE. Their web site is easily searched out.

Here is an interesting project. Suppose you were assigned to study something, say “mathematics”. Begin with Webster’s 1828 definition. Underline the key words. List and look up their definitions. In each case, underline the key words. After a few cycles you will have the vocabulary of your subject! In this case, the vocabulary is in three categories: quantities, operations, measures. Next, use a Strong’s or other exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Look up the key words in your subject’s vocabulary. This will give you the biblical basis for your subject. (Often, I have found the first and last biblical references to be the most significant!)

Another significance of such an authoritative dictionary — When studying our founding documents, we have definitions contemporary with their meaning at the time they were written. Languages change over time.

Suppose “Jane” and “Sally” are college room mates. Jane receives a letter from “Mr. It”. She opens if with trembling fingers. “Sally” is impatient, “Well! What did he say?” “Jane” presses the letter to her heart, “He loves me!”

In truth, “Mr. It” wrote her about his football practice, but “Jane” read into it what she wanted it to say. She might as well have written the letter to herself. It has no value unless it is read for the meaning of the one that wrote it! Study our founding documents with an 1828 by your side! Our laws have no value unless interpreted by the meaning of those who wrote them!

For His-story & Government!!!

Ben Gilmore
ACH Study Groups

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