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August 21, 1995

Even the Wise Are Not Right All the Time

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There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins. Do not pay attention to every word people say, or you may hear your servant cursing you—-for you know in your heart that many times you yourself have cursed others. ECCLESIASTES 7:20-22
Seeking wise council is prudent; leaving all our decision-making to others is not.
Even the wisest counselors are wrong sometimes, according to Solomon, and sometimes their judgment is even clouded by sin.
Does this mean that we shouldn’t ask wise counselors for their advice in situations in which we’re not sure what to do? Of course not. We need people to help us discern what God is telling us, but we don’t need to use them as a substitute for our own sense of what the Holy Spirit wants us to do.
Someday we will stand before God and He will ask us to account for our actions and decisions. When He asks why we did or did not do something, the right answer on our part cannot be that we simply did what wise counselors told us to do. The only correct answer is that we did what we felt God wanted us to do, and in the process of figuring that out, we consulted those who were wise. We need to take the words of others seriously but with a grain of salt.
And for sure, we need to remember that even the wisest of the wise aren’t right all the time. Only God has that distinction.

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