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Friday, August 27, 2010

The Love of Wisdom (philo-sophy)

by Larry Fox
Wisdom is one of the seven gifts of the God’s Holy Spirit poured upon the man and woman of Faith. Wisdom is the gift which brings order to all things including the other six (6) gifts (Fear of the Lord, Piety, Understanding, Knowledge, Counsel, & Fortitude).
Wisdom is the gift which enables man and woman of faith to grasp the purpose of things as intended by their Creator.
O God of my fathers and Lord of mercy, who made all things by your word, and by your wisdom formed man to have dominion over all creatures that you have made and to rule the world in holiness and righteousness and to pronounce judgment in the uprightness of soul, grant to me the Wisdom that sits by your throne and do not reject me from among your servants… Book of Wisdom 9:1-6, 9-11.
A person with the Gift of Wisdom recognizes the order and purpose of earthly and heavenly things and judges what is good and what is evil accordingly:
• And God said: “Let us make man in our own image and likeness.” – Genesis 1:24.
• “God blessed them and said to them be fruitful and multiply and subdue the earth.” – Genesis 1:28
• “A man shall leave father and mother and cling to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.” –Genesis 2:24.
• “Let your love be sincere, hate what is evil and cling to what is good.” – Romans 12:9.
• “Jews demand miraculous signs, and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ Crucified: a stumbling block for the Jews and foolishness to Gentiles.” – 1 Corinthians 1:22.

Without this Gift of Wisdom, man and woman are prone to live in foolishness: both in theory and in practice:
• Foolishness in knowledge, understanding, and the practice of counsel.
• Foolishness in fear of the lord and the practice of piety.
• And foolishness in the practice of fortitude.
For the fool perseveres in acts of chaos, invents gods, and practices superstition and witchcraft, and judges things based upon mal-adjusted emotions leading to the malpractice of judgment: teaching GOOD to be EVIL and EVIL to be GOOD.
For into a malicious soul, wisdom shall not enter; nor dwell in the body that is subjected by sin. For the holy spirit of discipline will flee deceit, and be remove from thoughts that are without understanding, and will not live in the soul of man when unrighteousness enters in (Wisdom 1: 4).
The Gift of Wisdom comes to those moved by the Holy Spirit to Faith in God. [Reference Topic on Faith]
The Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; and there is good understanding to all that practice it. Piety towards God is the beginning of discernment; but the ungodly will not tolerate wisdom and instruction (Proverbs 1: 7).
The Gift of Wisdom is manifested within the Deposit of Faith (Oral and Written) which is preserved and guarded by the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. Jesus Christ and His Cross is the Wisdom of God, foolishness to the Greek and a Scandal to the Jew.
God chose us in Jesus Christ before the world began to be holy and blameless in his sight. He predestined us to be his adopted sons through Jesus Christ; such was his will and pleasure, that all might praise the glorious favor he has bestowed upon us in his beloved son. In him and through his blood, we have been redeemed and our sins forgiven so immeasurable generous is God’s favor to us. God has given us the wisdom to understand fully the mystery, the plan he was to decree in Christ. A plan to be carried out in Christ, in the fullness of time, to bring all things into one in him, in the heavens and on earth (Ephesians 1:3-10).
So the purpose and ordering of human life is to live in a holy communion with God as adopted sons and daughters – and that is what we are in Christ Jesus. To order one’s life as an adopted son and a daughter of God is to Live and Love Wisdom.
Virtue, Justice, and Wisdom
On the natural level, Virtue is the art and practice of governing one’s actions, and the ordering of one’s passions. On a supernatural level, Virtue is the art and practice of goodness. God’s Grace and Gifts build upon nature not destroying it. As such, through God’s Grace and Gifts, virtue becomes the art of governing and ordering one’s passions for good and not vice or evil. A person of faith is tutored in the practice of virtue while reading Sacred Scripture and the Lives of the Saints. The heroes of virtue are the Saints- who received the Crown of glory at journey’s end.
There are moral virtues and theological virtues. Four pivotal virtues for moral behavior and the governance of societies are prudence, temperance, justice, and fortitude.
The three theological virtues are faith, hope, and charity.
The Gift of Wisdom is foundational for the development and practice of virtue. Actions based upon wisdom promote virtuous habits. Discernment and counsel which flow from wisdom promote the common good.
All of man’s actions are moral and directed towards either virtue or vice. Conscience - the director of man’s actions - is the exercise of judgment based upon knowledge. But what knowledge: God’s Revelation, the World, the Flesh, or the pomp’s of the Devil?
It is sophomoric to say, “My actions are based upon my conscience” as if conscience was the canon for validating one’s actions. Conscience - if free and truly exercised - is objectively the cause of one’s action and as such the condition for being properly judged. If conscience is not free, then the cause of one’s actions is subjective.
Jesus said: “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin, but since you claim you can see, your guilt remains” (John 9:41).
Without the Gift of Wisdom, vice builds upon the foundation of foolishness. Actions based upon foolishness promote habits which are destructive. Discernment and counsel which flow from vice, decrease the common good and society moves toward moral anarchy.
If there was a phrase which most aptly described the “progressive movement” in the Church and in Secular Society it would be “vice progressing towards moral anarchy.” Moral anarchy flows from rebellion, which is described in Divine Revelation as Witchcraft (Sorcery). It is the opposite of Order, the opposite of Wisdom, the opposite of Divine Revelation and Satanic in origin. The fruit of the progressive movement in the Church is evidenced by the very many and costly scandals.
The Gift of Wisdom is critical for those who teach, judge, and govern in the home and in secular and religious society. Without wisdom the foundations of the soul, family life, communities, and societies will crumble and be destroyed.
In the Lord I have taken refuge. How can you say to my soul: Fly like a bird to the mountain. See the wicked bracing their bow; they are fixing their arrows on the string to shoot upright men in the dark. FOUNDATIONS ONCE DETROYED, WHAT CAN THE JUST DO (Psalm 10)?
The key stratagem to the progressive movement is teach and to legislate that there is no purpose for things, no virtue, all ideas are equally valid, nothing can be distinguished, and the bulwark of their abuse is “Civil Rights.” Observe those who speak of justice and civil rights, while at the same time despise moral truth, natural law, and Divine Revelation. Strange to hear from people who lie and break the laws of entry into this Country, the cry for Civil Rights.
How does Justice support Virtue?
“God said let there be light and saw that is was good.”
Example 1: On a natural level, the function and therefore the virtue of the eye is to see. The doctor who supports the virtue of the eye practices justice. The doctor who diminishes the virtue of the eye practices in-justice. Read Plato’s Republic!
Example 2: On a supernatural level, the virtue of the eye is to see the beauty and providence of God in all His works and to be a window of goodness and truth to the soul. In order to Glorify God with one’s eyes, the sense(s) need to sanctify. The person who teaches the soul to sanctify their senses by fasting, prayer, and the reading of good literature practices justice.
Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent and praise worthy – think about such things (Philippians 4:8).
The person who diminishes beauty with profanity, stirring up the concupiscence of the eye with lust, greed, avarice, murder, sloth, anger, and deception practices in-justice. The person who strives against sanctity and sanctification practices in-justice.
NOTE: Religious teaching which diminishes the role of sanctification as something peripheral to salvation and justification promotes in-justice.
Virtue, Goodness, and Human Life
My friend once asked me, what is the nature of good? The rich man called Jesus good and Jesus replied: “Why do you call me good, only God is good. “
God is the origin and nature of good. If one’s actions have their origins in God then they are good. Since God is immutable, then good is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). As such, what was good in the beginning (Genesis) remains good and what was identified as not good is today (SHOCKING) not good.
Creation, order, generation of life, marriage between man and woman, fruitfulness in marriage, friendship with God and obedience to God’s word were identified as good in the beginning.
In a phenomenological sense, when Adam and Eve put their hands to the “Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil,” what they set into motion was the disastrous notion that THEY (WE) COULD DISCERN AND KNOW GOOD AND EVIL APART FROM GOD’s WORD. Is that not the perverted standard for today, the litmus test for progressive and unwise judgment?
God is love (agape) and he who abides in love abides in God and God in him. This love is good for its origins are in God: Love is patient, kind, does not envy, does not boast, is not proud, is not rude, is not self-seeking, is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrong, does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres (1 Corinthians 13: 4-7).
But the fruit of the Holy Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control (Galatians 5: 22).
In opposition, we find disordered love to be impatient, unkind, envies, boasts, is proud, is rude, is self-seeking, and is easily angered, it keeps record of wrong, delights in evil and rejoices with the lie. Evil always destroys, always promotes infidelity, and always leads to despair, and always takes the easy road towards death.
The acts of sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery, idolatry and witchcraft, hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions and envy, drunkenness, orgies and the like. I warn you as I did before, that those who live this will not inherit the Kingdom of God (Galatians 5: 19).
I responded to my friend: “God is good, Human Life is good, and everything which seeks to promote and preserve human life from natural conception to natural death is good. Everything which deviates from this simple path leads to eventual evil and is not good. Tiny and continual steps away from the proven and revealed path of goodness, eventually leads to being lost.”
So simple and yet apart from God’s Gift of Wisdom and His Word impossible to grasp and live.

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