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Showing posts from July, 2015

Deep Thoughts

Proverbs 10:1-12
July 19, 2015
First Presbyterian Church, Sterling IL
Christina Berry

We’re continuing with our series on wisdom literature this week with our third and final selection from the book of Proverbs. It is believed that this particular section of the book was used for instruction in some sort of classroom or school. These sayings were directed toward the young, to teach them how to make wise choices. You’ll notice in this section that the proverbs are often statements of contrast – a wise person does this, but a foolish person does that. They contrast wisdom and foolishness, and righteousness and wickedness. It’s helpful to remember as you hear these that wisdom and righteousness always go together. You can’t be wise without being righteous. but you can do righteous things in foolish ways, or foolish things in righteous ways. In other words, we are to aim for the dual traits of righteousness and wisdom.

Let’s listen for God’s wisdom teaching in Proverbs 10: 1-12

1 The proverbs o…

Earth Wisdom

Proverbs 8:22-36 July 12, 2015 First Presbyterian Church, Sterling IL Christina Berry
Last Sunday we experienced the first part of Proverbs eight, where we encountered the poetic image of Woman Wisdom. That imagery showed us a personification of wisdom as a woman who meets us in all the public places of our lives – on the heights, beside the road, at the city gates, at our doors, She calls out to us loudly and her voice speaks of the goodness of her path, the benefits of righteous living and the deep assurance that following in her way is walking in life and light.

This week, Woman Wisdom again speaks to us, in the remainder of this long poem that is the eighth chapter of Proverbs. But no longer is Lady Wisdom in the loud and busy urban setting of last week; now she is at the beginning of time and the creation of the cosmos, alongside the Creator who brings order out of chaos. Let’s listen for earth wisdom in today’s reading from Proverbs 8:22-36

The Lord created me at the beginning* o…

The Voice

Image from
Proverbs 8:1-11 July 5, 2014 First Presbyterian Church, Sterling IL Christina Berry
This week is the third in our series drawing our texts from the books of the Bible that are known as wisdom literature. In the 66 books of the Bible, we find a range of literary genres – history, poetry, prophecy, letters, and wisdom. Proverbs is an anthology of wise sayings, but it is not a random collection of Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations of ancient history.

Throughout the book, several poetic themes and metaphors arise again and again. One of them is the personification of wisdom as a woman. In much the same way, our country, the United States of America, is personified as Columbia, a woman. That imagery is reflected in Lady Liberty, the beloved statue who lifts her torch at the gateway to America, welcoming immigrants, strangers, and travelers to this country.

In Proverbs, this image of wisdom as a…