In the opening pages of the Bible, God creates a garden, and right in the center is the tree of life. God gives humans living breath, and with this tree he offers eternal life. In contrast to this gift stands the tree of knowing good and bad, and eating from it, God warns, causes death. The two trees pose a vital question to humanity: Will we rely on God for wisdom and eternal life, or will we defy God’s warnings and define life by our own understanding?
Today’s news is full of people claiming that they know what is good and bad. And there is a strong temptation to come up with our own assessments as well. But when we do, it leads to shame, fear, broken relationships, and ultimately death. In this week’s Bible Study, we’ll explore what it takes to avoid the false trees of life and live into what’s real.
How did this video expand your view of the tree of life?
Proverbs is a letter from a wise father to his son. He speaks of the life-giving power of God’s wisdom and compares it to the tree of life, warning of the dangers of proudly ignoring godly wisdom. (Note: Throughout Proverbs, God’s wisdom is personified as a woman, so that’s what “she” and “her” refer to in vv. 13-18.)
With all the good news that God’s wisdom holds, why do you think it’s so hard to follow it? Why do we so often choose to live by our own limited understanding?
Compare verse 7 with Genesis 3:2-7. What do you observe? How can our eyes be deceived when defining good and bad?
Consider a time in life when you followed God’s wisdom even though it defied your own understanding (see verses 5-8). What was that like?
Picture yourself resting under the tree of life, basking in God’s wisdom. Pray and ask God to fill you with his wisdom, so you can be a tree of life for others (you can also check out Proverbs 15:4).