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Wisdom's Tower

Updated: Jul 6

Blog title card; topic is Proverbs 18
Wisdom's Tower

Are you reading the Proverbs that corresponds with the day of the month? If not, you should. There is always something new for the Holy Spirit to teach us even from passages of Scripture we revisit every month. Reading a chapter of Proverbs each day is also an opportunity to learn the general themes of each proverb. Consider Proverbs 18. The content of the chapter is centered on verse 10: “the name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous runneth into it and is safe.” This verse is the focal point of most of the chapter. For this reason, I’ve entitled Proverbs 18 “Wisdom’s Tower.”

Before we explore how verse 10 connects the rest of the chapter, allow me to briefly explain this verse individually. If you would like a more comprehensive explanation of this verse, I have preached a full length sermon on this verse. In brief, the verse instructs us to do some spiritual cardio and run to the strong tower, which the verse identifies as the name of the Lord. There, in that strong tower, is safety. Running to the Lord is obviously the right thing to do, especially when we are promised strength from it. However, so few people obey Solomon’s instruction in their moments of crisis.

You may ask who specifically is the name of the Lord. The answer is that it is Jesus of Nazareth, the Messiah, the Christ. He is our Lord and Master. When you run to that name, you will find He indeed is a strong tower.

Strong towers offer two advantages. The first, safety, is specifically mentioned in Proverbs 18:10. The second is that a tall, strong tower also offers perspective. Those looking from the top can see much farther than they could on ground level. When you run for help to the strong tower of Christ, you gain a respite from your micro, ground-level perspective and you gain the advantage of God’s macro perspective. The gospel and the Word of God provide a better vantage point to assess your situation. You can survey the circumstances to the north, south, east, and west now. Practically speaking, that is what reading the Word of God will do for you. It will enable you to stop thinking about yourself and your situation with a temporal perspective. Instead, when you look at that same situation from the advantage of Scripture’s eternal perspective, even though your situation remains the same, your heart will be able to change. The angst will disappear and, because of the Lord’s help, you can face that situation with a sense of safety. The name of the Lord provides both objective and subjective safety because, as the verse says, He is that strong tower.

Despite the promises, even God’s people do not run to the Lord’s name sometimes. Proverbs 18 lists many excuses for not obeying verse 10. In verse 11, the excuse maker says, “I’m rich!” This wealthy man tries to solve his problems with his money. His excuse is, “I don’t need a strong tower because I have a ‘strong city’ of my wealth.” Sadly, temporal riches is what he turns to.

Another excuse for not running to the strong tower is in verse 9. The excuse maker claims running to the Lord is too hard. “You want me to run?” he says. “Run where? You want me to read my Bible and apply heavenly wisdom to my circumstances? No, I’d rather be slothful and hang out with my brother, who is 'the great waster' (v. 9). Together, we’re gonna whine about and wallow in our hopelessness.”

Verses 6-8 describe another excuse maker. This one is distracted by the hurts of the past. “I’m not running to the strong tower,” he says. “I’ve been wounded by a talebearer” (v, 8). “I’ve been wounded by the mouth of a fool” (vv. 6-7). To point out that this is an excuse is not to deny that those wounds are not valid or real. Words often hurt deeply. They can go down into “the inner-most parts of the belly” (v. 8). Verse 14 describes a wounded spirit that has not yet recovered from the hurtful words and actions of others. The emotional pain may seem unbearable.

Unfortunately, people often use their wounds as an excuse for not running to the strong tower of the Lord Jesus. After all, the talebearer might have been a Christian person. Since the person was hurt by Christians, they reject running to Christ. However, confusing Christ and Christians is often the way they rationalize their excuse.

Last, consider the benefits experienced of those who run to that strong tower. Some reject the excuses of “I’m rich, so I don’t have to run”; or "I’m lazy so I won’t run”; or "I’m wounded so I can’t run.” And so should you. Stop making excuses. If will simply run to the strong tower with a believing heart, there you will experience “a friend that sticketh closer than a brother” (v. 24). Remember how verse 10 refers to “the name of the Lord.” Jesus is that friend that sticks closer than a brother. “Friend” is one of the names by which we know Him.

Those who run to the strong tower find other benefits as well. Christ offers  a “wellspring of wisdom as a flowing brook” (v. 4). In fact another one of “the names of the Lord” recorded in this chapter gives Jesus the title of the “wellspring of wisdom.” Accessing the benefits of knowing Christ this way require work. Verse 1 says, “Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom.” In order to make it through a difficult day, you must separate yourself from the people around you and the problems you’re facing and get alone with God to seek and “intermeddle” with wisdom. This is what it means to run to that strong tower. If we will put in the effort to run to wisdom’s tower, we will certainly find safety. God has promised.


The above article was written by James C. Johnson. He is the pastor of NorthStone Baptist Church in Pensacola, FL. To offer him your feedback, comment below or email us at

Every Tuesday, SFL publishes relevant Bible-based content. Check back next Tuesday to read the next SFL article.


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