Sunday, March 25, 2012

The "right" thing vs the "wise" thing.

Is there a difference, from a Christian perspective, between "doing what's right" and "doing what's wise" ? IF so, what?


  1. I wasn't in class last week when the discussion started so maybe I missed all the relevant discussion but, having been exposed to it this week, I'm not convinced the two are meaningfully different. Seems to me they are different only in being varied aspects of the same thing: The "right thing to do" is the "what", whereas the "wise thing to do" is the "why" it's so, IMHO.

  2. I'm not sure I understand the difference. Are you suggesting there'd be an answer that was the wise thing but not the right thing to do? I really don't see that the two would be seperate.


  3. Me neither, thus I said above that "I'm not convinced the two are meaningfully different." So... I think we agree then.

  4. Then why the question? That was not the topic of the lesson we had on Sunday?

  5. Not directly, correct, but it was a repeated background point and, as the day wore on, it's the one that most stuck with me -- simple as that.

    Now it could be I just misunderstand -- entirely possible and I'd be just fine if that were shown to me -- but it seemed to me sitting there yesterday that Andy was saying the two questions could yield different answers and I'd presently disagree with that... IF indeed that's what he was saying.

    Having said that, I do think "what's right?" and "what's wise?" meaningfully affect our approach to whatever issue is at hand but I'm not convinced it changes the practical result.

    "What's right?" draws focus to doing the thing independent of understanding. It doesn't eliminate understanding, but it does seem to cast understanding in an optional light.

    "What's wise?" draws focus to doing the thing BECAUSE of understanding and I'd readily agree that the latter is ultimately the better of the two questions to work from ourselves and to foster in others. So I DO agree that "what's wise?" is the better question, I'm just not sure it would ever lead to a different result and hence this discussion.

    Not to say I thought it was a bad lesson, not at all, this is just the part I found myself mulling over the rest of the day. That's all.

  6. Hey, it occurred to me that you MAY have taken this discussion as being critical of the lesson itself. Not at all. It's simply a tangent that was prompted BY the lesson but I did not bring this up to be critical of the lesson itself in any way, only that while much of the lesson seemed pretty clear-cut this particular aspect stood out as a little more open-ended and such things are, IMHO, just kinda fun to flesh out. Sometimes it leads to meaningful tangents and sometimes it just falls away as... a tangent. I meant nothing more by it than and hope I haven't offended you or anyone else, thanks.

  7. No I did not think you were being critical of the lesson. I think the question in question was What is the Wise thing to do, given my past experience, current state and future hope/dreams was not put out as an opposition to the other questions. What is moral, what is right, what is whatever but the best of these to ask yourself.


  8. Look at Solomon in the Old Testament:

    He married many different wives. He married some because he wanted to, but others for political peace. So here is the question...

    Is Solomon doing a wise thing? Yes. He is keeping Israel at peace with other nations by marrying into their royal families.

    Was he doing the right thing? No. Marrying multiple wives was a sin in God's eyes. He was doing wrong.

    Now In the New Testament it is slated that, "The wisdom of this world is foolishness in God's eyes." So is there a difference between the "wise" thing to do and the "right" thing? can clearly see this in Solomon's actions. If you are a Christian knowing this difference is a necessary key to living out your Christian walk.

    This is just a snapshot on this topic. There is much more depth you can discuss. I hope it gives some help. If not I apologize for posting this and causing confusion.