The words in this verse, translated as “wise in heart,” are understood by the Sages as “wise about hearts,” or “wise about innermost thoughts.” This means that God knows what is in man’s hearts and judges accordingly. While man has the capacity to judge his fellow only by what is obvious to the human eye, the Lord knows what is really in a person’s heart. Job’s friends understand this in the negative, that while Job seems righteous externally, he must really have transgressed secret sins. However, the opposite is also true. Someone might seem evil on the outside, but might have good intentions in his heart. It is man’s challenge to behave like God and, instead of making assumptions solely by what meets the eye, understand that there is more in a person’s heart that might not be apparent from the outside. We are therefore called on to judge others favorably by always giving them the benefit of the doubt.

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Source: Israel in the News