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In the Bible is there any mention of how smart or stupid large groups of people are?

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I'm not aware of any, but if there was one, you'd probably find it in Proverbs. – Mason Wheeler Sep 9 '11 at 21:05
That is... an interesting question. – Richard Sep 9 '11 at 21:05

2 Answers 2

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Proverbs 11:14:

For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through many advisers.

I'm not sure I would really use this to make a case for 'crowdsourcing' though.

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I was looking for this verse to support my to support my statement of a few sound counselors, but all I could find in Proverbs just then was the stuff about having a friend to help you up. Good find, but you are right that this isn't an argument for crowd-sourcing wisdom! – Caleb Sep 9 '11 at 21:24
This is a good one. Thanks! – Maxim V. Pavlov Sep 9 '11 at 21:31
@MaximV.Pavlov: This verse should NOT be used to say that the Bible says wisdom comes from crowds. It doesn't mean that, and even the OP noted that. Please be careful not to twist bits of Scripture into saying what you want them to say. – Caleb Sep 9 '11 at 21:41
Recently a number of studies have been conducted, that experiment on collective wisdom. And the fact of its' existence is almost indisputable now. I wanted to know if "the main book" mentions anything about such phenomenon. – Maxim V. Pavlov Sep 9 '11 at 21:52

No, not really. Half the time 'crowds' are mentioned the word is basically synonymous with 'mob' and the other half it's just a big group of people.

There is advice about seeking counsel from wise friends. The company you keep is important, and there are lots of stories (both good and bad) to show that. Most importantly, the Bible says that true wisdom always starts with knowing and rightly fearing the Lord, and that any understanding comes after that.

Proverbs 9:10 (ESV)
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.

As Christians our source of wisdom should always be first and foremost God's word, and having a few sound counselors to help us in understanding it rightly. If we do not know and fear God it cannot be said that we are wise.

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Thank you. But this is terrible. – Maxim V. Pavlov Sep 9 '11 at 21:11
@Maxim: How is this terrible? – Flimzy Sep 9 '11 at 21:13
@Maxim: I think you have a gross misunderstanding of the term "fear of the Lord" – Flimzy Sep 9 '11 at 21:33
@Maxim: It's generally understood that "fear of God" doesn't mean literal fear-as-in-being-afraid, but rather respect. – Mason Wheeler Sep 9 '11 at 21:33
What is the "fear" of God? – Caleb Sep 9 '11 at 21:40

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