16 Behold, I am sending you out like sheep in the midst of wolves; be wary and wise as serpents, and be innocent (harmless, guileless, and without falsity) as doves.
Matthew 10:16 AMPC
Be wise as serpents
Jesus tells the disciples that they should be wise as serpents and innocent and truthful as doves. In the garden of Eden the serpent, who was controlled by satan, was cunning and tricked Eve into eating the fruit.
3 Now the serpent was more subtle and crafty than any living creature of the field which the Lord God had made. And he [Satan] said to the woman, Can it really be that God has said, You shall not eat from every tree of the garden?
Genesis 3:1 AMPC
The serpent used craftiness to deceive and trick Eve into sin. Jesus wants the disciples to use wisdom without compromising truth or their integrity. We can walk in greater wisdom given to us by the Holy Spirit as Stephen did.
10 But they were not able to resist the intelligence and the wisdom and [the inspiration of] the Spirit with which and by Whom he spoke.
Acts 6:10 AMPC
God can give us wisdom on how to minister to people. He can give us wisdom on how to work at school, play sports, and be successful on our jobs. If we ask the Lord, He will freely give to us. When we ask of the Lord to give us wisdom, we MUST believe and not doubt!
5 If any of you is deficient in wisdom, let him ask of the giving God [Who gives] to everyone liberally and ungrudgingly, without reproaching orfaultfinding, and it will be given him.
6 Only it must be in faith that he asks with no wavering (no hesitating, no doubting). For the one who wavers (hesitates, doubts) is like the billowing surge out at sea that is blown hither and thither and tossed by the wind.
7 For truly, let not such a person imagine that he will receive anything [he asks for] from the Lord,
James 1:5-7 AMPC
God has given me wisdom on how to reach more people with the Gospel and also when I am out evangelizing. I ask the Lord to lead me and He does. I don't share everything that the Lord teaches me on how to reach people because sometimes it isn't meant for me to say. It is just meant for me to walk it out.
The Lord will give us wisdom on how and when to speak to people when we evangelize without compromising the truth. If we use wisdom but compromise the truth, then we have become ineffective.
People can be set free when they hear the whole truth.
31 So Jesus said to those Jews who had believed in Him, If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples.
32 And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free.
John 8:31-32 AMPC