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CHAPTER 8 Mar. 30 
Wisdom Personified
Doesn’t wisdom cry out? Doesn’t understanding raise her voice? 2On the top of high places by the way, where the paths meet, she stands. 3Beside the gates, at the entry of the city, at the entry doors, she cries aloud: 4To you people I call! I send my voice to the sons of mankind. 5You simple, understand prudence. You fools, be of an understanding heart. 6Hear, for I will speak excellent things. The opening of my lips is for right things. 7For my mouth speaks truth. Wickedness is an abomination to my lips. 8All the words of my mouth are in righteousness. There is nothing crooked or perverse in them. 9They are all plain to him who understands, right to those who find knowledge. 10Receive my instruction rather than silver; knowledge rather than choice gold. 11For wisdom is better than rubies. All the things that may be desired can’t be compared to it.  12I, wisdom, have made prudence my dwelling. Find out knowledge and discretion. 13The fear of Yahweh is to hate evil. I hate pride, arrogance, the evil way, and the perverse mouth. 14Counsel and sound knowledge are mine. I have understanding and power. 15By me kings reign, and princes decree justice. 16By me princes rule; nobles, and all the righteous rulers of the earth. 17I love those who love me. Those who seek me diligently will find me. 18With me are riches, honour, enduring wealth, and prosperity. 19My fruit is better than gold, yes, than fine gold; my yield than choice silver. 20I walk in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of justice; 21that I may give wealth to those who love me. I fill their treasuries.  22Yahweh possessed me in the beginning of His work, before His deeds of old. 23I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, before the earth existed. 24When there were no depths, I was brought forth, when there were no springs abounding with water. 25Before the mountains were settled in place, before the hills, I was brought forth; 26while as yet He had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the beginning of the dust of the world. 27When He established the skies, I was there; when He set a circle on the surface of the deep, 28when He established the clouds above, when the springs of the deep became strong, 29when He gave to the sea its boundary, that the waters should not violate His commandment, when He marked out the foundations of the earth; 30then I was the craftsman by His side. I was a delight day by day, always rejoicing before Him, 31rejoicing in His whole world. My delight was with the sons of men.  32Now therefore, my sons, listen to me, for blessed are those who keep my ways. 33Hear instruction, and be wise. Don’t refuse it. 34Blessed is the man who hears me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at my door posts. 35For whoever finds me finds life, and will obtain favour from Yahweh. 36But he who sins against me wrongs his own soul. All those who hate me love death. 


8:11 Often Solomon’s Proverbs bring out the tension between wealth and wisdom, and the need to choose wisdom (see too 16:16). But whilst he was inspired to write this, and true as it all was, it is inevitable that Solomon said all this with his mind on the way that he had rejected wealth for wisdom when in his youth he was asked by God for his wish (1 Kings 3:11,12). He thought that his right choice in early life [cp. Christian baptism] justified him in later loving wealth rather than wisdom. He taught that wisdom filled the treasuries of the wise (:21)- just as his treasuries were filled with wealth. Yet in his old age in Ecclesiastes he says that he amassed wealth for himself to see if he could find fulfilment in it- and he seems to have done that because now in his younger days he thought that amassing wealth was justified because he loved the possession of wisdom. Many a middle aged businessman, baptized in his youth and knowing God’s truths very well in theory, has made just the same tragic mistake.
8:32 Now therefore, my sons, listen to me- These are words attributed to wisdom, but they are the words Solomon uses about his own instruction of his sons in 5:7. Solomon came to assume that he personally was wisdom personified. He had been given wisdom, but the very possession of it led him to assume that he was somehow infallible and spiritually invincible. This was his downfall.  The fact we may possess God’s Truth doesn’t mean that we personally are thereby infallible in every aspect of life. We hold those truths in clay, fallible vessels (2 Cor. 4:7).