Wisdom will never be attractive to the world, but it's forever worth pursuing with all your might.
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Proverbs 8 (ESV)
1 Does not wisdom call? Does not understanding raise her voice?
2 On the heights beside the way,
at the crossroads she takes her stand;
3 beside the gates in front of the town,
at the entrance of the portals she cries aloud:
4 “To you, O men, I call, and my cry is to the children of man.
5 O simple ones, learn prudence;
O fools, learn sense.
for I will speak noble things,
and from my lips will come what is right,
my mouth will utter truth;
wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
8 All the words of my mouth are righteous;
there is nothing twisted or crooked in them.
9 They are all straight to him who understands, and right to those who find knowledge.
my instruction instead of silver,
and knowledge rather than choice gold,
11 for wisdom is better than jewels,
and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.
12 “I, wisdom,
dwell with prudence,
and I find knowledge and discretion.
13 The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil.
Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate.
have counsel and sound wisdom;
I have insight;
I have strength.
15 By me kings reign, and rulers decree what is just;
16 by me princes rule, and nobles, all who govern justly.
17 I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently find me.
18 Riches and honor are with me, enduring wealth and righteousness.
19 My fruit is better than gold, even fine gold,
and my yield than choice silver.
20 I walk
in the way of righteousness,
in the paths of justice,
21 granting an inheritance to those who love me, and filling their treasuries.
22 “The Lord possessed me at the beginning of his work, the first of his acts of old.
23 Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the earth.
24 When there were no depths I was brought forth,
when there were no springs abounding with water.
the mountains had been shaped,
before the hills,
I was brought forth,
26 before he had made
the earth with its fields,
or the first of the dust of the world.
he established the heavens, I was there;
when he drew a circle on the face of the deep,
28 when he made firm the skies above,
when he established the fountains of the deep,
29 when he assigned to the sea its limit,
so that the waters might not transgress his command,
when he marked out the foundations of the earth,
30 then I was beside him, like a master workman,
and I was daily his delight, rejoicing before him always,
31 rejoicing in his inhabited world and delighting in the children of man.
32 “And now, O sons, listen to me:
blessed are those who keep my ways.
33 Hear instruction and be wise, and do not neglect it.
34 Blessed is the one who listens to me,
watching daily at my gates,
waiting beside my doors.
whoever finds me
and obtains favor from the Lord,
36 but he who fails to find me
all who hate me love death.”
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Proverbs 8 Summary
The wise father, who's been teaching his son in these opening chapters of Proverbs, knows there are two woman vying for his son's attention. Yesterday, in chapter 7, we met the first woman, a seductive woman, dressed like a prostitute with crafty intent (7:10).
In chapter 8 we hear from Lady Wisdom, calling upon people to cling to her counsel and sound wisdom... insight... and strength (v14). While the world rushes after silver and gold, they miss that which is more valuable: wisdom's instruction (v10).
When we think of how the Bible describes creation, we often think of the opening chapters of Genesis, and not the book of Proverbs. But Lady Wisdom makes a stunning claim in v22-31: she was the very first thing that God created!
Finding wisdom must be your primary focus in life, because whoever finds wisdom finds life and obtains favor from the Lord (v35). Understand that you will attach yourself to one of the two women in Proverbs 7 & 8 - the seductive temptress, or Lady Wisdom. There's no other choice. The chapter ends with a solemn warning: he who fails to find [wisdom] injures himself; all who hate [wisdom] love death (v36).
All through history, people have looked for wisdom in all the wrong places. The ancient Greeks tried to look past the illusion of reality. Eastern religions teach people to find wisdom from within, and modern day philosophy denies the existence of objective wisdom.
But Proverbs 8 helps us understand that wisdom is found in having a right relationship with God. God delights in wisdom (v30), so when you come to God in Christ, He gladly gives you the wisdom that He delights in, as well as the vast benefits that come from living in wisdom.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our wise Father, who delights in wisdom (v30)
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray for the strength to pursue wisdom in all you do.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: