FINISH HIM! Here Solomon is hitting his punches, and to win the bout he brings in the beautiful alternative to sin: wisdom!
After the disastrous story in chapter 7, where a young man gave into an adulteress’ seductions, we see Solomon’s reasons for wanting us to seek wisdom. This is why when we go straight on in chapter 8 we read about wisdom, the woman. She’s back and is calling for followers.
“1 Does not wisdom cry out, and understanding lift up her voice? 2 She takes her stand on the top of the high hill, beside the way, where the paths meet. 3 She cries out by the gates, at the entry of the city, at the entrance of the doors: 4 “To you, o men, I call, and my voice is to the sons of men.”
If you think about it, the adulteress stands in opposition to wisdom. She lurks in the street corners and in the open squares, in her desire seeking men, and would sneer at those who would seek wisdom. She has no desire for upright men, other than to corrupt them. Wisdom stands as a light beacon on top of a prominent hill, by the gates of the city, and by the roads of the kingdom! She seeks men for good, not for evil. Such a difference! Her message is for all who can hear. It’s directed at all men, and it comes with a bit of sting.
“5 O you simple ones, understand prudence, and you fools, be of an understanding heart. 6 Listen, for I will speak of excellent things, and from the opening of my lips will come right things; 7 For my mouth will speak truth; wickedness is an abomination to my lips.”
The Bible sure uses strong language! People are here being called fools and simpletons by Solomon! In other parts of the Bible we are charged not to call our brother a fool, as we are hating him in our hearts. The Bible, however, is allowed to rebuke us because it is God speaking to us through it. Let’s listen.
Wisdom calls out in verse 5 for the simple and foolish to wise up and seek prudence. In light of the story in chapter 7 she is trying to keep them from destruction by the hands of evil people. She has excellent things to say. Her words are not dripping with enticement, rather they are good and true. She very much hates wickedness, as we see in verse 7. The adulterous woman would fit into that category.
Wisdom is altogether good and beautiful and desirable. The call then is to seek God and His wisdom. To do so is altogether good and beautiful and desirable. Amen.
Solomon’s knock-out: There is stark contrast of the two woman: wisdom and the adulteress. There are dangers when one tries to live without wisdom, especially that one is susceptible to this other woman and her wiles. Solomon delivers when it comes to the reasons for seeking wisdom. Solomon trumps the counter arguments as well.
Note: All scripture is taken from Biblestudytools.com and is the New King James Version. I am using a commentary by John Kitchen for help with difficult concepts and words.