Wisdom—the Good Woman
1 Listen, Wisdom is calling.
Yes, Understanding is shouting for us.
2 Wisdom stands at the top of the hill,
by the road where the paths meet.
3 She is near the entrance to the city,
calling from the open gates.
4 “I am calling out to all of you.
I am speaking to everyone.
5 You who are ignorant, learn to be wise.
You who are foolish, get some common sense.
6 Listen, I have something important to say,
and I am telling you what is right.
7 My words are true,
and I will not say anything that is wrong.
8 Everything I say is right;
there is nothing false or crooked about it.
9 These things are clear to any intelligent person.
They are right to anyone with knowledge.
10 Choose discipline over silver
and knowledge over the finest gold.
11 Wisdom is better than pearls,
and nothing you desire compares with her.
The Value of Wisdom
12 “I am Wisdom.
I live with Good Judgment.
I am at home with Knowledge and Planning.
13 To respect the LORD means to hate evil.
I hate pride and boasting,
evil lives and hurtful words.
14 I have good advice and common sense to offer.
I have understanding and power.
15 With my help kings rule,
and governors make good laws.
16 With my help leaders govern,
and important officials make good decisions.* and important … decisions The Greek Version and some Hebrew copies have “as well as important officials, all the judges on earth.”
17 I love those who love me,
and those who look for me will find me.
18 With me there are riches and honor.
I have lasting wealth to give to you.
19 What I give is better than fine gold.
What I produce is better than pure silver.
20 I lead people the right way—
along the paths of justice.
21 I give riches to those who love me,
and I fill their houses with treasures.
22 “The LORD made me in the beginning,
long before he did anything else.
23 I was formed a long time ago,
before the world was made.
24 I was born before there was an ocean,
before the springs began to flow.
25 I was born before the mountains and hills
were set into place,
26 before the earth and fields were made,
before the dust of this world was formed.
27 I was there when he set up the skies,
when he drew a circle in the ocean to make a place for the land.
28 I was there when he put the clouds in the sky
and made the deep springs flow.
29 I was there when he set the limits on the sea
to make it stop where he said.
I was there when he laid the foundations of the earth.
30 I grew up as a child by his side,† I grew … his side Or “I was beside him like a skilled worker.”
laughing and playing all the time.
31 I played in the world he made
and enjoyed the people he put there.
32 “Now, children, listen to me.
If you follow my ways,
you will be happy too.
33 Listen to my teaching and be wise;
don’t ignore what I say.
34 Whoever waits at my door
and listens for me will be blessed.
35 Those who find me find life,
and the LORD will reward them.
36 But those who do not find me put their lives in danger.
Whoever hates me loves death.”
*8:16 and important … decisions The Greek Version and some Hebrew copies have “as well as important officials, all the judges on earth.”
†8:30 I grew … his side Or “I was beside him like a skilled worker.”