Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Al Campbell:
The Blessings of Wisdom
8 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. 6 Hear, for I will speak noble things, and from my lips will come what is right, 7 for 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. 10 Take 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. 14 I 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.
I preached about this passage on the May 22nd. Now we get to read it in context. Chapter 7 taught about having a “love relationship” with Wisdom, and warned of the dangers of having an affair with foolishness and temptation. Chapter 8 offers the positive alternative and emphasizes the blessings of Wisdom. The high point is verse 8:11, that Wisdom is better than all we desire. This is true because our desires are often foolish; we frequently desire things that will make our lives worse if we get them! Wisdom leads us past our foolish desires and draws us toward those things that truly fulfill us and lead us to genuine abundant life.