Listen to Wisdom!
8:1This is the second part of Solomon's lesson. The woman who is called ‘Wisdom’ wants us to listen to her. We should not listen to the adulteress (chapter 7). If we follow her, we are on the road to death. Instead we should listen to Wisdom, so that we enjoy a good life.
1 Listen! Wisdom is calling out. She wants you to understand what is right, so she speaks in a loud voice. 2 She stands where people will hear her, on the hills along the road. She stands where different paths meet. 3 She stands near the gates where people go into the city. This is what she says:
4 ‘I call out to all of you, wherever you live on earth.
5 You who are silly, learn to be wise!
You who are fools, learn to understand what is right.
6 Listen! I have important things to tell you.
Everything that I will speak is right.
7 I say only things that are true.
I hate all wicked lies.
8 Everything that I say is right and true.
I say nothing that will deceive you.
9 If you understand what is right, you will understand all my words.
If you have knowledge, you will know that they are true.
10 Receive my wise teaching and knowledge as valuable things.
They are more valuable than silver or the best gold.
11 Wisdom is more valuable than jewels.
Nothing that you might ever want is equal to it.
12 I, wisdom, live with an honest mind as my friend.
I have knowledge and I understand what is right.
13 If you respect the Lord with fear, then you will hate anything that is evil.
I hate proud people who boast.
I hate people who live evil lives.
I hate people who say things to deceive others.
14 I tell people how to do wise things that are right.
I understand what is right and I am strong.
15 I help kings to rule well.
I help rulers to make fair laws.
16 I help leaders, officers and all judges to lead people in a good way.
17 I love those people who love me.
Whoever looks for me will find me.
18 I am able to give people riches and honour.
I help people to use their money well and to do what is right.
19 What you receive from me is better than the best gold.
It is better than the best silver.
20 I walk along the way that is righteous.
I follow the path of justice.
21 In that way, people who love me will receive riches.
I fill their houses with valuable things.
22 The Lord created me as the first thing that he did.
That was the first of his acts long ago.
23 He chose me as his servant from the beginning of time.
That was before the world began.
24 I was born before the deep seas were there.
There were not yet springs that poured out water.
25 I was born before the mountains or the hills appeared in their places.
26 I was born before the Lord made the earth and its fields,
before there was soil on the earth.
27 I was there when he put the heavens in their place.
I was there when he made the border of the sea where it meets the sky.
28 I was there when he put the clouds in the sky.
I was there when he made streams of water fill the seas.
29 He gave his command to the seas, that they should obey him.
The waters of the sea must stay inside its borders.
I was there when he built the foundations of the earth.
30 When the Lord made all that happen,
I was beside him as his faithful helper.
I pleased him every day, and I was happy to be with him.
31 The world that he had made gave me great joy.
The people who lived on it made me happy.
32 So listen to me, my children.
Anyone who obeys my teaching will be happy.
33 Listen when I tell you what is right for you to do.
Then you will be wise.
Do not forget what I tell you.
34 Anyone who listens to me is in a happy place.
You can wait outside my home each day, and I will teach you.
35 Anyone who finds me, wisdom, finds true life.
The Lord will bless that person.
36 But anyone who does not find me brings trouble on himself.
Everybody who hates me loves death.’