In Praise of Wisdom
In 2 translations
CHAPTER 8 – King James Version
1 Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice?
2 She standeth in the top of high places, by the way in the places of the paths.
3 She crieth at the gates, at the entry of the city, at the coming in at the doors.
4 Unto you, O men, I call; and my voice is to the sons of man.
5 O ye simple, understand wisdom: and, ye fools, be ye of an understanding heart.
6 Hear; for I will speak of excellent things; and the opening of my lips shall be right things.
7 For my mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
8 All the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing froward or perverse in them.
9 They are all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge.
10 Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold.
11 For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it.
12 I wisdom dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge of witty inventions.
13 The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.
14 Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom: I am understanding; I have strength.
15 By me kings reign, and princes decree justice.
16 By me princes rule, and nobles, even all the judges of the earth.
17 I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.
18 Riches and honour are with me; yea, durable riches and righteousness.
19 My fruit is better than gold, yea, than fine gold; and my revenue than choice silver.
20 I lead in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of judgment:
21 That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures.
22 The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old.
23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.
24 When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water.
25 Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth:
26 While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.
27 When he prepared the heavens, I was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth:
28 When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep:
29 When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:
30 Then I was by him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him;
31 Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights were with the sons of men.
32 Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways.
33 Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not.
34 Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors.
35 For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the LORD.
36 But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.
CHAPTER 9 – King James Version
1 Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars:
2 She hath killed her beasts; she hath mingled her wine; she hath also furnished her table.
3 She hath sent forth her maidens: she crieth upon the highest places of the city,
4 Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,
5 Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled.
6 Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.
7 He that reproveth a scorner getteth to himself shame: and he that rebuketh a wicked man getteth himself a blot.
8 Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee.
9 Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.
10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.
11 For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased.
12 If thou be wise, thou shalt be wise for thyself: but if thou scornest, thou alone shalt bear it.
13 A foolish woman is clamorous: she is simple, and knoweth nothing.
14 For she sitteth at the door of her house, on a seat in the high places of the city,
15 To call passengers who go right on their ways:
16 Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: and as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,
17 Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.
18 But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell.
Proverbs 8 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
1 Wisdom is calling!
Understanding is raising her voice!
2 On the heights along the road,
where the paths meet, she is standing;
3 by the gates leading into the city,
at the entrances, she cries aloud:
4 “People, I am calling you,
raising my voice to all mankind.
5 You who don’t direct your lives,
as for you, you fools,
get some common sense!
6 “Listen! I will say worthwhile things;
when I speak, my words are right.
7 My mouth says what is true,
because my lips detest evil.
8 All the words from my mouth are righteous;
nothing false or crooked is in them.
9 They are all clear to those who understand
and straightforward to those who gain knowledge.
10 Receive my instruction, rather than silver;
knowledge, rather than the finest gold.
11 For wisdom is better than pearls;
nothing you want can compare with her.
12 “I, wisdom, live together with caution;
I attain knowledge and discretion.
13 The fear of Adonai is hatred of evil.
I hate pride and arrogance,
evil ways and duplicitous speech.
14 Good advice is mine, and common sense;
I am insight, power is mine.
15 By me kings reign,
and princes make just laws.
16 By me princes govern,
nobles too, and all the earth’s rulers.
17 I love those who love me;
and those who seek me will find me.
18 Riches and honor are with me,
lasting wealth and righteousness.
19 My fruit is better than gold, fine gold,
my produce better than the finest silver.
20 I follow the course of righteousness
along the paths of justice,
21 to endow with wealth those who love me
and fill their treasuries.
22 “Adonai made me as the beginning of his way,
the first of his ancient works.
23 I was appointed before the world,
before the start, before the earth’s beginnings.
24 When I was brought forth, there were no ocean depths,
no springs brimming with water.
25 I was brought forth before the hills,
before the mountains had settled in place;
26 he had not yet made the earth, the fields,
or even the earth’s first grains of dust.
27 When he established the heavens, I was there.
When he drew the horizon’s circle on the deep,
28 when he set the skies above in place,
when the fountains of the deep poured forth,
29 when he prescribed boundaries for the sea,
so that its water would not transgress his command,
when he marked out the foundations of the earth,
30 I was with him as someone he could trust.
For me, every day was pure delight,
as I played in his presence all the time,.
31 playing everywhere on his earth,
and delighting to be with humankind.
32 “Therefore, children, listen to me:
happy are those who keep my ways.
33 Hear instruction, and grow wise;
do not refuse it.
34 How happy the person who listens to me,
who watches daily at my gates
and waits outside my doors.
35 For he who finds me finds life
and obtains the favor of Adonai.
36 But he who misses me harms himself;
all who hate me love death.”
Proverbs 9 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
1 Wisdom has built herself a house;
she has carved her seven pillars.
2 She has prepared her food, spiced her wine,
and she has set her table.
3 She has sent out her young girls [with invitations];
she calls from the heights of the city,
4 “Whoever is unsure of himself, turn in here!”
To someone weak-willed she says,
5 “Come and eat my food!
Drink the wine I have mixed!
6 Don’t stay unsure of yourself, but live!
Walk in the way of understanding!”
7 “He who corrects a scoffer only gets insulted;
reproving a wicked man becomes his blemish.
8 If you reprove a scoffer, he will hate you;
if you reprove a wise man, he will love you.
9 Give to a wise man, and he grows still wiser;
teach a righteous man, and he will learn still more.
10 The fear of Adonai is the beginning of wisdom,
and knowledge of holy ones is understanding.
11 For with me, your days will be increased;
years will be added to your life.
12 If you are wise, your wisdom helps you;
but if you scoff, you bear the consequences alone.”
13 The foolish woman is coarse;
she doesn’t think, and she doesn’t know a thing.
14 She sits at the door of her house
or on a seat at the heights of the city,
15 calling to those who pass by,
to those going straight along their ways,
16 “Whoever is unsure of himself, turn in here!”
To someone weak-willed she says,
17 “Stolen water is sweet;
food eaten in secret is pleasant.”
18 But he doesn’t realize
that the dead are there,
and that those who accept her invitation
are in the depths of Sh’ol.
Adonai – literally, “my Lord,” a word the Hebrew Bible uses to refer to God. When in large and small capital letters in the Complete Jewish Bible (A-DO-NAI), it represents the tetragrammation, the Hebrew name of God consisting of four letters, Yud-Heh-Vav-Heh (YHVH), sometimes rendered in English as Jehovah or Yahweh, but usually as Lord, sometimes as God. See Matthew 1:20 – 25.
Sh’ol – Sheol, Hades, hell – the place of the dead, according to the Tanakh. See Matthew 11:23.