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Proverbs 8

Sunday Morning Bible Study

October 1, 2017


Do people see Jesus? Is the gospel preached? Does it address the person who is: Empty, lonely, guilty, or afraid to die?  Does it speak to the broken hearted? Does it build up the church? Milk – Meat – Manna Preach for a decision Is the church loved? Regular:  2900 words    Communion: 2500 words  Video=75wpm

The book of Proverbs is all about wisdom.

Wisdom is not about knowing facts.

Wisdom is about knowing what to do with what you know.
Wisdom is knowing when to do it.
Wisdom is knowing how to do it.

Solomon has tried to help us understand this concept of wisdom by “giving it a face” so to speak.

He has described wisdom as if it were a person, a woman.

Wisdom isn’t actually a person, but it is an attribute of God.

The first nine chapters of Proverbs are small “mini-lectures” that Solomon gives to his son.

Video:  The Bible Project – Proverbs Introduction

Proverbs 8 – Lady Wisdom

:1 Does not wisdom cry out, And understanding lift up her voice?

:1 Does not wisdom cry out

The last chapter was all about the “immoral woman” grabbing the young fool off the street and leading him astray.

Solomon reminds us that there is another “woman” out there in the streets – wisdom.

In the last chapter, there was the “immoral woman”.

The stupid naïve young man was attracted to her and made sure he went down her street.
She returned the favor by grabbing the young man and giving him lots of reasons for him to join her in her immorality.

The immoral woman was not just a lesson in sexual temptation, it was a lesson in how “folly” or “stupidity” attracts those who aren’t paying attention to their life.

We’ll see this contrast even clearer next week (Prov. 9).

While the immoral woman had her appeal, wisdom also has her appeal.

:2 She takes her stand on the top of the high hill, Beside the way, where the paths meet.

:2 on the top of the high hill

While the foolishness of immorality is sneaking around the streets, Lady Wisdom is not hiding, but out where everyone has a chance to see her.

:2 where the paths meet

Paths meet at the crossroads, the places where you need to make a choice in life.

Wisdom will be at any crossroads – will you take the wise path or choose the foolish path?



All throughout your life you will be faced with choices.
Some choices are not that important – like choice you made in what to wear to church today.
Some choices are a little more important.

The career you will choose.

The person you’re going to marry.

How you will raise your kids.

It’s important to remember that at all these crossroads in life, Wisdom is there calling out to you to make the wise choice.
In the movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Indiana and his father are on the trail for the supposed lost “Holy Grail”, a magical cup that gives eternal life.  At the end of the movie they meet a 700 year old knight who guards a collection of cups, and only one of the real grail.  The knight warns that if you drink from the wrong cup you will die, but if you drink from the right cup you will live.  A few weeks ago we saw the bad guy in the movie drink from the wrong cup and died.  Now it’s Indiana’s turn.

Video:  Indiana Jones - the Last Crusade – Indiana Chooses Wisely

The most important choice you will ever make in life is the God you will serve.
Jesus Himself said,

(John 3:16–18 NKJV) —16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Eternal life doesn’t come by drinking from some magic cup, it comes from choosing to believe in Jesus, the Son of God.

Jesus paid for our sins by dying on a cross, and He offers forgiveness and true eternal life to everyone who will come to Him and put their trust in Him.

:3 She cries out by the gates, at the entry of the city, At the entrance of the doors:

:3 by the gates, at the entry of the city

The gates of the city were where the leaders would hang out.

It’s where the courts were held and judgment was handed out.
It’s where important decisions were made, decisions that will hopefully be made through wisdom.

:4 “To you, O men, I call, And my voice is to the sons of men.

:5 O you simple ones, understand prudence, And you fools, be of an understanding heart.

:5 O you simple ones, understand prudence

simplepethiy – naïve, foolish, a person lacking common sense


You can learn

I wonder if sometimes my greatest problem is that I don’t realize how much common sense I lack. 
I know I’ve started a lot of projects around the house only to find that I don’t know as much as I thought I did.
A man decides one day that he is sick and tired of people calling him stupid, so he decides to show his wife that he is really smart. While his wife is off at work, he decides that he is going to paint a couple of rooms in the house. The next day, right after his wife leaves for work, he gets down to the task at hand. His wife arrives home at 5:30 and smells the distinctive smell of paint. She walks into the living room and finds her husband lying on the floor in a pool of sweat. She notices that he is wearing a fur coat and a ski jacket at the same time. She rushes over and says, “Honey, are you all right?” He slowly nods his head yes. “What are you doing?” she asks incredulously. “I wanted to prove that I’m not so dumb,” he started, “and I wanted to do it by painting the house.” “Well why do you have both a ski jacket and a fur coat on?” she asks dumbfounded. “Well,” he says, “I was reading the directions on the paint can and it said: For best results, put on two coats.”
Just because you are a “simple one” doesn’t mean you have to stay a “simple one”.
You can learn wisdom.
One of the ways we grow in godly wisdom is through your study of God’s Word.
(Psalm 19:7 NKJV) The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple
(Psalm 119:130 NKJV) The entrance of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple.

God’s Word may not give insight into painting your living room, but it will help you in the bigger things of life like your career, or your marriage.

:6 Listen, for I will speak of excellent things, And from the opening of my lips will come right things;

excellent thingsnagiyd – leader, ruler, captain, prince

right thingsmeyshar – evenness, uprightness, straightness, equity

This is wisdom personified speaking.

:7 For my mouth will speak truth; Wickedness is an abomination to my lips.

truth‘emeth – firmness, faithfulness, truth; sureness, reliability

:8 All the words of my mouth are with righteousness; Nothing crooked or perverse is in them.

:8 All the words of my mouth are with righteousness

Verses 7 & 8 are saying the same thing.


Wisdom is righteous

Wisdom doesn’t help you make evil choices.  It helps you make choices that are good and wholesome.
(James 3:17 NLT) But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere.
If you are asking God for help in a decision and you end up making a choice that’s “wicked” or “perverse”, you have not been listening to God’s wisdom.
I remember years ago that a dear married male friend was trying to help a young woman in regards to her marriage.  Apparently this woman was flirting with my friend and expressing that she wanted to be unfaithful to her husband.  My friend said he’d meet her at a motel.  He told me his intention was to turn the situation around and show her how bad an affair would be.  He said he was going to use “Satan’s tactics” against this woman to show her the truth.

That is not God’s wisdom.

If you are trying to straighten out your financial problem, the answer is not going to be in doing something illegal like not paying your taxes.

:9 They are all plain to him who understands, And right to those who find knowledge.

:9 plain to him who understands

Wise answers are obvious to the person who is looking for wisdom.

:10 Receive my instruction, and not silver, And knowledge rather than choice gold;

:11 For wisdom is better than rubies, And all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her.

:11 wisdom is better than rubies

The original “Let’s Make A Deal” host, Monty Hall, died yesterday at the age of 96.  So, in tribute to Old Monty, Let’s Make a Deal…

Video:  Let’s Make a Deal – What has 2I’s and is hiding behind 2?


Wisdom or Wealth?

There are two choices before you.
Door #1 is marked “Cash”.
Door #2 is marked “Wisdom”.
Just like the gameshow, you don’t know what’s actually behind each door.
Aside from the fact that you’re wearing a weird costume in front of millions of people, how hard is this decision for you?

You don’t know how much money is behind door #1.

You don’t know what piece of wisdom is behind door #2. And I won’t promise you it’s “Fiji” (video).

The choices you make in life are a lot bigger than a game show.
The choice you make sets a trajectory in your life.
Is money your trajectory, or God’s wisdom?
And to make things more complicated, in case you want to choose “both”, you can’t.  Jesus said,

(Matthew 6:24 NLT) “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.

:12 “I, wisdom, dwell with prudence, And find out knowledge and discretion.

wisdomchokmah – wisdom

prudence‘ormah – shrewdness, craftiness, prudence

It’s the sense of discretion in practical affairs

knowledgeda’ath – knowledge

It’s the sense of the result of perception and learning and reasoning.

discretionmezimmah – purpose, discretion, device, plot

It’s the sense of judging wisely and objectively

:13 The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way And the perverse mouth I hate.

arrogancega’own – exaltation, majesty, pride

The sense here is of unreasonable and inordinate self-esteem

perversetahpukah – perversity, perverse thing

The sense here is the characteristic of deliberately deviating from what is good.

:13 The fear of the Lord is to hate evil

hatesane’ – to hate, be hateful

Earlier, Solomon told his son,

(Proverbs 1:7 NKJV) The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Having a healthy respect for God is the first step in growing in wisdom.

Now Solomon elaborates that having a healthy respect for God will result in “hating evil”.

Specifically, Solomon is talking about having a hatred for:

The attitudes of pride and arrogance.
The choice of walking an evil path.
Words that are false and misleading.
If you have a healthy respect for God, you won’t do these things.

:13 the perverse mouth I hate

These are things that God hates too, but don’t forget that it’s “Wisdom” that’s speaking here.

It’s not “wise” to have attitudes like pride, arrogance, and a perverse mouth.
It’s not just God that you’re offending, but you’re actually shooting yourself in the foot.

:14 Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom; I am understanding, I have strength.

Counsel‘etsah – counsel, advice, purpose

The sense here is of something that provides direction or advice as to a decision or course of action.

sound wisdomtuwshiyah – wisdom, sound knowledge, success, sound or efficient wisdom, abiding success; sound or efficient wisdom

The sense here is of a particular kind of wisdom that has an emphasis on soundness or efficiency.

strengthgebuwrah – strength, might; being physically or mentally strong

understandingbiynah – understanding, discernment; the condition of someone who understands

:15 By me kings reign, And rulers decree justice.

:16 By me princes rule, and nobles, All the judges of the earth.

:15 By me kings reign

I don’t think Solomon means that all rulers have “wisdom”.

I think he means that when they do their job well, they are taking advantage of this attribute of God, wisdom.

:17 I love those who love me, And those who seek me diligently will find me.

love‘ahab – to love

:17 I love those who love me

If you make a point of cherishing this thing called wisdom, you will find that you will do well by it.

:18 Riches and honor are with me, Enduring riches and righteousness.

Riches‘osher – wealth, riches

honorkabowd – glory, honor, glorious, abundance; the state of being highly respected or revered

Enduring‘atheq – handed forward, advanced, enduring; long lasting or unceasing

richeshown – wealth, riches, substance

righteousnesstsedaqah – justice, righteousness

:19 My fruit is better than gold, yes, than fine gold, And my revenue than choice silver.

revenuetebuw’ah – produce, product, revenue

choicebachar – to choose, elect, decide for

:20 I traverse the way of righteousness, In the midst of the paths of justice,

:21 That I may cause those who love me to inherit wealth, That I may fill their treasuries.

:19 My fruit is better than gold

While it’s a mistake to make it your life’s goal to be wealthy (Prov. 9:11), you will find that if you choose the path of wisdom, you will find your financial needs met.

Jesus put it another way,

(Matthew 6:33 NKJV) But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

So, are you interested in riches and honor? Do I have your attention?

Make godly wisdom your true priority and God will take care of the rest.

:22 “The Lord possessed me at the beginning of His way, Before His works of old.

:22 The Lord possessed me at the beginning of His way

God has always had wisdom.

God did not have to “learn” wisdom like we do.

He has never lacked wisdom.

Everything God does is guided by this moral law of “wisdom”

:23 I have been established from everlasting, From the beginning, before there was ever an earth.

:23 before there was ever an earth

Before God ever set a single aspect of His creation into motion, He was “wise”.

Everything God has made has been done with “wisdom”.

: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, I was brought forth;

:25 Before the mountains were settled

settledtaba’ – to sink, settle down, be planted

This is an interesting way to talk about the formation of mountains.

Some think the formation of our modern mountains may have taken place during the flood of Noah.

Last Summer we showed the movie “Is Genesis History?

In that movie Dr. Del Tackett interviewed multiple PhDs in various fields to address the possibility that the account of creation and the flood of Noah were in fact historical events.
He interviewed Steve Austin PhD, a geologist who has spent the last forty years studying the geology of the Grand Canyon.  Back in the 1980s, Dr. Austin was studying the area in Washington state devastated by the catastrophic eruption of Mount St. Helens.  He noticed how similar the area looked to the geology of the Grand Canyon.
In the clip, Dr. Tackett is asking Dr. Austin how the layers at the Grand Canyon came into being.
Video:  Is Genesis History – Steve Austin – Layers at Grand Canyon.
The eruption at Mt. St. Helens in 1980 produced a canyon similar to the Grand Canyon, except on a smaller scale.  It only took a few days to do so.
I know that this simple video clip isn’t going to change the minds of you more scientifically minded who have grown accustomed to thinking that the Grand Canyon took millions of years to form – but I hope I make you uncomfortable enough to consider buying and watching the entire movie several times to examine how this group of scientists have assembled the actual data.

:26 While as yet He had not made the earth or the fields, Or the primal dust of the world.

:27 When He prepared the heavens, I was there, When He drew a circle on the face of the deep,

:27 I was there

This is Solomon’s personified “wisdom” (chockmah) speaking. She was involved at creation.

Though we might be tempted to say that this is Jesus speaking, this is not.

Wisdom is not an actual person, but an attribute of God, and God has always been “wise”, long before He created the universe.

:27 When He drew a circle on the face of the deep

(Proverbs 8:27 NLT) I was there when he established the heavens, when he drew the horizon on the oceans.

:28 When He established the clouds above, When He strengthened the fountains of the deep,

:29 When He assigned to the sea its limit, So that the waters would not transgress His command, When He marked out the foundations of the earth,

:30 Then I was beside Him as a master craftsman; And I was daily His delight, Rejoicing always before Him,

master craftsman‘amown – artificer, architect, master workman, skilled workman

:31 Rejoicing in His inhabited world, And my delight was with the sons of men.

:28 He established the clouds above


Intelligent Design

This entire passage is speaking about how God used wisdom in His creation of this world.
We call this “Intelligent Design”.

Some scientists are beginning to pay attention to the complexity of this world around us, and see it as evidence that it is all far too complex to have happened randomly.

In the bonus material on the “Is Genesis History” DVD, Dr. Tackett interviews Stuart Burgess, PhD, a professor of Engineering Design at the University of Bristol (UK).
Video – Is Genesis History – Dr. Stuart Burgess – Intelligent Design in light and air.
What’s important to know is that the Creator has not remained in the shadows for us to guess who He is or what He’s like.
The eternal God has entered into our time/space continuum to reveal Himself in two ways:
(Hebrews 1:1–2 NLT) —1 Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets.

God revealed Himself through the prophets, through His Word.

The Bible is a supernatural book.  It has accurately predicted the future through hundreds of specific prophecies.

2 And now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he created the universe.

God revealed Himself in the clearest way when the Son of God took on human flesh and lived on this earth.

:32 “Now therefore, listen to me, my children, For blessed are those who keep my ways.

:33 Hear instruction and be wise, And do not disdain it.

:34 Blessed is the man who listens to me, Watching daily at my gates, Waiting at the posts of my doors.

:35 For whoever finds me finds life, And obtains favor from the Lord;

:36 But he who sins against me wrongs his own soul; All those who hate me love death.”

:35 whoever finds me finds life

This is “Wisdom” speaking.


The Smart Choice

The world has worked hard to conceal the evidence that the universe is a creation of an intelligent Mind.
I grew up as a nerd.  In high school, I was one of those guys who took all the AP classes, including the highest math and science classes.
I took the classes taught by the smartest atheist teachers Troy High School had to offer.
I know how intimidating it is to be told that only stupid people believe in a Creator.
When we reject the notion of a Creator, we lose touch with true wisdom.
(Romans 1:20–22 NLT) —20 For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.

If we really want to be honest with ourselves and with the evidence of Intelligent Design all around us, we’d realize that there is indeed a God.

21 Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused.

When man comes up with ways to tell himself that there is no God, he begins to come up with some pretty foolish alternatives.

22 Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools.

Our passage in Proverbs has been talking about “wisdom” in Creation.  When man rejects the clear evidence about God, he isn’t “wise”, but a “fool”.

At the beginning of our study we talked about the choices we make and the importance of making the wise choice.

Will you choose Jesus today?