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Nothing Can Compare to the Wisdom of God

Proverbs 3:16 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
16 Length of days[9] is in her right hand;
in her left hand are riches and honor.

[9] I.e., Long life

Today many engage in unrestrained living, sexual immorality, drug or alcohol abuse, and so forth. From what we see every day in the news and right within our communities, are people who practice those things really happy? Or rather do they bring upon themselves as well as others much sorrow and pain, even early death?

Length of days is in her right hand: The Hebrew words for “length of days” (ʾō·rěḵ yôm) means “a long time” and in this context “a long life” or “many years of life.” The sense of this phrase is that she, wisdom, is bearing gifts in here right and left hand for all who seek her. In her right hand, the position of preference, is a long life of many years, while her left hand holds riches and honor. However, the overall message is clear once more, wisdom is of a far greater value than these, as verse 15 stated, “nothing you desire can compare with her.”

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in her left hand are riches and honor: There is no contrast between the right hand and the left hand here as to the size and significance of the gift. There are great gifts in both hands. The point is that here hands are full of great gifts. Riches (Heb. ashar) refers to an abundance of material possessions and resources. It is having possessions, finances, and resources above and beyond the norm, with an emphasis on wealth. Honor (Heb. kabod) is respect and recognition of one’s name, position, or status in life.

The right hand in Bible times is figuratively used as the hand of protection, the hand that saved you in dangerous times. (Ps 16:8; 109:31) In her left hand “are riches and honor.” The wise person has the ability to use the knowledge that lies within Scripture effectively, which will bring them a peaceful and pleasant life that is blessed by God.

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