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BIBLE DIFFICULTIES

Benefits of Following Wisdom Daily

Proverbs 8:32-34 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
32 “And now, O sons, listen to me:
    happy are those who keep my ways.
33 Hear instruction and be wise,
    and do not neglect it.
34 Happy is the man who listens to me,
    watching daily at my gates,
    waiting beside my doors.

And now, O sons, listen to me: Wisdom, using a term of endearment, O sons, before giving his final commands, pleading for the sons to listen (Heb. shama), that is pay attention and obey, never departing from his words.

Happy are those who keep my ways: Happy, blessed: (Heb. asre; Gr. makarios) Asre occurs 11 times in the Hebrew Old Testament and makarios 50 times in the Greek New Testament. Happiness and being highly favored by God characterize this joy. It is speaking of a person who is content, full of joy. This is not to be confused with the Hebrew word barak which means, “to bless,” as in a divine blessing. The Hebrew barak and the Greek eulogeo is the act of being blessed, while the Hebrew asre and Greek makarios is the state or condition of the person who is being blessed, who is a highly favored one. Keep my ways is the same as “keep my words” as in 7:1. Solomon uses the imperative verb keep (Shomer), which is an exhortation or a command for the son to conform their actions to the wise words of Wisdom. In essence, “do what I say,” “obey my instructions,” or “follow in my ways.”

Young Christians AN ENCOURAGING THOUGHT_01

Hear instruction and be wise: Hear: The Hebrew verb (shama) for hear means more than simply taking in information through our ears; it also involves listening and paying attention, wherein we take notice of and act on (ready to obey) the teaching and thoughts of Wisdom; responding to the advice and guidance that the proverbs contain. The Hebrew noun rendered instruction (musar) means instructions, precepts, directions, procedures, regulations, i.e., a principle or rule concerning the personal conduct that is to be obeyed. The phrase hear instruction basically means to “obey my instructions” or “listen to my instructions.”

And do not neglect it: The Hebrew verb (para) translated neglect means to ignore, disregard Wisdom’s instruction, ways, that is, “pay no attention to” or “give no serious thought to” or “consideration to” the teachings of wisdom. – Prov. 1:25; 8:33; 13:18; 15:32.

Happy is the man who listens to me: For a better understanding of happy and listen see line 1 and line 2 of 8:32 above. While the Hebrew says happy is the man (Heb. adam), it is a reference to mankind, which includes both males and females.

Watching daily at my gates: The Hebrew verb rendered watching (shaqad) means to be very vigilant, be wakeful, be on the lookout for or be careful, keep watching. Daily in Hebrew is literally “day day,” meaning day to day, a sense of vigilance as well. Gates could be referring to a house, a room in the house, or the gates to a town. However, since the figurative language of 9:1, “Wisdom has built her house,” it is best that we take gates as a reference to the door to her house.

Waiting beside my doors: The Hebrew verb (Shomer) rendered waiting has the same sense as watching in line 1 of this verse. It means to guard, to keep watch over, with an added element of eager expectation. Those watching, and waiting are eagerly expecting something from Wisdom. The Hebrew rendered doors is literally “doorposts of my doors” and is simply, again, referring to the door to Wisdom’s house.

Proverbs 8:22-31―In this passage God’s “works of old” (i.e., His work during the creation week) are cited as the author demonstrates wisdom’s place of privilege in the universe. God’s wisdom is personified as His possession from eternity past and is said to have been with Him before He created the heavens and the earth. Wisdom preceded the first day of creation when “there were no watery depths” and “no springs filled with water” (v. 24). It was with Him before the third day when the “mountains and hills were established” (v. 25). Wisdom was present with Him when He created the heavens and on the second day when He separated the sky from the sea (v. 27). It was also there on the third day when He set a boundary for the sea and established the firm foundation of the continents (v. 29). All of nature testifies to the wisdom of God, proving Him to be a “skilled craftsman” (v. 30). For those who look with the eyes of faith, nature is a cause for delight and rejoicing in the power and goodness of God. God set the boundary for the sea and established the firm foundation of the continents.[1]

Certainly, by now in our reading of chapter 8, we should listen to the voice of wisdom, with the eagerness of sons. Let us be wise and pay attention to her teachings. True happiness belongs to the ones who do not neglect wisdom but listen meditative, intently, and prayerfully to her voice.

THE CREATION DAYS OF GENESIS gift of prophecy

The children of the world find time for vain amusements, without neglecting what they deem to be needful. Does it not show contempt of Wisdom’s instructions, when people professing godliness, seek excuses for neglecting the means of grace? Christ is Wisdom, and he is Life to all believers; nor can we obtain God’s favor, unless we find Christ, and are found in him. Those who offend Christ deceive themselves. Sin is anything not in accord with that is contrary to, God’s personality, standards, ways, and will; anything damaging one’s relationship with God. It can be in word, deed, or failing to do what one ought to have done.

[1] Whorton, Mark (2008-10-01). Holman QuickSource Guide to Understanding Creation (Kindle Locations 698-706). B&H Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

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