1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel;
proverb:  mashal. (mah-shall) A comparison, parable, or maxim.
Preamble to the Book.  Twelve Words of Wisdom.

2 To know wisdom
1) wisdom: hokmah.(hoke-mah) Hokhmah is the first and most general term used in the Bible to define wisdom, and includes moral intelligence, skill for living right, wise behavior, orderliness in life, control, restraint, obedience, prudent planning, prioritizing of one's goals according to God's will, time management, and diplomacy. When Wisdom is personified as a lady in chapters 1, 8, and 9, Hokhma is her name. Hokhmah is not speculative or philisophical thought admired by the Greeks and some orientals, but rather a pragmatic code for day-to-day decision making and life conduct, calculated for success, pleasing to both God and man.

2) instruction: musar'. (myu-sar) Musar is how one acquires Hokhmah. Wisdom cannot be obtained through experience and common sense alone. It must be taught be an instructor who disciplines. Musar means chastisement, reproof, warning, restraint, correction, discipline, doctrine, and rebuke. Musar is the painful aspect of learning. One possesses musar if he is able to recognize his own unruly passions, habits, and temptations, and submit himself to an authority figure who helps him gain control over them.

to perceive the words of understanding;
3) understanding: biynah'. (bee-nah) Biynah is the simple ability to know right from wrong. Its root meaning is "to distinguish, to separate." Biynah is what Solomon prayed for at Gibeon in 1 Kings 3:9 "... that I may discern between good and bad..."

3 To receive the instruction of wisdom,
4) instruction of wisdom: sakal'. (sok-all) Sakal means successful prudence. It is more than knowing what is right. Sakal is doing what is right. It is the natural next-step after biynah. It means to prosper by dealing prudently, to have good success, guide one's affairs wittingly.

5) justice: tzedek. (tsed-dek) Tzedek is righteousness. It is the moral or legal right by which one may act in confidence. It is incorporated in the name Melchizedek. Also Melchishalom.

and judgment,
6) judgement: mishpat'. (meesh-pot) Mishpat is a judicial verdict and its penalty. Mishpat is a clear discerning of the spirit and motive of other persons, and the level-headed determination of how to treat them. It is knowing whom to include in one's friendship, and whom to eliminate. Mishpat is having the forthrightness to give someone their due, and seeing the matter disposed rightly. Also, verdict you make.

and equity;
7) equity: mesharim. (mesh-ah-reem) Mesharim, a collective plural, suggests all the complexities of fairness. Meshar offers an attempt at evenness and concord. It is the peacemaker's gift, the art of compromise striving to satisfy both parties in a dispute where neither is more at fault than the other. It is a call for agreement. Peacemaking.

4 To give subtilty to the simple,
8) subtilty: 'ormah. (or-mah) Ormah is shrewdness. It can be good or bad. The serpent was subtle with Eve. It was in him the ability to mislead. In the good sense, it is the guard against being misled. Ormah in the marketplace refrains one from buying worthless or unnecessary things regardless of their attractive advertising pitch. Ormah in spirituality means not being duped by false teachers and erroneous doctrines. Ormah in society means not being pulled into the wrong relationships. Not being misled.

to the young man knowledge
9) knowledge: da'ath. (die-ath) Da'ath is awareness of the rules and the facts. It is the acquiring of all available sets of information before making decisions. Da'ath is education.  Its beginning is the fear of the Lord, its result is power.

and discretion.
10) discretion: mezimmah'. (mez-e-mah) Mezimmah' is prudent planning, the natural follower to da'ath. It is the sagacity to see ahead, and provide accordingly. Mezimmah' counts the cost and devises the best method before proceding. It works smarter, rather than harder. It is thought of as "witty invention." Ability to plan ahead.

5 A wise man will hear, and will increase learning;
11) learning: lekah. (lek-ah) Lekah is the love of learning.  It is the ability to teach with such grace that the hearers love learning. Lekah is the humility to realize that true education never ends. One who has lekah is never a "know-it-all," but is ever a "learn-it-all."

and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:
12) wise counsels: tachbulah'. (tok-boo-lah) Tachbulah' literally means "knowing the ropes." It is a nautical term, describing a sailor's marvelous skill at maneuvering his craft in either favourable or contary winds. Tachbulah' is steermanship, good guidance, and sound advise. It is skill at navigating through complex matters. It draws on the experience of those who have been through it all before,and have mapped the course.

6 To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.
7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
With these 12 elements of wisdom at his disposal, a person can procede through this book, and gain much insight.

The Fatherly Discourses.

Pay Attention!

8 My son, hear the instruction of thy father, importance is the reward of one who listens, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
A position of learns, heeds, and acts upon the following lessons. 
9 For they shall be  an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck.
You'll get a crown and a chain but high privilege and deep responsibility.

Don't Make Friends With Unprincipled Persons!

10 My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.
The first thing a wise father warns his children about is unwholesome friendships.
11 If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause:
The father has in mind the gang down the street,  thugs and thieves who press the neighborhood's young people to join them.
12 Let us swallow them up alive as the grave; and whole, as those that go down into the pit:
13 We shall find all precious substance, we shall fill our houses with spoil:
14 Cast in thy lot among us; let us all have one purse:
15 My son, walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path:
16 For their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood.
17 Surely in vain the net is spread in the sight of any bird.
18 And they lay wait for their own blood; they lurk privily for their own lives.
19 So are the ways of every one that is greedy of gain; which taketh away the life of the owners thereof.

If "Wisdom" Were a Lady, Here's What She Would Say To the People We've Been Discussing

20 Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets:
"Wisdom" makes her appeal to three types of persons, all of whom are probably members of the gang down the street.
21 She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying,
22 How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?
They're either simpletons (empty heads, open to any idea and willing to follow the loudest voice); scorners (loud-mouths who feel they elevate themselves by ridiculing others); and fools (hard-hearts who have already set themselves to refuse correction or instruction).
23 Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.
Like God, "Wisdom" calls for repentance, promising an outpouring of Spirit and Word.  See James 1:5 and Genesis 4:7.
24 Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded;
The fools refused the call.
25 But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof:

The scorner mocked the call.

Wisdom says:
26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;
27 When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.
Rejectors and scoffers will both be scoffed at and refused. There is little hope for fools and scorners.  Interestingly, though, there is still hope for simpletons!  Read on...
28 Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:
29 For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD:
30 They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.
31 Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.
32 For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.
33 But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.

- source:
Hayes, Pat. Solomon and the Proverbs: A Commentary By Pay Hayes. United Christian Publications: 2001.


The Word of Wisdom is a gift of the Holy Spirit:
For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit. 1 Corinthians 12:8

How to obtain Godly wisdom:
But if any man among you is without wisdom, let him make his request to God, who gives freely to all without an unkind word, and it will be given to him. James 1:5

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever. Psalm 111:10

Evidence of Godly wisdom:
Who has wisdom and good sense among you? let him make his works clear by a life of gentle wisdom. But if you have bitter envy in your heart and the desire to get the better of others, have no pride in this, talking falsely against what is true. This wisdom is not from heaven, but is of the earth and the flesh and the Evil One. For where envy is, and the desire to get the better of others, there is no order, but every sort of evil-doing. But the wisdom which is from heaven is first holy, then gentle, readily giving way in argument, full of peace and mercy and good works, not doubting, not seeming other than it is.
James 3:13-17

And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit, and of power.
1 Corinthians 2:4

Difference between man's wisdom and God's wisdom:
Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. 1 Corinthians 3:18-20

And I saw that there is an advantage to wisdom above foolish ways, like the advantage of the light above the darkness. Ecclesiastes 2:13

Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroyeth much good. Ecclesiastes 9:18

                                       Jeremy Brown 2001

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