Wisdom’s call1 Does not wisdom call out?
Does not understanding raise her voice?
2 At the highest point along the way,
where the paths meet, she takes her stand;
3 beside the gate leading into the city,
at the entrance, she cries aloud:
4 ‘To you, O people, I call out;
I raise my voice to all humanity.
5 You who are simple, gain prudence;
you who are foolish, set your hearts on it. ▼
▼ Septuagint; Hebrew foolish, instruct your minds
6 Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say;
I open my lips to speak what is right.
7 My mouth speaks what is true,
for my lips detest wickedness.
8 All the words of my mouth are just;
none of them is crooked or perverse.
9 To the discerning all of them are right;
they are upright to those who have found knowledge.
10 Choose my instruction instead of silver,
knowledge rather than choice gold,
11 for wisdom is more precious than rubies,
and nothing you desire can compare with her.
12 ‘I, wisdom, dwell together with prudence;
I possess knowledge and discretion.
13 To fear the Lord is to hate evil;
I hate pride and arrogance,
evil behaviour and perverse speech.
14 Counsel and sound judgment are mine;
I have insight, I have power.
15 By me kings reign
and rulers issue decrees that are just;
16 by me princes govern,
and nobles – all who rule on earth. ▼
▼ Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint; other Hebrew manuscripts all righteous rulers
17 I love those who love me,
and those who seek me find me.
18 With me are riches and honour,
enduring wealth and prosperity.
19 My fruit is better than fine gold;
what I yield surpasses choice silver.
20 I walk in the way of righteousness,
along the paths of justice,
21 bestowing a rich inheritance on those who love me
and making their treasuries full.
22 ‘The Lord brought me forth as the first of his works, ▼
▼ Or way; or dominion, , ▼
▼ Or The Lord possessed me at the beginning of his work; or The Lord brought me forth at the beginning of his work
before his deeds of old;
23 I was formed long ages ago,
at the very beginning, when the world came to be.
24 When there were no watery depths, I was given birth,
when there were no springs overflowing with water;
25 before the mountains were settled in place,
before the hills, I was given birth,
26 before he made the world or its fields
or any of the dust of the earth.
27 I was there when he set the heavens in place,
when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep,
28 when he established the clouds above
and fixed securely the fountains of the deep,
29 when he gave the sea its boundary
so that the waters would not overstep his command,
and when he marked out the foundations of the earth.
30 Then I was constantly ▼
▼ Or was the master worker; or was a little childat his side.
I was filled with delight day after day,
rejoicing always in his presence,
31 rejoicing in his whole world
and delighting in the human race.
32 ‘Now then, my children, listen to me;
blessed are those who keep my ways.
33 Listen to my instruction and be wise;
do not disregard it.
34 Blessed are those who listen to me,
watching daily at my doors,
waiting at my doorway.
35 For those who find me find life
and receive favour from the Lord.
36 But those who fail to find me harm themselves;
all who hate me love death.’
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