Wisdom, Your True Love
1Stick close to my instruction, my son,
and follow all my advice.
2If you do what I say you will live well.
Guard your life with my revelation-truth,
for my teaching is as precious as your eyesight. # 7:2 Or “like you would the pupil of your eye.” Literally “the little man of the eye,” which is a figure of speech for your most prized possession.
3Treasure my instructions, and cherish them within your heart. # 7:3 Or “Write them upon the tablets of your heart.”
4Say to wisdom, “I love you,”
and to understanding, “You’re my sweetheart.”
5“May the two of you protect me, and may we never be apart!”
For they will keep you from the adulteress,
with her smooth words meant to seduce your heart.
6Looking out the window of my house one day
7I noticed among the mindless crowd
a simple, naïve young man who was about to go astray.
8There he was, walking down the street.
Then he turned the corner,
going on his way hurrying to the house of the harlot—
the woman he had planned to meet.
9There he was in the twilight as darkness fell,
convinced no one was watching
as he entered the black shadows of hell. # 7:9 Implied from v. 27.
10That’s when their rendezvous began.
A woman of the night appeared,
dressed to kill the strength of any man.
She was decked out as a harlot, pursuing her amorous plan.
11Her voice was seductive, rebellious, and boisterous
as she wandered far from what’s right.
12Her type can be found soliciting on street corners
on just about any night.
13She wrapped her arms around the senseless young man
and held him tight—
she enticed him with kisses that seemed so right.
Then, with insolence, she whispered in his ear,
14“Come with me. It’ll be all right.
I’ve got everything we need for a feast.
I’ll cook you a wonderful dinner. # 7:14 Or “offered peace offerings and paid my vows [in the temple].” This is a way of saying, “I have lots of meat left over from the sacrifices I’ve offered, enough for a great meal.”
So here I am—I’m all yours!
15You’re the very one I’ve looked for,
the one I knew I wanted from the moment I saw you.
That’s why I’ve come out here tonight,
so I could meet a man just like you. # 7:15 Compared to Song. 3:1–4, this seems to be a parodic reversal of the Shulamite who goes out into the city to seek a man, and when she finds him, embraces him. This account of the harlot seems to be the converse of the theme of Song of Songs.
16I’ve spread my canopy bed with coverings,
lovely multicolored Egyptian linens
ready for you to lie down on.
17I’ve sprinkled the sheets with intoxicating perfume
made from myrrh, aloes, and sweet cinnamon. # 7:17 Although these spices are found in the sacred anointing oil, the adulteress (religious system) has only a false anointing with no true power.
18Come, let’s get comfortable and take pleasure in each other
and make love all night!
19There’s no one home, for my husband’s away on business.
20He left home loaded with money to spend,
so don’t worry.
He won’t be back until another month ends.” # 7:20 Or “He left with a bag of money and won’t be back until the new moon.”
21-22He was swayed by her sophistication,
enticed by her longing embrace.
She led him down the wayward path right into sin and disgrace.
Quickly he went astray, with no clue
where he was truly headed,
taken like a dumb ox alongside the butcher.
She was like a venomous snake coiled to strike,
so she set her fangs into him! # 7:21–22 The last sentence in this verse is arguably difficult to translate, with many variant options. The Aramaic is “taken like a dog to captivity.” The Hebrew can be translated “bounding like a stag to a trap.” Other ancient Jewish commentaries refer to this portion as “rushing like a venomous snake to discipline the foolish one,” meaning that with the swiftness of a snake striking its prey, a fool lunges into his own destruction.
23He’s like a man about to be executed with an arrow
right through his heart—
like a bird that flies into the net,
unaware of what’s about to happen.
24So listen to me, you young men.
You’d better take my words seriously!
25Control your sexual urges and guard your hearts against lust.
Don’t let your passions get out of hand
and don’t lock your eyes onto a beautiful woman.
Why would you want to even get close
to temptation and seduction,
to have an affair with her?
26She has pierced the souls of multitudes of men—
many mighty ones have fallen
and have been brought down by her. # 7:26 The Aramaic is even more descriptive: “She has slain a multitude of mighty ones; they’ve all been killed by her.”
27If you’re looking for the road to hell,
just go looking for her house! # 7:27 This parable (vv. 6–27) not only warns against the obvious evils of adultery and immorality, but also serves as a warning to the anointed young men in ministry not to be seduced by the religious system. Wisdom looks from the window (revelation and insight—see Ezek. 8) of her house (the true church of Jesus) and sees a young man (not fully mature—see 1 John 2:12–14) who has placed himself in the path of sin. This made him vulnerable to the seduction of the “harlot” system of a works-based religion that enticed him into her bed (partnership, covering, and ordination with her and her system—see Rev. 17–18) covered with Egyptian linens (Egypt is a picture of the world system that holds people in bondage). She is loud and stubborn (the old self-life never dealt with) and will not remain in her house (the true church of Jesus). She lives in the darkness of compromise and her ways are the ways of death. She doesn’t remain faithful to her husband (the Bridegroom-God). The two women of Proverbs are the harlot mentioned here and the virtuous woman found in chapter 31, who speak of two systems of worship. One is true and virtuous; the other is false and seductive.