8
Wisdom’s call
1Does not wisdom call out?
Does not understanding raise her voice?
2At the highest point along the way,
where the paths meet, she takes her stand;
3beside 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.
5You who are simple, gain prudence;
you who are foolish, set your hearts on it.#
6Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say;
I open my lips to speak what is right.
7My mouth speaks what is true,
for my lips detest wickedness.
8All the words of my mouth are just;
none of them is crooked or perverse.
9To the discerning all of them are right;
they are upright to those who have found knowledge.
10Choose my instruction instead of silver,
knowledge rather than choice gold,
11for 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.
13To fear the Lord is to hate evil;
I hate pride and arrogance,
evil behaviour and perverse speech.
14Counsel and sound judgment are mine;
I have insight, I have power.
15By me kings reign
and rulers issue decrees that are just;
16by me princes govern,
and nobles – all who rule on earth.#
17I love those who love me,
and those who seek me find me.
18With me are riches and honour,
enduring wealth and prosperity.
19My fruit is better than fine gold;
what I yield surpasses choice silver.
20I walk in the way of righteousness,
along the paths of justice,
21bestowing 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,# #
before his deeds of old;
23I was formed long ages ago,
at the very beginning, when the world came to be.
24When there were no watery depths, I was given birth,
when there were no springs overflowing with water;
25before the mountains were settled in place,
before the hills, I was given birth,
26before he made the world or its fields
or any of the dust of the earth.
27I was there when he set the heavens in place,
when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep,
28when he established the clouds above
and fixed securely the fountains of the deep,
29when 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# at his side.
I was filled with delight day after day,
rejoicing always in his presence,
31rejoicing 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.
33Listen to my instruction and be wise;
do not disregard it.
34Blessed are those who listen to me,
watching daily at my doors,
waiting at my doorway.
35For those who find me find life
and receive favour from the Lord.
36But those who fail to find me harm themselves;
all who hate me love death.’
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