1 DOES NOT skillful and godly Wisdom cry out, and understanding raise her voice [in contrast to the loose woman]?
2 On the top of the heights beside the way, where the paths meet, stands Wisdom [skillful and godly];
3 At the gates at the entrance of the town, at the coming in at the doors, she cries out:
4 To you, O men, I call, and my voice is directed to the sons of men.
5 O you simple and thoughtless ones, understand prudence; you [self-confident] fools, be of an understanding heart. [Isa. 32:6.]
6 Hear, for I will speak excellent and princely things; and the opening of my lips shall be for right things.
7 For my mouth shall utter truth, and wrongdoing is detestable and loathsome to my lips.
8 All the words of my mouth are righteous (upright and in right standing with God); there is nothing contrary to truth or crooked in them.
9 They are all plain to him who understands [and opens his heart], and right to those who find knowledge [and live by it].
10 Receive my instruction in preference to [striving for] silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold,
11 For skillful and godly Wisdom is better than rubies or pearls, and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it. [Job 28:15; Ps. 19:10; 119:127.]
12 I, Wisdom [from God], make prudence my dwelling, and I find out knowledge and discretion. [James 1:5.]
13 The reverent fear and worshipful awe of the Lord [includes] the hatred of evil; pride, arrogance, the evil way, and perverted and twisted speech I hate.
14 I have counsel and sound knowledge, I have understanding, I have might and power.
15 By me kings reign and rulers decree justice. [Dan. 2:21; Rom. 13:1.]
16 By me princes rule, and nobles, even all the judges and governors of the earth.
17 I love those who love me, and those who seek me early and diligently shall find me. [I Sam. 2:30; Ps. 91:14; John 14:21; James 1:5.]
18 Riches and honor are with me, enduring wealth and righteousness (uprightness in every area and relation, and right standing with God). [Prov. 3:16; Matt. 6:33.]
19 My fruit is better than gold, yes, than refined gold, and my increase than choice silver.
20 I [Wisdom] walk in the way of righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation), in the midst of the paths of justice,
21 That I may cause those who love me to inherit [true] riches and that I may fill their treasuries.
22 The Lord formed and brought me [Wisdom] forth at the beginning of His way, before His acts of old.
23 I [Wisdom] was inaugurated and ordained from everlasting, from the beginning, before ever the earth existed. [John 1:1; I Cor. 1:24.]
24 When there were no deeps, I was brought forth, when there were no fountains laden with water.
25 Before the mountains were settled, before the hills, I was brought forth, [Job 15:7, 8.]
26 While as yet He had not made the land or the fields or the first of the dust of the earth.
27 When He prepared the heavens, I [Wisdom] was there; when He drew a circle upon the face of the deep and stretched out the firmament over it,
28 When He made firm the skies above, when He established the fountains of the deep,
29 When He gave to the sea its limit and His decree that the waters should not transgress [across the boundaries set by] His command, when He appointed the foundations of the earth–[Job 38:10, 11; Ps. 104:6-9; Jer. 5:22.]
30 Then I [Wisdom] was beside Him as a master and director of the work; and I was daily His delight, rejoicing before Him always, [Matt. 3:17; John 1:2, 18.]
31 Rejoicing in His inhabited earth and delighting in the sons of men. [Ps. 16:3.]
32 Now therefore listen to me, O you sons; for blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are those who keep my ways. [Ps. 119:1, 2; 128:1, 2; Luke 11:28.]
33 Hear instruction and be wise, and do not refuse or neglect it.
34 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors.
35 For whoever finds me [Wisdom] finds life and draws forth and obtains favor from the Lord.
36 But he who misses me or sins against me wrongs and injures himself; all who hate me love and court death.