Proverbs Chapter 7 and 8 describes two women and their strategies for getting the attention of anyone who will listen to them. In Chapter 7 verse 6, the writer observes from the window of his house, young men and a youth who had no sense. I know a lot of young people who are smart and intelligent but who just live life without any thought of the implication of the choices that they make and how it might affect their future.
A UK politician who is a candidate for the office of Prime Minister, recently had to face questions over his use of Cocaine 20 years ago. The action as at the time he committed it, was a criminal offence and if he had been caught, he would have gone to prison. A voice lured him to have a taste and enjoy the release he would feel from the effect of taking that drug. Did he know that 20 years down the line, this action would come back to bite him? Definitely not or else he would not have tried it.
Such is the lure and attraction of this woman described in Proverbs chapter 7. She represents everything that is tempting to satisfy the longings and desires of the flesh. She is described as brazen, shameless, loud, a smooth talker and sexually immoral. She lurks about looking out for any man she can tempt with a promise of a great time (describing her bed and all that comes with it) and giving them the impression that nothing was in the way to prevent them from having an illicit relationship (Her husband had travelled and would not be back for a long time)
There is no doubt that many who are hooked on destructive habits were lured in at a young age where people tend to be carefree. Anyone at any age however can be lured in if they listen to this ‘woman’ who is a symbol of various temptations leading to sin and the consequences of sin. This woman is so persuasive that those who fall under her influence have no idea what lies at the end of the road until it is too late.
While concluding chapter 7, the writer warns the reader, “Now then, my sons, listen to me; pay attention to what I say. Do not let your heart turn to her ways or stray into her paths. Many are the victims she has brought down; her slain are a mighty throng. Her house is a highway to the grave, leading down to the chambers of death.” (Proverbs 7: 24-27)
There is a stark contrast between the woman in Proverbs Chapter 7 and the one in Chapter 8. We read that the first one ‘lurks’. The dictionary meaning of ‘lurk’ is “be or remain hidden so as to wait in ambush for someone or something.” She looks out for those she can convince to do her bidding. She isolates, persuades and then kills her victims.
The second woman on the other hand is described as going to the highest point along the way where she is visible to all and there ‘she makes her stand’ (Proverbs 8:2) She does not speak with enticing words, rather she raises her voice out loud so that everyone can hear her.
Unlike the first woman, who is anonymous, this second woman introduces herself as ‘wisdom’ and presents her credentials, “‘I, wisdom, dwell together with prudence I possess knowledge and discretion” (Proverbs 8: 12) She argues for what is good and she speaks out against wickedness and injustice. While the first woman persuades men with things that are ephemeral like satisfying their physical needs, Lady wisdom offers those who come to her, something more substantial and long-lived. “With me are riches and honour, enduring wealth and prosperity.” (Verse 18)
To back up her credibility, Lady Wisdom points readers to her source - God. “The Lord brought me forth as the first of his works, before his deeds of old; I was formed long ages ago, at the very beginning, when the world came to be. “ (Proverbs 8:22) For this second woman, her passionate words to her hearers is to point them in the direction that will lead them to all the blessings that God has in store for them. She does not mince her words and directs her words to everyone within hearing distance. She knows that without her, man is doomed to making choices that would destroy them, so she is relentless in making her voice heard at the gates of the city which is like our modern day shopping mall or central pack.
These two woman are symbolic of the choices that we face daily. We either heed the signs and sounds of satanic influences around us or we seek the wisdom of God. Jesus made this possible by coming into the world to die for us and granting us access to God by His Spirit. The more we walk in communion with God’s Spirit and adhere to God’s word, the less likely we will be influenced by the lure and influences of the evil one.
This is the war we fight daily and we need to listen to the cry of Lady Wisdom shouting from the highest point, “For those who find me find life and receive favour from the Lord. But those who fail to find me harm themselves; all who hate me love death.” (Proverbs 8:36)
Steve Popoola is the editor of Biblepraise Newsletter and the founder of the Biblepraise Fellowship Online at http://www.biblepraise.org. He lives in Kent, United Kingdom, where he works as an IT Professional. He currently serves as a Worship Leader as well as Home Group Leader in his local church and on occasion, speaks at invited events. He is the founder of the BiblepraiseFellowship Online Ministry and Moderator/Editor of the Biblepraise Newsletter. He can be reached through His email address, firstname.lastname@example.org