The Excellence of Wisdom
1Does not ⚓wisdom cry out,
And understanding lift up her voice?
2She takes her stand on the top of the high hill,
Beside the way, where the paths meet.
3She cries out by the gates, at the entry of the city,
At the entrance of the doors:
4“To you, O men, I call,
And my voice is to the sons of men.
5O you simple ones, understand prudence,
And you fools, be of an understanding heart.
6Listen, for I will speak of ⚓excellent things,
And from the opening of my lips will come right things;
7For my mouth will speak truth;
Wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
8All the words of my mouth are with righteousness;
Nothing crooked or perverse is in them.
9They are all plain to him who understands,
And right to those who find knowledge.
10Receive my instruction, and not silver,
And knowledge rather than choice gold;
11⚓For wisdom is better than rubies,
And all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her.
12“I, wisdom, dwell with prudence,
And find out knowledge and discretion.
13⚓The fear of the Lordis to hate evil;
⚓Pride and arrogance and the evil way
And ⚓the perverse mouth I hate.
14Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom;
I am understanding, ⚓I have strength.
15⚓By me kings reign,
And rulers decree justice.
16By me princes rule, and nobles,
All the judges of the earth.
17⚓I love those who love me,
And ⚓those who seek me diligently will find me.
18⚓Riches and honor are with me,
Enduring riches and righteousness.
19My fruit is better than gold, yes, than fine gold,
And my revenue than choice silver.
20I traverse the way of righteousness,
In the midst of the paths of justice,
21That I may cause those who love me to inherit wealth,
That I may fill their treasuries.
22“The⚓Lord possessed me at the beginning of His way,
Before His works of old.
23⚓I have been established from everlasting,
From the beginning, before there was ever an earth.
24When there were no depths I was brought forth,
When there were no fountains abounding with water.
25⚓Before the mountains were settled,
Before the hills, I was brought forth;
26While as yet He had not made the earth or the fields,
Or the primal dust of the world.
27When He prepared the heavens, I was there,
When He drew a circle on the face of the deep,
28When He established the clouds above,
When He strengthened the fountains of the deep,
29⚓When He assigned to the sea its limit,
So that the waters would not transgress His command,
When ⚓He marked out the foundations of the earth,
30⚓Then I was beside Him as a master craftsman;
⚓And I was daily His delight,
Rejoicing always before Him,
31Rejoicing in His inhabited world,
And ⚓my delight was with the sons of men.
32“Now therefore, listen to me, my children,
For ⚓blessed are those who keep my ways.
33Hear instruction and be wise,
And do not disdain it.
34⚓Blessed is the man who listens to me,
Watching daily at my gates,
Waiting at the posts of my doors.
35For whoever finds me finds life,
And ⚓obtains favor from the Lord;
36But he who sins against me ⚓wrongs his own soul;
All those who hate me love death.”