Proverbs 8


Notice the abrupt change in mood, content, and delivery from the last chapter to this one.

הֲלֹא־חָכְמָה תִקְרָא וּתְבוּנָה תִּתֵּן קוֹלָהּ׃   8:1

Prov. 8:1   Does wisdom not call,

                             and understanding put forth its voice?

בְּרֹאשׁ־מְרוֹמִים עֲלֵי־דָרֶךְ בֵּית נְתִיבוֹת נִצָּבָה׃   8:2

Prov. 8:2   On the highest of the heights,

                             above the way of the site of the pathways,

                     it takes its stand.

לְיַד־שְׁעָרִים לְפִי־קָרֶת מְבוֹא פְתָחִים תָּרֹנָּה׃   8:3

Prov. 8:3   To the side of the gates,

                             to the openings of the city,

                     the approaches of the doorways,

                             it would cry aloud:

The rest of this chapter are the words of the female called Wisdom.

אֲלֵיכֶם אִישִׁים אֶקְרָא וְקוֹלִי אֶל־בְּנֵי אָדָם׃   8:4

Prov. 8:4   “I would call to you, men,

                             and my voice is to the sons of humanity.”

הָבִינוּ פְתָאיִם עָרְמָה וּכְסִילִים הָבִינוּ לֵב׃   8:5

Prov. 8:5   “Recognize prudence, foolish ones,

                             and understand the heart, arrogant ones.”

שִׁמְעוּ כִּי־נְגִידִים אֲדַבֵּר וּמִפְתַּח שְׂפָתַי מֵישָׁרִים׃   8:6

Prov. 8:6   “Listen, for I will speak of regal things,

                             and the utterance of my lips will be of right things.”

כִּי־אֱמֶת יֶהְגֶּה חִכִּי וְתוֹעֲבַת שְׂפָתַי רֶשַׁע׃   8:7

Prov. 8:7   “For my mouth will speak truth,

                             as wickedness is an abomination of my lips.”

בְּצֶדֶק כָּל־אִמְרֵי־פִי אֵין בָּהֶם נִפְתָּל וְעִקֵּשׁ׃   8:8

Prov. 8:8   “All the utterances of my mouth are in righteousness;

                             nothing in them is twisted or perverse.”

כֻּלָּם נְכֹחִים לַמֵּבִין וִישָׁרִים לְמֹצְאֵי דָעַת׃   8:9

Prov. 8:9    “All of them are straightforward to one who understands,

                             and correct to the discoverers of knowledge.”

קְחוּ־מוּסָרִי וְאַל־כָּסֶף וְדַעַת מֵחָרוּץ נִבְחָר׃   8:10

Prov. 8:10   “Acquire my discipline rather than silver,

                             and knowledge more than the choicest gold.”

כִּי־טוֹבָה חָכְמָה מִפְּנִינִים וְכָל־חֲפָצִים לֹא יִשְׁווּ־בָהּ׃   8:11

Prov. 8:11   “For wisdom is better than pearls,

                             and no pleasures can be compared to it.”

אֲנִי־חָכְמָה שָׁכַנְתִּי עָרְמָה וְדַעַת מְזִמּוֹת אֶמְצָא׃   8:12

Prov. 8:12   “I, Wisdom, establish prudence

                             and can assure perception of purposes.”

יִרְאַת יְהוָה שְׂנֹאת רָע גֵּאָה וְגָאוֹן וְדֶרֶךְ רָע וּפִי תַהְפֻּכוֹת שָׂנֵאתִי׃   8:13

Prov. 8:13   “Revering the Lord is hating evil, pride and arrogance, and an unkind way,

                             and I hate a mouth of perversities.”

לִי־עֵצָה וְתוּשִׁיָּה אֲנִי בִינָה לִי גְבוּרָה׃   8:14

Prov. 8:14   “Counsel is mine, and abiding success;

                             I am perception; power belongs to me.”

בִּי מְלָכִים יִמְלֹכוּ וְרוֹזְנִים יְחֹקְקוּ צֶדֶק׃   8:15

Prov. 8:15   “Kings can reign because of me,

                             and lords can decree justice.”

בִּי שָׂרִים יָשֹׂרוּ וּנְדִיבִים כָּל־שֹׁפְטֵי צֶדֶק׃   8:16

Prov. 8:16   “Princes can govern because of me,

                             and nobles, all judges of the earth.”

אֲנִי (אֹהֲבֶיהָ) [אֹהֲבַי] אֵהָב וּמְשַׁחֲרַי יִמְצָאֻנְנִי׃   8:17

Prov. 8:17   “I will love those loving me,

                             and those diligently seeking me will find me.”

The word in the parentheses is misspelled.  As it stands (with the heh suffix) it can be translated only as loving it (or her).  It seems much more reasonable to read loving me, and the correction in the brackets alters the translation to that.

עֹשֶׁר־וְכָבֹוד אִתִּי הֹון עָתֵק וּצְדָקָה׃   8:18

Prov. 8:18   “Wealth and honor are with me,

                             enduring substance and righteousness.”

טֹוב פִּרְיִי מֵחָרוּץ וּמִפָּז וּתְבוּאָתִי מִכֶּסֶף נִבְחָר׃   8:19

Prov. 8:19   “My fruit is better than gold, or even pure gold,

                             my produce than the choicest silver.”

בְּאֹרַח־צְדָקָה אֲהַלֵּך בְּתֹוךְ נְתִיבֹות מִשְׁפָּט׃   8:20

Prov. 8:20   “I will proceed on the righteous path,

                             in the midst of the pathways of judgment,

לְהַנְחִיל אֹהֲבַי יֵשׁ וְאֹצְרֹתֵיהֶם אֲמַלֵּא׃   8:21

Prov. 8:21   causing lovers of me to inherit substance,

                             as I would fill their storehouses.”

יְהוָה קָנָנִי רֵאשִׁית דַּרְכּוֹ קֶדֶם מִפְעָלָיו מֵאָז׃   8:22

Prov. 8:22   “The Lord first originated me His way

                             at a time before His works.”

This verse and most of the remaining verses of this chapter seem to support my contention about the Lord creating the knowledge of the universe as the first act of creation (see my remarks about information at Gene.1:1 notes).

מֵעוֹלָם נִסַּכְתִּי מֵרֹאשׁ מִקַּדְמֵי־אָרֶץ׃   8:23

Prov. 8:23   “I was set up forever from the beginning,

                             from before the time of the earth.”

בְּאֵין־תְּהֹמוֹת חוֹלָלְתִּי בְּאֵין מַעְיָנוֹת נִכְבַּדֵּי־מָיִם׃   8:24

Prov. 8:24   “When there were no depths, I was born,

                             when there were no springs, the abundance of water.”

בְּטֶרֶם הָרִים הָטְבָּעוּ לִפְנֵי גְבָעוֹת חוֹלָלְתִּי׃   8:25

Prov. 8:25   “Before mountains were planted,

                             before hills, I was born,

עַד־לֹא עָשָׂה אֶרֶץ וְחוּצוֹת וְרֹאשׁ עָפְרוֹת תֵּבֵל׃   8:26

Prov. 8:26   while He had not yet made earth or outer things

                             or the first dust of the world.”

בַּהֲכִינֹו מַיִם שָׁם אָנִי בְּחוּקֹו חוּג עַל־פְּנֵי תְהֹום׃   8:27

Prov. 8:27   “With His setting up the heavens, there I was,

                             on His tracing out a circuit upon the face of the deep,

בְּאַמְּצֹו שְׁחָקִים מִמָּעַל בַּעֲזֹוז עִינֹות תְּהֹום ׃   8:28

Prov. 8:28   at His making the clouds firm from above,

                             at the strengthening of the fountains of the deep,

בְּשׂוּמֹו לַיָּם חֻקֹּו וּמַיִם לֹא יַעַבְרוּ־פִיו בְּחוּקֹו מֹוסְדֵי אָרֶץ׃   8:29

Prov. 8:29   on His directing His decree to the sea

                             that water may not transgress His ‘mouth,’

                       at His marking out the foundations of the earth.”

וָאֶהְיֶה אֶצְלוֹ אָמוֹן וָאֶהְיֶה שַׁעֲשֻׁעִים יוֹם יוֹם מְשַׂחֶקֶת לְפָנָיו בְּכָל־עֵת׃   8:30

Prov. 8:30   “And I was training near Him,

                             and daily I was the delights of the day,

                      sporting before Him at every occasion,

מְשַׂחֶקֶת בְּתֵבֵל אַרְצוֹ וְשַׁעֲשֻׁעַי אֶת־בְּנֵי אָדָם׃   8:31

Prov. 8:31   sporting in the world of His region.

                             And my delights are near the children of humanity.”

וְעַתָּה בָנִים שִׁמְעוּ־לִי וְאַשְׁרֵי דְּרָכַי יִשְׁמֹרוּ׃   8:32

Prov. 8:32   “So now, children, listen to me,

                             and let those who keep my ways be happy.”

שִׁמְעוּ מוּסָר וַחֲכָמוּ וְאַל־תִּפְרָעוּ׃   8:33

Prov. 8:33   “Hear instruction that you do not ignore it,

                             and become wise.”

אַשְׁרֵי אָדָם שֹׁמֵעַ לִי לִשְׁקֹד עַל־דַּלְתֹתַי יוֹם יוֹם לִשְׁמֹר מְזוּזֹת פְּתָחָי׃   8:34

Prov. 8:34   “Happy is the man listening to me,

                             watching at my gates day by day,

                      guarding the posts of my doors.”

כִּי מֹצְאִי (מֹצְאֵי) [מָצָא] חַיִּים וַיָּפֶק רָצֹון מֵיְהוָה׃   8:35

Prov. 8:35   “For he who finds me finds life,

                             and elicits favor from the Lord.”

The word in the parentheses is incorrect, being a repeat of the previous word, translated as he who finds me.  The correction in the brackets is translated as finds.

וְחֹטְאִי חֹמֵס נַפְשֹׁו כָּל־מְשַׂנְאַי אָהֲבוּ מָוֶת׃   8:36

Prov. 8:36   “But he who forfeits me is wronging his soul.

                             All hating me love death.”


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