Proverbs 8:22-26 – “The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old. 23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was. 24 When 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 was I brought forth: 26 While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.”
Most readers of Solomon’s proverbs would consider them direct and practical; perhaps even confrontational regarding the sinful nature of man. Reading today’s devotion in Proverbs 8, some might have the attitude that the balance of Proverbs 8, specifically Proverbs 8:22-36, is too heavy in doctrine and too light on practical instruction.
Granted, the latter half of Proverbs 8 is both deep and lofty, but necessary if we are to grasp an understanding that “Wisdom”, though often characterized as a maiden in Proverbs (feminine in form), was ultimately personified in Jesus Christ. In other words “Wisdom”, what I have referred to as “Uncommon Common Sense”, is embodied in the person of Christ, the Living, Eternal Word of God, the Word made flesh (John 1:15).
Solomon has challenged children to hear and heed the instructions of parents as a source of practical wisdom throughout this book (Proverbs 1:8-9; 4:1; 6:20-21). In Proverbs 8, Solomon identifies our Creator, the LORD, as the source of Wisdom.
Proverbs 8:22-26 – “The LORD [Jehovah; Yahweh; Eternal, Self-existent God] possessed [birthed; begotten; created] me [Wisdom] in the beginning [first] of his way, before his works of old. 23 I [Wisdom] was set up [ordained; anointed] from everlasting [eternal; perpetual; without end], from the beginning, or ever [ancient time; antiquity] the earth was [i.e. before the earth was created]. 24 When there were no depths [deep places in the sea], I was brought forth; when there were no fountains [springs] abounding with water. 25 Before the mountains were settled [lit. sink down; note – we know there are mountain ranges in the ocean], before the hills was I [Wisdom] brought forth [formed]: 26 While as yet He had not made [created; wrought] the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust [clay; ground] of the world.”
I close with a brief explanation that I trust will add a degree of clarity to this wonderful passage. Consider Proverbs 2:6.
Proverbs 2:6 – “For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.”
For instance, when a mother gives birth to an infant son we know that child, though having just been born, was conceived nine months prior to its birth and was living in his mother’s womb.
The same is true of Wisdom. Wisdom exists eternally with God and was, according to Proverbs 2:6, given birth as “knowledge and understanding” when God spoke. With the exception of man’s creation (Genesis 1:26-28; 2:7-8, 18, 21-25), God created the universe by His spoken word!
We will return to this wonderful account of Wisdom and creation next month. I close today with an invitation for you to read the account of creation in Genesis 1-2.
Copyright 2014 – Travis D. Smith