Author: Solomon and others
Date: ca. 10th century BC and later
This book contains the collective wisdom of the people of Israel. It is a collection of expressions, attributed to Solomon, in which the Israelites recorded how they should live before GOD. So living is wise. The spells were also taught by wise men.
The idea of wisdom occurs in the Old Testament. Only God possesses all wisdom. He is the creator of all life and knows everything that happens and will happen. God owns:
Everything that lives,
These 3 bear witness to the wisdom of God. In 8:22-31 it is said that wisdom coexisted with God before the creation of the world. The wisdom of God governs nature and man. His ways are unfathomable.
GOD has revealed to us a portion of His wisdom. The BIBLE uses 3 terms for this wisdom.
1. Skills to master certain techniques
For example shipbuilding.
2. Art of making right decisions in moral or other matters.
For example: Preachers & architects if they make the right decisions.
3. Human wisdom for the right way of life.
It includes all aspects of life, starting with the fear (respect) of God. This book provides an overview of this wisdom that applies to many areas of life. To name a few:
Relationship to the parents,
Search for truth,
The vanity of wealth,
The knowledge of God,
The perfect housewife.
The first and central theme in this book is God as creator and ruler. He gave the world its order, and if we have any understanding, we see that He is supreme. Life has many mysteries, but God knows them all and offers His guidance.
The second theme is: All life can be redeemed. Because God made life, it can be completely dedicated to God.
The third theme is: serving GOD has meaning and makes life rich. He made life with an order. We can fully enjoy life if we respect this order.
The fourth theme is: There is a choice between life and death. We must choose from two paths, that of death or of life. The wise chooses life and the fool chooses death.
1. Introduction (1:1-7),
2. 13 Lessons on Wisdom (1:8-9:18),
3. Book 1: The Proverbs of Solomon (10:1-22:16),
4. Words of the wise (22:17-24:34),
5. Book 2: The Proverbs of Solomon (25:1-29:27),
6. Proverbs of Argur,
7. Words of Lemuel; Praise the decent housewife (31:1-31).