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The Appeal of Wisdom[a]

Does not wisdom call out?
Does not understanding raise her voice?
At the top[b] of the prominent places along the way,
at the intersection[c] of the paths she has taken her stand;
beside the gates opening into[d] the city,
at the entrance of the doorways she cries out:[e]
“To you, O people,[f] I call out,
and my voice calls[g] to all mankind.[h]
You who are naive, discern[i] wisdom!
And you fools, understand discernment![j]
Listen, for I will speak excellent things,[k]
and my lips will utter[l] what is right.
For my mouth[m] speaks truth,[n]
and my lips[o] hate wickedness.[p]
All the words of my mouth are righteous;[q]
there is nothing in them twisted[r] or crooked.
All of them are clear[s] to the discerning
and upright to those who find knowledge.
10 Receive my instruction[t] rather than[u] silver,
and knowledge rather than choice gold.
11 For wisdom is better than rubies,
and desirable things cannot be compared[v] to her.
12 “I, wisdom, have dwelt[w] with prudence,[x]
and I find[y] knowledge and discretion.
13 The fear of the Lord is to hate[z] evil;
I hate arrogant pride[aa] and the evil way
and perverse utterances.[ab]
14 Counsel and sound wisdom belong to me;[ac]
I possess understanding and might.
15 By me kings reign,
and by me[ad] potentates[ae] decree[af] righteousness;
16 by me princes rule,
as well as nobles and[ag] all righteous judges.[ah]
17 I will love[ai] those who love me,
and those who seek me diligently will find me.
18 Riches and honor are with me,
long-lasting wealth and righteousness.
19 My fruit is better than the purest gold,[aj]
and my harvest[ak] is better than choice silver.
20 I walk in the path of righteousness,
in the pathway of justice,
21 that I may cause[al] those who love me to inherit wealth,
and that I may fill[am] their treasuries.[an]
22 The Lord created[ao] me as the beginning[ap] of his works,[aq]
before his deeds of long ago.
23 From eternity I have been fashioned,[ar]
from the beginning, from before the world existed.[as]
24 When there were no deep oceans[at] I was born,[au]
when there were no springs overflowing[av] with water;
25 before the mountains were set in place—
before the hills—I was born,[aw]
26 before he made the earth and its fields,[ax]
or the top soil[ay] of the world.
27 When he established the heavens, I was there;
when he marked out the horizon[az] over the face of the deep,
28 when he established the clouds above,
when he secured the fountains of the deep,[ba]
29 when he gave the sea his decree[bb]
that the waters should not pass over his command,[bc]
when he marked out the foundations of the earth,
30 then I was[bd] beside him as a master craftsman,[be]
and I was his delight[bf] day by day,
rejoicing before him at all times,
31 rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth,[bg]
and delighting[bh] in its people.[bi]
32 “So now, children,[bj] listen to me;

blessed are those who keep my ways.
33 Listen to my instruction[bk] so that you may be wise,[bl]
and do not neglect it.
34 Blessed is the one[bm] who listens to me,
watching[bn] at my doors day by day,
waiting[bo] beside my doorway.[bp]
35 For the one who finds me has found[bq] life
and received[br] favor from the Lord.
36 But the one who misses me[bs] brings harm[bt] to himself;[bu]
all who hate[bv] me love death.”


  1. Proverbs 8:1 sn In this chapter wisdom is personified. In 1:20-33 wisdom proclaims her value, and in 3:19-26 wisdom is the agent of creation. Such a personification has affinities with the wisdom literature of the ancient Near East, and may have drawn on some of that literature, albeit with appropriate safeguards (Claudia V. Camp, Wisdom and the Feminine in the Book of Proverbs, 23-70). Wisdom in Proverbs 8, however, is not a deity like Egypt’s Ma'at or the Assyrian-Babylonian Ishtar. It is simply presented as if it were a self-conscious divine being distinct but subordinate to God, but in reality it is the personification of the attribute of wisdom displayed by God (R. B. Y. Scott, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes [AB], 69-72; and R. Marcus, “On Biblical Hypostases of Wisdom,” HUCA 23 [1950-1951]: 157-71). Many have equated wisdom in this chapter with Jesus Christ. This connection works only in so far as Jesus reveals the nature of the Father, just as Proverbs presents wisdom as an attribute of God. Jesus’ claims included wisdom (Matt 12:42) and a unique knowledge of God (Matt 11:25-27). He even personified wisdom in a way that was similar to Proverbs (Matt 11:19). Paul saw the fulfillment of wisdom in Christ (Col 1:15-20; 2:3) and affirmed that Christ became our wisdom in the crucifixion (1 Cor 1:24, 30). So this personification in Proverbs provides a solid foundation for the similar revelation of wisdom in Christ. But because wisdom is a creation of God in Proverbs 8, it is unlikely that wisdom here is to be identified with Jesus Christ. The chapter unfolds in three cycles: After an introduction (1-3), wisdom makes an invitation (4, 5) and explains that she is noble, just, and true (6-9); she then makes another invitation (10) and explains that she is valuable (11-21); and finally, she tells how she preceded and delights in creation (22-31) before concluding with the third invitation (32-36).
  2. Proverbs 8:2 tn Heb “head.” The word רֹאשׁ (roʾsh, “head”) refers to the highest area or most important place in the elevated area. The contrast with chapter 7 is striking. There the wayward woman lurked at the corners in the street at night; here wisdom is at the highest point in the open places in view of all.
  3. Proverbs 8:2 tn Heb “at the house of the paths.” The “house” is not literal here, but refers to where the paths meet (cf. ASV, NIV), that is, the “crossroads” (so NAB, NRSV, NLT).
  4. Proverbs 8:3 tn Heb “at the mouth of.”
  5. Proverbs 8:3 tn The cry is a very loud ringing cry that could not be missed. The term רָנַן (ranan) means “to give a ringing cry.” It is often only a shrill sound that might come with a victory in battle, but its use in the psalms for praise shows that it also can have clear verbal content, as it does here. For wisdom to stand in the street and give such a ringing cry would mean that it could be heard by all. It was a proclamation.
  6. Proverbs 8:4 tn Heb “men.” Although it might be argued in light of the preceding material that males would be particularly addressed by wisdom here, the following material indicates a more universal appeal. Cf. TEV, NLT “to all of you.”
  7. Proverbs 8:4 tn The verb “calls” does not appear in the Hebrew text, but is supplied in the translation for the sake of style.
  8. Proverbs 8:4 tn Heb “sons of man.” Cf. NAB “the children of men”; NCV, NLT “all people”; NRSV “all that live.”
  9. Proverbs 8:5 tn The imperative of בִּין (bin) means “to understand; to discern.” The call is for the simple to understand what wisdom is, not just to gain it.
  10. Proverbs 8:5 tn Heb “heart.” The noun לֵב (lev, “heart”) often functions metonymically for wisdom, understanding, discernment.
  11. Proverbs 8:6 tc The MT reads נְגִידִים (negidim) “nobles.” HALOT interprets this as the plural form of the noun that lies behind the preposition נֶגֶד (neged), meaning “correct, proper expressions” (HALOT 667, s.v. נֶגֶד). The translation follows BHS in reading נְגָדִים (negadim) “noble things” as a substantival adjective based on the same root.
  12. Proverbs 8:6 tn Heb “opening of my lips” (so KJV, NASB). The noun “lips” is a metonymy of cause, with the organ of speech put for what is said.
  13. Proverbs 8:7 tn Heb “roof of the mouth.” This expression is a metonymy of cause for the activity of speaking.
  14. Proverbs 8:7 tn The word “truth” (אֱמֶת, ʾemet) is derived from the verbal root אָמַן (ʾaman) which means “to be firm, trustworthy.” There are a number of derived nouns that have the sense of reliability: “pillars,” “master craftsman,” “nurse,” “guardian.” Modifiers related to this group of words include things like “faithful,” “surely,” “truly” (ʾamen). In the derived stems the verb develops various nuances: The Niphal has the meanings of “reliable, faithful, sure, steadfast,” and the Hiphil has the meaning “believe” (i.e., consider something dependable). The noun “truth” means what is reliable or dependable, firm or sure.
  15. Proverbs 8:7 sn Wise lips detest wickedness; wisdom hates speaking wicked things. In fact, speaking truth results in part from detesting wickedness.
  16. Proverbs 8:7 tn Heb “wickedness is an abomination to my lips” (so KJV, NASB, NRSV).
  17. Proverbs 8:8 tn The phrase could be rendered with an understood ellipsis: “all the words of my mouth [are said] in righteousness”; or the preposition could be interpreted as a beth essentiae: “all the words of my mouth are righteousness.”
  18. Proverbs 8:8 sn The verb פָּתַל (patal) means “to twist.” In the Niphal it means “to wrestle” (to twist oneself). It was used in Gen 30:8 for the naming of Naphtali, with the motivation for the name from this verb: “with great struggling.” Here it describes speech that is twisted. It is a synonym for the next word, which means “twisted; crooked; perverse.”
  19. Proverbs 8:9 tn Heb “front of.” Describing the sayings as “right in front” means they are open, obvious, and clear, as opposed to words that might be twisted or perverse. The parallel word “upright” means “straight, smooth, right.” Wisdom’s teachings are in plain view and intelligible for those who find knowledge.
  20. Proverbs 8:10 tn Heb “discipline.” The term refers to instruction that trains with discipline (e.g., Prov 1:2).
  21. Proverbs 8:10 tn Heb “and not” (so KJV, NASB); NAB “in preference to.”
  22. Proverbs 8:11 tn The verb יִשְׁווּ (yishevu, from שָׁוָה, shavah) can be rendered “are not comparable” or with a modal nuance, “cannot be compared” with her.
  23. Proverbs 8:12 tn The verb שָׁכַנְתִּי (shakanti) is a perfect form which should normally be past or perfective. Some of this root’s perfect forms follow stative morphology (though the imperfect forms consistently use the morphology of dynamic verbs). The meanings of some verbs drift across the stative vs. dynamic boundary over time. If interpreted as a stative verb, it would be present tense.
  24. Proverbs 8:12 tn The noun is “shrewdness,” i.e., the right use of knowledge in special cases (see also the discussion in 1:4); cf. NLT “good judgment.” The word in this sentence is an adverbial accusative of specification.
  25. Proverbs 8:12 tn This verb form is an imperfect, showing habitual It has been reasonably proposed, based on Greek witnesses, that the verb can be read as a Niphal rather than a Qal. The proposal keeps the same consonants for this verb (but reads different vowels), however the Greek implies that the noun “knowledge” should be emended to a participle (requires adding a מ, [mem]). The meaning of this reading is “I reveal myself (or “am found”) making discretion known.
  26. Proverbs 8:13 tn The verb שָׂנֵא (saneʾ) means “to hate.” In this sentence it functions nominally as the predicate. Fearing the Lord is hating The verb translated “hate” has the basic idea of rejecting something spontaneously. For example, “Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated” (Mal 1:2b, 3a). It frequently has the idea of disliking or loathing (as English does), but almost always with an additional aspect of rejection. To “hate evil” is not only to dislike it, but to reject it and have nothing to do with it.
  27. Proverbs 8:13 tn Since גֵּאָה (geʾah, “pride”) and גָּאוֹן (gaʾon, “arrogance; pride”) are both from the same verbal root גָּאָה (gaʾah, “to rise up”), they should here be interpreted as one idea, forming a nominal hendiadys: “arrogant pride.”
  28. Proverbs 8:13 tn Heb “and a mouth of perverse things.” The word “mouth” is a metonymy of cause for what is said; and the noun תַהְפֻּכוֹת (tahpukhot, “perverse things”) means destructive things (the related verb is used for the overthrowing of Sodom).
  29. Proverbs 8:14 tc In the second half of v. 14 instead of אֲנִי (ʾani) the editors propose reading simply לִי (li) as the renderings in the LXX, Latin, and Syriac suggest. Then, in place of the לִי that comes in the same colon, read וְלִי (veli). While the MT is a difficult reading, it can be translated as it is. It would be difficult to know exactly what the ancient versions were reading, because their translations could have been derived from either text. They represent an effort to smooth out the Heb “To me [belong] counsel and sound wisdom.” The second colon in the verse has: “I, understanding, to me might.”sn In vv. 14-17 the pronouns come first and should receive greater prominence—although it is not always easy to do this with English.
  30. Proverbs 8:15 tn The words “by me” are understood to apply from the first line through the technique of ellipsis and double duty.
  31. Proverbs 8:15 tn The verb רָזַן (razan) means “to be weighty; to be judicious; to be commanding.” It only occurs in the Qal active participle in the plural as a substantive, meaning “potentates; rulers” (e.g., Ps 1:1-3). Cf. KJV, ASV “princes”; NAB “lawgivers.”
  32. Proverbs 8:15 sn This verb יְחֹקְקוּ (yekhoqequ) is related to the noun חֹק (khoq), which is a “statute; decree.” The verb is defined as “to cut in; to inscribe; to decree” (BDB 349 s.v. חָקַק). The point the verse is making is that when these potentates decree righteousness, it is by wisdom. History records all too often that these rulers acted as fools and opposed righteousness (cf. Ps 2:1-3). But people in power need wisdom to govern the earth (e.g., Isa 11:1-4 which predicts how Messiah will use wisdom to do this very thing). The point is underscored with the paronomasia in v. 15 with “kings” and “will reign” from the same root, and then in v. 16 with both “princes” and “rule” being cognate. The repetition of sounds and meanings strengthens the statements.
  33. Proverbs 8:16 tn The term “and” does not appear in the Hebrew text, but is supplied in the translation for the sake of smoothness and readability.
  34. Proverbs 8:16 tc Many of the MT mss read “sovereigns [princes], all the judges of the earth.” The LXX has “sovereigns…rule the earth.” But the MT manuscript in the text has “judges of righteousness.” C. H. Toy suggests that the Hebrew here has assimilated Ps 148:11 in its construction (Proverbs [ICC], 167). The expression “judges of the earth” is what one would expect, but the more difficult and unexpected reading, the one scribes might change, would be “judges of righteousness.” If that reading stands, then it would probably be interpreted as using an attributive genitive.
  35. Proverbs 8:17 tn The verb אָהֵב (ʾahev, “to love”) is stative, so in the imperfect form it is future tense. It still states a general In contrast to the word for “hate” (שָׂנֵא, saneʾ), the verb “love” (אָהֵב, ʾahev) includes within it the idea of choosing spontaneously. So in this line “loving” and “seeking” point out the means of finding wisdom.
  36. Proverbs 8:19 tn The two synonyms, “than gold, than fine gold” probably form a hendiadys here to express “the very finest gold.”
  37. Proverbs 8:19 tn The noun תְּבוּאָה (tevuʾah) means “harvest, yield of crops, produce” and by extension “profit” (HALOT 1679, s.v.). The agricultural imagery is an implied metaphor (hypocatastasis) for the gains that wisdom produces in one’s life.
  38. Proverbs 8:21 tn The infinitive construct expressing the purpose of the preceding “walk” in the way of righteousness. These verses say that wisdom is always on the way of righteousness for the purposes of bestowing the same to those who find her. If sin is involved, then wisdom has not been followed.
  39. Proverbs 8:21 tn Heb “and their treasuries I fill.” The imperfect verb expresses purposive modality because of the parallelism with the infinitive beginning the verse.
  40. Proverbs 8:21 tc The LXX adds at the end of this verse: “If I declare to you the things of daily occurrence, I will remember to recount the things of old.”
  41. Proverbs 8:22 tn There are two roots קָנָה (qanah) in Hebrew, one meaning “to possess,” and the other meaning “to create.” The earlier English versions did not know of the second root, but suspected in certain places that a meaning like that was necessary (e.g., Gen 4:1; 14:19; Deut 32:6). Ugaritic confirmed that it was indeed another root. The older versions have the translation “possess” because otherwise it sounds like God lacked wisdom and therefore created it at the beginning. They wanted to avoid saying that wisdom was not eternal. Arius liked the idea of Christ as the wisdom of God and so chose the translation “create.” Athanasius translated it, “constituted me as the head of creation.” The verb occurs twelve times in Proverbs with the meaning of “to acquire,” but the Greek and the Syriac versions have the meaning “create.” Although the idea is that wisdom existed before creation, the parallel ideas in these verses (“appointed,” “given birth”) argue for the translation of “create” or “establish” (R. N. Whybray, “Proverbs 8:22-31 and Its Supposed Prototypes,” VT 15 [1965]: 504-14; and W. A. Irwin, “Where Will Wisdom Be Found?” JBL 80 [1961]: 133-42).
  42. Proverbs 8:22 tn Verbs of creation often involve double accusatives; here the double accusative involves the person (i.e., wisdom) and an abstract noun in construct (IBHS 174-75 §10.2.3c).
  43. Proverbs 8:22 tn Heb “his way” (so KJV, NASB). The word “way” is an idiom (implied comparison) for the actions of God. sn The claim of wisdom in this passage is that she was foundational to all that God would do.
  44. Proverbs 8:23 tn The MT reads נִסַּכְתִּי (nissakhti), which would come from one of the homonymous roots נָסַךְ (nasakh). The LXX reads ἐθεμελίωσέν με (ethemeliōsen me, “he founded me”) suggesting נוֹסַדְתִּי (nosadti, “I was founded, established”) from יָסַד (yasad, see HALOT 417, s.v.). BHS proposes נְסַכֹּתִי (nesakkoti, “I was shaped, woven”), which uses the same consonants as the MT but is from the root סָכַך (sakhakh). BDB created an entry for Ps 2:6 and Prov 8:23 (BDB s.v. III נָסַך), citing the Akkadian verb nasaku, which it then related to the noun nasiku, “prince.” BDB’s proposed meaning is “set, install,” however, this is not the meaning of the Akkadian verb and the noun is a West Semitic word brought into Akkadian (see CAD N2 15, s.v. nasaku A and 27, s.v. nasiku). HALOT lists this verb under II נָסַך, “to be woven, shaped” in the Niphal, and also calls II נָסַך a by-form of סָכַך (sakhakh) (see HALOT 703, s.v. II נָסַך and 754, s.v. 2 סָכַך). The Concise DCH suggests the possibilities that it is related to I נָסַך (nasakh) “be poured out, i.e., emanate” or II נָסַך (nasakh) “be woven, fashioned” (See The Concise Dictionary of Classical Hebrew 275, s.v. I נָסַך and II נָסַך). The root סָכַך (sakhakh) is used in Ps 139:13 where it is parallel to קָנָה (qanah, “to create”) just as the verb here is parallel to קָנָה in 8:22. The translation attempts to capture the notion of being “created, fashioned, formed” in the two parallel verbs whether this verb is from II נָסַך or סָכַך. Note that the parallel in 8:24 is being born, another verb of making.
  45. Proverbs 8:23 tn The verb “existed” does not appear in the Hebrew text, but has been supplied in the translation in the light of the context.
  46. Proverbs 8:24 sn The summary statements just given are now developed in a lengthy treatment of wisdom as the agent of all creation. This verse singles out “watery deeps” (תְּהֹמוֹת, tehomot) in its allusion to creation because the word in Genesis signals the condition of the world at the very beginning, and because in the ancient world this was something no one could control. Chaos was not there first—wisdom was.
  47. Proverbs 8:24 tn The third parallel verb is חוֹלָלְתִּי (kholalti), “I was birthed (through labor pains).” Some (e.g., KJV, NAB, NASB, NRSV) translate it “brought forth”—not in the sense of being presented, but in the sense of being “begotten, given birth to.” Here is the strongest support for the translation of קָנָה (qanah) as “created” in v. 22. The verb is not literal; it continues the perspective of the personification.
  48. Proverbs 8:24 tn Heb “made heavy.”
  49. Proverbs 8:25 tn This is not the common verb for being born (Niphal of יָלַד, yalad). The nuance of חוֹלָלְתִּי (kholalti, the Polal of חִיל, [khil]) emphasizes being birthed through labor pains.
  50. Proverbs 8:26 tn Heb “open places.”
  51. Proverbs 8:26 tn Heb “the head of the soil of the world.” The noun ראֹשׁ (roʾsh, “head”) can refer to the topmost of something or the first of something. The noun עָפָר (ʿafar, “dirt clods”) can refer to dust (“fine dry top soil”), loose earth, or soil (HALOT 862, s.v.).tc BHS proposes דֶשֶׁא (desheʾ, “grass”) instead of ראֹשׁ which assumes both the common confusion of ד (dalet) and ר (resh), as well as the reversal of the final two letters. This would mean “the vegetation of the world’s soil.”
  52. Proverbs 8:27 sn The infinitive construct בְּחוּקוֹ (bekhuqo, “to cut; to engrave; to mark”) and the noun חוּג (khug, “horizon; circle”) form a paronomasia in the line.
  53. Proverbs 8:28 tc The MT has the Qal infinitive בַּעֲזוֹז (baʿazoz), “when [they] grew strong” (cf. NASB “when [they] became fixed”). The LXX, supported by the Syriac, Targum, and Vulgate, implies the Piel infinitive plus pronominal suffix בְּעַזְּזוֹ (beʿazzezo) “when he made [them] strong.” The proposed reading suggests metathesis (switching positions) of the last two consonants. In addition the parallel to the infinitive beginning the verse supports the pronominal suffix and the meaning of the verb (cf. NIV “when he… fixed securely”; NLT “when he established”).
  54. Proverbs 8:29 tn Heb “when he set his decree on the sea.”
  55. Proverbs 8:29 tn Heb “his mouth.”
  56. Proverbs 8:30 tn This preterite verb provides the concluding statement for the temporal clauses as well as the parallel to v. 27 “I was there.”
  57. Proverbs 8:30 tn Or “I was beside him faithfully,” or “I was beside him, the master craftsman.” The interpretation of this line depends on אָמוֹן (ʾamon) for which there are three main proposals. The majority of translations understand II אָמוֹן to be a craftsman (HALOT 62, s.v.), referring to wisdom (cf. ASV, NASB, NIV [1973], ESV, NRSV, NKJV). C. Z. Rogers has argued that “craftsman” is in apposition to “him,” describing the Lord (C. Z. Rogers, “The Meaning and Significance of the Hebrew Word אָמוֹן in Prov 8, 30” ZAW 109, [1997] 208-21). It is also understood as “nursing child” (cf. NCV, Darby, KJV), assuming it to be אָמוּן (ʾamun) a passive participle of II אָמַן (ʾaman, see HALOT 24, s.v.). The image of a child is consistent with the previous figure of being “given birth to” (vv. 24, 25). It may also derive from I אָמַן (ʾaman) meaning “faithful” (see HALOT 63, s.v. I אָמַן, and 62 s.v. I אֵמוּן or אָמוּן) (cf. NIV 2011 “constantly”). R. B. Y. Scott chooses “faithful” (“Wisdom in Creation: The ‘Amon of Proverbs 8:30, ” VT 10 [1960]: 213-23). However, “craftsman” has the most support (LXX, Vulgate, Syriac, Tg. Prov 8:30, Song 7:1; Jer 52:15; also P. W. Skehan, “Structures in Poems on Wisdom: Proverbs 8 and Sirach 24, ” CBQ 41 [1979]: 365-79).
  58. Proverbs 8:30 tn The word is a plural of intensification for “delight”; it describes wisdom as the object of delight. The LXX has the suffix; the Hebrew does not.
  59. Proverbs 8:31 tn The two words are synonymous in general and so could be taken to express a superlative idea—the “whole world” (cf. NIV, NCV). But תֵּבֵל (tevel) also means the inhabited world, and so the construct may be interpreted as a partitive genitive.
  60. Proverbs 8:31 tn Heb “and my delights” [were] with/in.”
  61. Proverbs 8:31 tn Heb “the sons of man.”
  62. Proverbs 8:32 tn Heb “sons.”
  63. Proverbs 8:33 tn Heb “discipline.”
  64. Proverbs 8:33 tn The construction uses two imperatives joined with the vav (ו); this is a volitive sequence in which result or consequence is being expressed.
  65. Proverbs 8:34 tn Heb “the man.”
  66. Proverbs 8:34 tn The form לִשְׁקֹד (lishqod) is the infinitive construct serving epexegetically in the sentence. It explains how the person will listen to wisdom.
  67. Proverbs 8:34 tn Heb “keeping” or “guarding.”
  68. Proverbs 8:34 tn Heb “at the posts of my doors” (so KJV, ASV).
  69. Proverbs 8:35 tc The Kethib reads the verb as a plural participle: “the one who finds me are finders of life.” The LXX reads a plural subject: “those who find me.” But the Hebrew Qere reads a singular perfect verb. The next verb is a preterite, which commonly follows the perfect but very rarely a participle. The perfect form of a dynamic verb should be translated as past or perfective.
  70. Proverbs 8:35 tn The preterite with vav (ו) consecutive continues the time frame of the perfect verb that came before it. sn The sage uses these verb forms in contrast with the following verse, which is present tense. The antithetic parallelism contrasts not just the subject (who finds vs. who misses) and the verb (to find vs. to harm) but also the state of the outcome. This person found life and continues in the benefit: “had found life.”
  71. Proverbs 8:36 tn Heb “the one sinning [against] me.” The verb חָטָא (khataʾ, “to sin, to err”) forms a contrast with “find” in the previous verse, and so has its basic meaning of “failing to find, miss.”
  72. Proverbs 8:36 tn The Qal active participle functions verbally here. The word stresses both social and physical harm and violence. sn Brings harm. While the previous verse used past time verbs, the sage employs the participle here as an ongoing activity. Whoever tries to live without wisdom is inviting all kinds of disaster into his life.
  73. Proverbs 8:36 tn Heb “his soul.”
  74. Proverbs 8:36 tn The basic idea of the verb שָׂנֵא (saneʾ, “to hate”) is that of rejection. Its antonym is also used in the line, “love,” which has the idea of choosing. So not choosing (i.e., hating) wisdom amounts to choosing (i.e., loving) death.