Written by Tracy and Melinda Williamson
Proverbs, chapter 9 is the last chapter of instructions that Solomon gave to his son, Rehoboam. Rehoboam needed to decide between wise or evil behavior. This decision would guide his entire life.
This chapter is written in two segments, the woman called Wisdom and the woman called Folly. In verses 1 – 12, Soloman talks about Wisdom. This woman made a great meal for her guests. Her guests would not remain hungry. Wisdom prepared everything they needed. Wisdom herself has invited the guests. Everyone hears her message, but everyone must choose whether to learn to become. This is significant because she did not only invite her friends, she invited everyone. She invited people she did not like, people who were her enemies, the poor and the sick. The people who are Wisdom’s guests are simple people. They are people who do not know about good and evil behavior. They are people who do many wrong things. These people have not yet learned to become wise. She has invited all of us! Everyone is invited, because those who refuse her invitation will be replaced by those who accept. Wisdom talks about two things to achieve wisdom. Verse 6 says: Leave your simple ways and live. The second: Trust in God (live wisely). In verse 8, scripture talks about a wise man loves the person who corrects him. They will learn from the person who sees his errors. If we love that person, we are very wise. It is really hard for us to have others point out sin in our lives, but we must learn to accept it, if we want to continue to gain wisdom in our lives. A wise person is not always intelligent or clever, but they have learned to respect God. We must make God first in our lives, over every other person or thing. If we respect God, then we will want to learn from God. Wisdom will benefit us our whole life, but if we refuse to be wise, we will suffer.
The second woman, referred to in verses 13 – 18, is called Folly. This woman offers us meal as well, shouting out an invitation to all. You might confuse this woman with Wisdom, but you would be making a terrible mistake. People who accept her invitation are foolish. Everyone will be offered both invitations, but we must accept only one. Folly calls those who have already decided to be foolish and those who have not yet decided. She tries to persuade them with temptation. In verse 17, it says that “Stolen water is refreshing”. This refers to the meal that she offers. It is a meal that does not belong to her. She has stolen the water and must drink and eat in secret. This water refers to love and sex. This is what the ”Foolish Woman” is offering. This refers to stolen sex; sex that is not between an husband and a wife. This is why the meal has to be kept secret. In this, Solomon is referring to all evil things, not just sex!
Evil actions might feel wonderful or good, but these are only feelings, they are not reality. The reality is that evil behavior will destroy us. The reality is that God hates all evil things. We must make our choice. We can be wise or we can be foolish. Make the right decision! God wants us all to learn to be wise.