Proverb for the Day 9:1-6 — Just Perfect!

1 Wisdom has built her house; she has set up its seven pillars. 2 She has prepared her meat and mixed her wine; she has also set her table. 3 She has sent out her servants, and she calls from the highest point of the city, 4 “Let all who are simple come to my house!” To those who have no sense she says, 5 “Come, eat my food and drink the wine I have mixed. 6 Leave your simple ways and you will live; walk in the way of insight.”

Chapter 9 is the final chapter of the first section of Proverbs. A series of comparisons and contrasts between wisdom and folly, both are personified as ladies.

Lady Wisdom (:1-6), mentioned first, is discussed as having a house (:1). From archaeology we know this building.

It was a standardized Israelite house plan known from before Solomon’s time that lasted throughout the Holy Land for the next 300 years. Like Lady Wisdom’s house, they were constructed with internal pillars, but generally in symmetrical rows.

The number seven was almost assuredly symbolic, suggesting completion or perfection. In Lady Wisdom’s “perfect” house, she would presumably prepare a “perfect” banquet meal (:2).

Then Lady Wisdom sends out her maidens to invite the “perfect” guests (:3) for her perfect banquet at her perfect house. The invitation is presented from the highest point of the city (:3), suggesting it’s announced for all to hear.

A “perfect” invitation (:4-6) to a “perfect” group of guests. Lady Wisdom invites “those who are simple and lack judgment” (:4) – or, at least, the ones willing to admit that’s who they are!

The offer suggests that, by coming to her house and partaking of what she has, we won’t leave the same person we were when we arrived (:5-6). Just perfect!