“Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!” To him who lacks sense she says, “Come, eat of my bread and drink of my wine.” (Proverbs 9:4) “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!” To him who lacks sense she says, “Stolen water is sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.” (Proverbs 9:16)
Ever been in a position where you can’t decide what to buy because two products both look so good? And both salespeople are so convincing? This is what life is like according to Proverbs 9. Every day two people are trying to sell us something. They never stop advertising. Both of these ‘saleswomen’ know the truth about us. We really are simple and we do lack sense. This is the weak-point in us that these two salespeople target. And both make huge promises. The one saleswoman is Folly. She is so seductive and enticing. She incessantly calls to passers-by selling her wares. She has a strong sales pitch that is almost irresistible. Stolen water is sweet! Bread eaten in secret is pleasant! Basically, she says the sweetest and most pleasant way to live is to grab it and get away with it. She is such a successful saleswoman that almost everyone does business with her. For most people, life is simply what you can get away with. Many experience the pleasantness and sweetness of illicit gratification. But there’s always the fine print. What you may not know, and it sure doesn’t look like it, is that the dead gather around her. Her guests are dead. Illicit God-forbidden gratification leads to death. There is another saleswoman who also calls out to everyone. Her name is Wisdom. She says, rather than grabbing stuff, we must let her give us her bread to eat and her wine to drink. ‘Don’t take’ she says. ‘Let me give it to you.’ She says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight. She says that her paths lead to life. Now, who should we believe? Who should we choose? Who’s promises should we trust? Jesus Christ models the answer. His entire life was characterised by a refusal to take anything for Himself. He waited for His Father and did His will always. He looked to God for vindication and reward. Whereas Adam and Eve reached out and grabbed for themselves what looked pleasant and good for food, Jesus, also in the garden, would not take anything that the Father did not give Him. Like a beautiful woman, all day today, the world is going to sell you things that look sweet and pleasant. PRAY that God will help you see another woman. Her name is Wisdom. She says, trust in God with all your heart. Look to Him for your reward. Don’t seek anything He has not given You. Be prepared and happy to go without, rather than take for yourself. This is wisdom and this leads to life.