The Value Of Wisdom
In this section Lady Wisdom emerges once again. This poem interrupts the series of instructions in order to promote the value of wisdom, not only to man, but even to God.
Wisdom is more valuable than money because it bestows the gift of true happiness in addition to riches and honor. Just as God used wisdom to create the universe, he provides wisdom that preserves us from sin and fear.
Happy (blessed, fortunate, enviable) is the man who finds skillful and godly Wisdom, and the man who gets understanding [drawing it forth from God’s Word and life’s experiences],
Proverbs 3:13 (AMP)
The poem begins with a beatitude, How blessed is the man, to motivate the young to pursue wisdom. Those who attain wisdom and understanding are truly blessed. If a young person wishes to be similarly happy, he should emulate the example of the wise. The rest of the poem explains why: wisdom is incredibly valuable.
For the gaining of it is better than the gaining of silver, and the profit of it better than fine gold. Skillful and godly Wisdom is more precious than rubies; and nothing you can wish for is to be compared to her.
Proverbs 3:14-15 (AMP)
Lady Wisdom’s value is evident when comparing her to items typically associated with great wealth: silver, fine gold, and jewels. She is incomparably more precious than these or anything else of value in the world that one might typically desire. Like a merchant, the writer evaluates the treasures available to him.
What acquisition will produce the greatest gain or profit?
Though gold and silver are undeniable measures of wealth, they can provide only the things that money can buy, and wisdom provides what money cannot buy.
Job 28:12-22 explains why wisdom is more valuable than wealth. Unlike wealth, which mankind can attain on their own through great effort, wisdom is unattainable through human effort alone. God alone possesses it, and He alone can grant it to those who fear Him.
The verses that follow outline some of those benefits. Verse 15 may refer to rubies or coral, certainly something reddish (Lam. 4:7), extremely valuable, rare, and beautiful. Wisdom, however, surpasses all of these treasures.
Father, your wisdom is precious to me. What a joy it is to be filled with the knowledge of God. The harvest of Your wisdom is better than any harvest of money or material things. To know You and to be known by You is my most coveted prize. Thank you for Your wisdom. I pray in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ! Amen.
DECLARATION OF FAITH
I am a happy and prosperous man/woman, full of wisdom and understanding.
I know the profits and returns of knowledge. I pursue her with a whole heart. It is a great joy to me when I find her. She is more precious to me than any treasure on the face of the earth.
I declare this declaration of faith in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ! Amen!
Holman Old Testament Commentary
The Moody Bible Commentary