EBC Abridged: “Chapter 9 forms the conclusion of the lengthy nine-chapter introduction to the book. Both wisdom and folly will make their final appeals; and both appeal to the simpletons, those who need to live by wisdom but who are most easily influenced by folly. Wisdom offers life with no mention of pleasure; folly offers pleasure with no mention of death.”
Proverbs 9:1 ¶ Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars:
Proverbs 9:2 She hath killed her beasts; she hath mingled her wine; she hath also furnished her table.
This chapter continues with presenting wisdom personified. She is pictured in these verses as preparing a great feast to serve those who would seek to be nourished at her table. Verse 1 seems to be emphasizing that she built her house with room enough to accommodate all who would seek fellowship there.
Clarke: “Perhaps the mixed wine here may mean wine of the strongest and best quality, that which was good to cheer and refresh the heart of man. If we consider the mixed wine as meaning this strong wine, then the import of the metaphor will be, a thorough investigation of the works of God will invigorate the soul, strengthen all the mental powers, enlarge their capacity, and enable the mind to take the most exalted views of the wonders of God's skill manifested in the operations of his hand.”
Ironsides: “The Word of God as a whole, and Proverbs in particular, is Wisdom’s temple. Abundant provision has been made for the instruction and blessing of those who enter. All that man requires for his guidance through the mazes of his life on earth can be found here. A well-furnished table is spread before all who desire spiritual sustenance and cheer. Millions have feasted there, yet the supply is still inexhaustible.”
Proverbs 9:3 She hath sent forth her maidens: she crieth upon the highest places of the city,
Proverbs 9:4 Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,
Proverbs 9:5 Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled.
Proverbs 9:6 Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.
Wisdom doesn’t send out invitations for a private party, she sends her maid servants throughout the city inviting all those that are simple and lack understanding to come feast at her table. They urge them to forsake all that allures and deceives them to live with discernment that will bring blessing.
Proverbs 9:7 He that reproveth a scorner getteth to himself shame: and he that rebuketh a wicked man getteth himself a blot.
Proverbs 9:8 Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee.
Proverbs 9:9 Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.
I liked the NIV for verse 7: “Whoever corrects a mocker invites insult; whoever rebukes a wicked man incurs abuse.”
A scorner is one who mocks and verbally abuses others; such a person is not willing to receive correction. A wise man, however, will receive rebuke, recognizing that it is for his good; and he will appreciate it and consider you his friend for caring enough to correct him. When you instruct a wise and just man, he will receive it and become wiser as he learns more.
Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.
Proverbs 9:11 For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased.
The truth stated in the first part of verse 10 is foundational to understanding the book of Proverbs. One can never be wise who does not fear and reverence the LORD. One who fears the LORD will honor His word and seek to obey what He says. Essentially, God’s word is the foundation for true wisdom as opposed to worldly wisdom. God’s word provides the foundational knowledge necessary for intelligent discernment and understanding.
Wisdom declares that those who follow her will lead longer lives. Again, this is a principle based on the safeguards that accompany wise choices in life. One cannot account for the cumulative effects of sin that have resulted in disease and birth defects or for the evil actions of others against the innocent.
Proverbs 9:12 If thou be wise, thou shalt be wise for thyself: but if thou scornest, thou alone shalt bear it.
I liked the NLT for this verse: “If you become wise, you will be the one to benefit. If you scorn wisdom, you will be the one to suffer.”
Proverbs 9:13 ¶ A foolish woman is clamorous: she is simple, and knoweth nothing.
Proverbs 9:14 For she sitteth at the door of her house, on a seat in the high places of the city,
Proverbs 9:15 To call passengers who go right on their ways:
Proverbs 9:16 Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: and as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,
Proverbs 9:17 Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.
Proverbs 9:18 But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell.
The foolish woman (in contrast to the wise woman) is bold and loud, causing great commotion; she’s always calling attention to herself. She is easily seduced or deceived and is ignorant. She calls out in public places tempting others to join her and fellowship with her. Those who are like her, lacking wisdom, answer her call. Those who consort with her desire to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season, not realizing that their choice leads to death and destruction.
EBC Abridged: Her house “is a throat to hell. Many ‘eat’ on earth what they ‘digest’ in hell.”
It is the pleasure of sin, the lust of the flesh, that lures the foolish. Scripture acknowledges that sin brings pleasure—but only for a season. The long term consequences are eternal condemnation.
Hebrews 11:24–25 “By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season….”
Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Matthew 7:13–14 “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”