The Facts (Chapter number: Verse)
1:8 - "Hear my child, your father's instruction, and do not reject your mother's teaching."
1:20-33 - Wisdom cries out in the street. She cries at the busiest corner and at the entrance to the city gate she speaks. "How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple? How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing and fools hate knowledge? Give heed to my reproof; I will pour out my thoughts to you; I will make my words known to you. Because I have called and you refused, have stretched out my hand and no one heeded, and because you have ignored all my counsel and would have none of my reproof. I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when panic strikes you, when panic strikes you [sic] in a storm, and your calamity comes like a whirlwind., when distress and anguish come upon you. Then they will call upon me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently, but will not find me. Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the Lord, would have none of my counsel, and despise all my reproof, therefore they shall eat the fruit of their way and be sated with their own devices. For waywardness kills the simple, and the complacency of fools destroys them; but those who listen to me will be secure and will live at ease, without dread of disaster."
2:16-19 - "You will be saved from the loose woman, from the adulteress with her smooth words, who forsakes the partner of her youth and forgets her sacred covenant; for her way leads down to death, and her paths to the shades; those who go to her never come back, nor do they regain the paths of life."
Wait wait wait. So now women are wise and teachers? And men are supposed to listen to them?
Oh wait, no. I see. REAL women are loose and adulteresses and tricksters who are to be distrusted because they are likely to lead men astray. It's only abstract manifestations that are called "female" that are to be trusted and listened to. Good, 'cause I was about to think that the Bible was trying to suddenly tell me that women were actually wise and shit after everything it's had to say on the subject.
I was almost impressed for a second there. I was like "Hey, cool, wisdom is a woman. That's pretty cool." Of course that only went so far since apparently the Bible's definition of "wisdom" here is simply a fear of God. Not common sense or quick whit or even a high SAT score. Proverbs 1:7 states, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, fools despise wisdom and instruction." Which, really, I have a lot to say about right there. A fear of God basically means not questioning God or any of his rules or teachings. I have always considered a lack of curiosity or an inability to question a sign of ignorance and LACK of knowledge. But ignorance has always been highly praised in religion. That is why faith is such a big component because in order to have faith you must believe something without question and without actual proof. So this to me is the exact opposite of wisdom and knowledge. I'll be a questioning fool any day if the only other option is to be an unquestioning servant for a cruel and malevolent God.
So maybe in the end it's not so strange that wisdom is a woman since wisdom is apparently complete subservience and fear of the greatest Man in all existence: God. Wisdom may be above mortal men but she is still a woman and thus must still be subject to a man's will.
But since the Bible had some kind words to say about our dear lady Wisdom here, it feels obligated to remind us yet again in whose hands the real downfall of man lies.
So say it with me, my fellow Biblical adventurers! Who should we always have a hefty amount of distrust for?!
Thaaaaaaat's right, kids!
Friday: More Proverbs