Friday 09 September 2016

Bible Book:

and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.” (vv. 10, 11)

Proverbs 8:1-11 Friday 9 September 2016

Psalm: Psalm 1


Today's passage was recently chosen as the text for theinaugural meeting of SoulScript, an inter-faith Scripture readinggroup, on the theme of the divine feminine. We gathered together asChristians and Muslims to reflect on how to approach what is quitean unusual text. The personification of Wisdom (a feminine word inboth Hebrew and Greek) increases in the later verses and there issome appeal in identifying Wisdom as God the Son, though thedescription of createdness does not fit with orthodoxChristologies.

We might notice that, to some of our ears, Wisdom is less thanpolite - "simple ones" (v. 5). Of course, if one is beingpassionate and expressive, especially in a very direct culture,then speaking well might not be a concern. There is a clear messagethat all that is required to become wise is to listen, if only thatwe true. This is the superior tone used in an argument where no oneelse is qualified to offer a different view, an outlook which stillexists in churches and religious thinking (as well as on Twitterand other social media). In response we might agree and say thatWisdom is certainly in listening, less so in speaking, as manyothers have said. Yet Wisdom here is offered as the voice of Godand either God has difficult things to say, or difficult things areplaced in the mouth of God. Perhaps, if we are truly wise, we willoffer a qualified response and accept parts of what Wisdom says,testing its concepts and morality as best we can, as these areman's (or woman's) words seeking to do God's work.

To Ponder

  • What opportunities are open to you to share in readingScripture with people of other traditions?
  • What is your take on the blending of God's message and ahuman's words?

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