Portraits From Proverbs (11)


One of Solomon’s goals was to give his son wisdom so that he would be safe from the strange woman. In chapter two, we get a brief introduction to this dangerous woman. Chapters five through seven give a much more detailed picture of the strange woman.

Bible Reading

Pro 2:10-11 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; (11) Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee:

Pro 2:16-19 To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words; (17) Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God. (18) For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. (19) None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life.

The Strange Woman

Solomon devoted a huge portion of his writings to the strange woman. One of his goals was that his son would not get caught in her web. In his thumbnail sketch, Solomon points out four basic traits of the temptress.

First, she is strange. The Hebrew here gives the idea of ‘another’ or ‘foreign’. In this context, it is also translated ‘adulteress’. Reading the whole book of Proverbs, you get the idea that this is any woman you have no business being with. She may be a prostitute, someone else’s wife, or someone who isn’t one of God’s people, but the point is, she’s out of bounds for you.

Next, Solomon mentions one of the most powerful weapons in her arsenal – flattery. The idea is that she is a smooth talker (5:3; 6:24; 7:5,21). She tells you just what you want to hear. (We’ll get back to this in later lessons.)

She is unfaithful in life’s most important relationships – those with her husband and her God. (Most commentators believe ‘the guide of her youth’ refers to the husband she married as a young woman (Mal 2:14).) Forsaking her husband was also a sin against God.

Finally, Solomon warned his son of the serious consequences of giving in to the strange woman’s enticements. Apart from divine intervention, men don’t generally recover from this sinful lifestyle.

1Co 6:9-11 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, (10) Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (11) And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

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