What Proverbs Has to Say about Women


November 28, 2016
Speaker:
Passage: Proverbs

One of King Solomon’s favorite topics in the book of Proverbs is women, and that makes sense, because this man who wrote most of the book had 700 wives and 300 concubines. But although he is often called the wisest man who ever lived, he had a problem with the women in his life. Scripture says, “King Solomon…loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh’s daughter….They were from nations about which the Lord had told the Israelites, ‘You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods.’ Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love….As Solomon grew old…his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord his God” (1 Kings 11:1-4, excerpted).

When I jotted down all the verses in Proverbs that talk about wives, I found they fit under three topics. The first is the wayward wife. He says she has a smooth tongue (6:24) and seductive words (7:5), and she is like decay in her husband’s bones (12:4). Solomon calls her” a narrow well,” indicating that in the long run, a relationship with her does not satisfy.

The next type of wife Solomon deals with is the quarrelsome or ill-tempered wife. Now, Solomon lived in a fantastic palace, but in his opinion it was better to live on a corner of the roof or in a desert than to share a house with a nagging wife (25:24, 21:9). She is “like a constant dripping on a rainy day,” he says (27:15).

But now we get to the good stuff: the prudent or noble wife. Solomon says, “Houses and wealth are inherited from parents, but a prudent wife is from the Lord” (19:13-14). She is “her husband’s crown” (12:4), “worth far more than rubies” (31:10). When Solomon said it so well, I don’t think I need to say any more. Just read it in the book of Proverbs.

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