Proverbs 1:1-33 . After the title the writer defines the design and nature of the instructions of the book. He paternally invites attention to those instructions and warns his readers against the enticements of the wicked. In a beautiful personification, wisdom is then introduced in a most solemn and impressive manner, publicly inviting men to receive its teachings, warning those who reject, and encouraging those who accept, the proffered instructions.
20-33. Some interpreters regard this address as the language of the Son of God under the name of Wisdom (compare Luke 11:49 ). Others think that wisdom, as the divine attribute specially employed in acts of counsel and admonition, is here personified, and represents God. In either case the address is a most solemn and divine admonition, whose matter and spirit are eminently evangelical and impressive
Wisdom--literally, "Wisdoms," the plural used either because of the unusual sense, or as indicative of the great excellency of wisdom (compare Proverbs 9:1 ).
streets--or most public places, not secretly.
21. The publicity further indicated by terms designating places of most common resort.
22. simple ones--(Compare Proverbs 1:4 ).
scorners--( Psalms 1:1 )--who despise, as well as reject, truth.
fools--Though a different word is used from that of Proverbs 1:7 , yet it is of the same meaning.
23. reproof--implying conviction deserving it (compare John 16:8 , Margin).
pour out--abundantly impart.
my spirit--whether of wisdom personified, or of Christ, a divine agent.
25. set at naught--rejected as of no value.
would none of--literally, "were not willing or inclined to it."
26, 27. In their extreme distress He will not only refuse help, but aggravate it by derision.
27. fear--the object of it.
desolation--literally, "a tumultuous noise," denoting their utter confusion.
destruction--or calamity ( Proverbs 1:26 ) compared to a whirlwind, as to fatal rapidity.
distress--( Psalms 4:1 , 44:11 ).
anguish--a state of inextricable oppression, the deepest despair.
28. Now no prayers or most diligent seeking will avail ( Proverbs 8:17 ).
29, 30. The sinner's infatuated rejection brings his ruin.
33. dwell safely--literally, "in confidence" ( Deuteronomy 12:10 ).
be quiet--or at ease, in real prosperity.
from fear--without fear.