Poetry & the Arts
Here's something different. Different to me, anyway. I have read the Old Testament apocrypha before (and I can't figure out why we got stuck with the version of Esther that doesn't include God, instead of the lovely Greek Esther) but I don't recall this. It was one of the possibilities you could select on what is known as the Lectionary Page.
It's very reminiscent of parts of Proverbs, in which wisdom and folly are both personified as women. In fact, in Proverbs 8, wisdom is personified as a child growing up beside God and watching (perhaps helping) him create the universe. Some have seen in those verses a "younger" (odd term to use for an eternally pre-existing Being) God the Son, "growing up" beside God. However, it clearly uses feminine pronouns (not that any human pronouns are more or less correct to use for God), and in context, is seen to be the personified Lady Wisdom. I was tempted to use the title "Mother Wisdom," as a contrast with the colloquial "Mother Nature," but decided that was just inviting controversy.
Don't worry, I'm not saying the apocrypha should be equal to the Bible; I believe God oversaw what got put into the canon and what did not. I do believe, however, that wisdom, that invaluable commodity, can be found in quite a few unlikely places--the apocrypha, unexpected books by obscure authors, a song on the radio, the clouds at sunset, the faces of your co-workers. . . even in the cybersphere of Adventist Today!
Happy Sabbath to all!
Wisdom of Solomon 7:26-8:1
For wisdom is a reflection of eternal light,
a spotless mirror of the working of God,
and an image of his goodness.
Although she is but one, she can do all things,
and while remaining in herself, she renews all things;
in every generation she passes into holy souls
and makes them friends of God, and prophets;
for God loves nothing so much as the person who lives with wisdom.
She is more beautiful than the sun,
and excels every constellation of the stars.
Compared with the light she is found to be superior,
for it is succeeded by the night,
but against wisdom evil does not prevail.
She reaches mightily from one end of the earth to the other,
and she orders all things well.
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