Proverbs 8
Contemporary English Version

In Praise of Wisdom

1 With great understanding,

Wisdom+ is calling out

2as she stands at the crossroads

and on every hill.

3She stands by the city gate

where everyone enters the city,

and she shouts:

4“I am calling out

to each one of you!

5Good sense and sound judgment

can be yours.

6Listen, because what I say

is worthwhile and right.

7I always speak the truth

and refuse to tell a lie.

8Every word I speak is honest,

not one is misleading

or deceptive.

9“If you have understanding,

you will see that my words

are just what you need.

10Let instruction and knowledge

mean more to you than silver

or the finest gold.

11 Wisdom is worth much more

than precious jewels

or anything else you desire.”

Wisdom Speaks

12I am Wisdom+ —Common Sense

is my closest friend;

I possess knowledge

and sound judgment.

13If you respect the Lord,

you will hate evil.

I hate pride and conceit

and deceitful lies.

14I am strong, and I offer

sensible advice

and sound judgment.

15By my power kings govern,

and rulers make laws

that are fair.

16Every honest leader rules

with help from me.

17I love everyone who loves me,

and I will be found by all

who honestly search.

18I can make you rich and famous,

important and successful.

19What you receive from me

is more valuable

than even the finest gold

or the purest silver.

20I always do what is right,

21and I give great riches

to everyone who loves me.

22 From the beginning,

I was with the Lord.+

I was there before he began

23to create the earth.

At the very first,

the Lord gave life to+ me.

24When I was born,

there were no oceans

or springs of water.

25My birth was before

mountains were formed

or hills were put in place.

26It happened long before God

had made the earth

or any of its fields

or even the dust.

27 I was there when the Lord

put the heavens in place

and stretched the sky

over the surface of the sea.

28I was with him when he placed

the clouds in the sky

and created the springs

that fill the ocean.

29I was there when he set

boundaries for the sea

to make it obey him,

and when he laid foundations

to support the earth.

30I was right beside the Lord,

helping him plan and build.+

I made him happy each day,

and I was happy at his side.

31I was pleased with his world

and pleased with its people.

32 Pay attention, my children!

Follow my advice,

and you will be happy.

33Listen carefully

to my instructions,

and you will be wise.

34Come to my home each day

and listen to me.

You will find happiness.

35By finding me, you find life,

and the Lord will be pleased

with you.

36But if you don't find me,

you hurt only yourself,

and if you hate me,

you are in love with death.


8.1 Wisdom: See the note at 1.20.
8.12 Wisdom: See the note at 1.20.
8.22 From the beginning … with the Lord: Or “In the very beginning, the Lord created me.”
8.23 gave life to: Or “formed.”
8.30 helping … build: Or “like his own child.”

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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