Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.…
1. Tact is evidently the characteristic of one who "openeth her mouth with wisdom." She is not one whose garrulity proves the truth of the proverb, "In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin," for she has sufficient sense of the seriousness of life to avoid utterances which are idle and thoughtless. Her words are the dictates of that wisdom, the beginning of which is the fear of the Lord. Nor does she merely speak wise words, but, with true wisdom, she recognises that "there is a time to speak and a time to be silent," so that her reproofs and encouragements live long in grateful memories.
2. But authority is quite as important as tact, and this is characteristic of one who has a "law" in her lips. Suppleness in management is of little value unless there be strength behind it. God never meant that women should be always yielding to other people's opinions, or that they should be swayed hither and thither by every passing breeze of emotion. As much as men they need firmness, the royal power of rule, for in the home, in the sick-room, and in the class they have a veritable kingdom in which to exercise authority for God.
3. It must not be forgotten, however, that the authority here spoken of is the law of kindness. Such, in the highest sense, is the authority of Christ over His people. The noblest rule requires, not the display of force, nor the terrors of foolish threats, nor the countermining of a suspicious nature, but the law of kindness, which is obeyed because it evidently springs from love and is enforced by love. Gentlest influences are by no means the feeblest. The spring crocus can be crushed by a stone, but, unlike it, the crocus can push its way up through the stiff, hard soil, until it basks in the sunshine. The light of the sun does not make noise enough to disturb an insect's sleep, but it can waken a whole world to duty. Those who have been able to win or to retain the affection and trust of others exercise a power which angels might desire.
(A. Rowland, LL.B.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.