The distinction between the Old Testament and the New Testament raises the question of whether the separation of the first century Christian groups and the nascent first century CE Rabbinic Jewish groups was just a continuation of an earlier dispute. Did the fall of the Temple in 70 CE put the final nail in the coffin? Was this the fracture of Judaism, as the two groups went in different ways? Already in the second century BCE, there were differences between the Judean Maccabeus group and the Greek Hellenistic Jews. None of the inspired Jewish biblical writers who called themselves followers of Jesus Christ in the first century wrote in Hebrew, but all wrote in Greek. Was Christianity, or the forming of the Christian communities, the final stage of this dispute within Judaism about the role of Greek?
Lady wisdom speaks (Prov 8:1-8:11)
“Does not wisdom call?
Does not understanding raise her voice?
On the heights,
Beside the way,
At the crossroads,
She takes her stand.
Beside the gates
In front of the town,
At the entrance of the portals,
She cries out.
My cry is to all that live.
O simple ones!
You who lack it!
I will speak noble things,
From my lips
Will come what is right.
My mouth will utter truth.
Wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
All the words of my mouth are righteous.
There is nothing twisted or crooked in them.
They are all straight to one who understands.
They are right to those who find knowledge.
Take my instruction instead of silver.
Take my knowledge rather than choice gold.
Wisdom is better than jewels.
All that you may desire cannot compare with her.’”
Lady wisdom is calling. Unlike the prostitute or adulterous woman, you should listen to her. Lady wisdom is all over the place. She raises her voice at the heights, at the crossroads, beside the town gates, and at the town entrance. There is no reason to miss her. Her cry is to all who live, not a particular person. The simpletons were to learn prudence and intelligence. She was going to speak noble things that were right and true. There would be no wickedness, but only righteousness. Nothing is crooked, since everything is straight. You should value her instructions and knowledge more than silver, gold, or jewels. Nothing can compare with lady wisdom.
Wisdom cries out in public (Prov 1:20-1:23)
“Wisdom cries aloud in the street.
In the squares,
She raises her voice.
At the busiest corner,
She cries out.
At the entrance of the city gates
‘O simple ones!
Will you love being simple?
Will scoffers delight in their scoffing?
Will fools hate knowledge?
Give heed to my reproof!
I will pour out my thoughts to you.
I will make my words known to you.’”
Wisdom is personified as a female here. She cries out in the streets and raises her voice in the city squares like a prophetess. She cries out and speaks at the busy corners and at the gate to the entrance to a city or town. She calls out people for being simple. She wanted to know why they were deriding her. How long would these fools hate knowledge? There is a lot of mention of scoffers in these proverbs. A scoffer is someone who mocks others, a kind of a cynic. Why would they not accept a criticism? Nevertheless wisdom was going to pour out her thoughts and make her words known to them.