I wisdom dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge of witty inventions. (13) The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate. (14) Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom: I am understanding; I have strength. (15) By me kings reign, and princes decree justice. (16) By me princes rule, and nobles, even all the judges of the earth.
Wisdom personified continues to speak in these verses, and she begins to talk about her role among leaders in society. This is evident in verses 15 and 16 where she mentions kings, princes nobles, and judges. Wisdom’s subject matter changes in verse 12 towards this role starting in verse 12. Wisdom says she lives with prudence. We are usually closely related with those we live with and this is the idea here. She also says she that she “finds out knowledge of witty inventions”. The word here for “witty inventions” is the word transliterated “mezimmah” which occurs 22 times in the Old Testament. The word relates to plans, and more often than not speaks of evil plans. With the context of the word being used just before verse 13 which speaks of hating evil, pride, arrogance, the evil way and the froward mouth, it would make sense that she is saying that wisdom is not naive. When wisdom is found in rulers they are people who are prudent, and who use their wisdom to put a stop to those who do evil and pervert justice. They use wisdom combined with their position of power to promote righteousness in the land.
In verse 14 wisdom claims she owns counsel and “sound wisdom”. The idea of the word translated as “sound wisdom” seems to speak to the kind of wisdom that is practical and not just theoretical. It is a wisdom that can be put into practice. Notice the connection that Wisdom says here to execution of the duties of a leader. Words like “strength”, “reign”, “decree”, and “rule” in connection with kings, princes, nobles, and judges indicate that there is a power to wisdom. Wisdom really is powerful in that it helps the leader to lead well. It encourages them to use their influence and position to thwart the evil doer and execute righteousness.
If wisdom is powerful enough for kings to righteously rule over nations, it is powerful enough for you to lead your home, run your business, influence your neighborhood, and promote the fear of the Lord among those you influence. Wisdom is a powerful thing, and as we will see in the upcoming verses it is an obtainable thing. The book of James tells us something incredible about obtaining wisdom:
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.James 1:5
What an incredible thing to be promised access to something this powerful. The obvious questions are these- do you ask for wisdom? Do you see out wisdom? Does wisdom inform how you live your life?