By Henry Mahan
This chapter contains the instructions of wisdom or Christ; for he is the wisdom of God, and he is made unto us wisdom (1 Cor. 1:30; 1 John 5:20) and understanding.
v. 1. Wisdom cries or proclaims and preaches the everlasting gospel, which directs men in the way of peace, acceptance, and eternal happiness. Truth does not whisper as the tempter nor seek a dark corner, but boldly puts forth the voice of truth that all may hear. The truth of Christ will stand the light.
vv. 2-3. Our Lord's voice is heard in his word, from his prophets (Heb. 1:1), in his own person, and by his apostles and preachers. The gospel is to be proclaimed to all men from the high places ('He went up into a mountain'), between the paths or where the roads cross, at the gates of the temple, in the city, and in private homes (Mark 16:15-16).
v. 4. The good news of reconciliation and redemption in Christ Jesus is to men--fallen sons of Adam! Not just to noble men, wise men, or good men, but it is to all men ( I Cor. 1:26-31; Matt. 11:28). 'Ho, everyone that thirsteth come to the waters.' The voice of Christ is to all the sons of man (Rev. 5:9).
v. 5. The gospel of Christ Jesus, salvation by Christ, is the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor. 2:7-10). It is the highest wisdom to know Christ and him crucified. All men by nature are simple and are fools without understanding of spiritual truth, but in Christ the wisdom and understanding of God's will and purpose are revealed to them (1 Cor. 1:18-24).
v. 6. The things of the gospel excel all knowledge and light (1 Cor. 12:31; Heb. 1:4; Heb. 8:6), all persons, all covenants, and all laws. They are excellent in their author, their content, and their promises. He speaks right things--agreeable to the very righteousness of God, consistent with the justice of God (Rom. 3:25-26), and manifesting all the attributes of God (Psa. 85:8- 13).
vv. 7-8. His mouth speaks nothing but the truth of God (Heb. 1:1-3), for he is the truth. All the doctrines of Christ are agreeable to the scriptures and to the character of God. The gospel of Christ is called the word of truth (Eph. 1:13). The words of his mouth are agreeable to righteousness! The necessity of righteousness for eternal life, the insufficiency of man's righteousness, and the excellency of Christ's righteousness--this is the righteousness of which he speaks (Rom. 3:21-22).
v. 9. When a man's understanding is enlightened by the Spirit of God, when he is blessed of God to have ears to hear, eyes to see, and a heart to understand the gospel, the mysteries of the gospel are plain and right to him. The Bible is a sealed book and the gospel foolishness to all natural men, learned or unlearned, until God gives understanding (2 Cor. 4:3-6; 1 Cor. 2:9-14).
vv. 10-11. The wisdom of Christ and the knowledge of God in Christ are more to be desired than all that the world can offer. Nothing can be even slightly compared with the riches of God in Christ (Heb. 11:24-26).
v. 12. All the treasures of wisdom, knowledge, and judgment dwell in Christ. He knows the hearts of men, their thoughts, schemes, and devices. He knows the wiles and craftiness of Satan and makes them known to his people, so that they are not deceived (Matt. 24:24).
v. 13. The fear and reverence of the Lord make his people to hate evil, even when it is found in themselves, especially pride and arrogance (Prov. 3:7; Prov. 16:18; Prov. 6:16-17). A froward mouth speaks things contrary to the truth, to the gospel, and to the good of his people.
vv. 14-16. These words are all of Christ! He is the counsel of God and the Counselor (Isa. 9:6). He is wisdom and understanding, the fountain, author, and giver of understanding.
He has all strength, power, and authority (Matt. 28:18; John 17:2). By him all things consist, exist, and are held together.
Even kings, princes, judges, and magistrates rule by his permission and pleasure; and they are accountable to him (Rom. 13:1; Prov. 21:1).
v. 17. Christ loves those who love him, for he loved them before they loved him, and they love him because he loved them (1 John 4:10, 18). Those who seek Christ are those who see their need of Christ and know the worth and glory of Christ. They shall seek him early and find him.
vv. 18-21. True riches and the honor that comes from God are found in our Redeemer; all else fades away with the fashion of this world. 'I lead them' in the paths of righteousness or as a shepherd leads his sheep, that those who love him shall inherit substance, that is, the reality of life, glory, and riches as opposed to the vain, shadowy, temporary things of this life.
vv. 22-31. Read these verses carefully and note the eternality of the Lord Jesus Christ, his glory and majesty, his oneness with the Father, and the affection the Father has for him (John 3:35).
If one can grasp the person, power, position, and glory that Christ has with the Father, he can rest and hope with great assurance for the glory that shall be ours in him (John 17:20- 24).
vv. 32-34. Now therefore, with all this in mind--(l) Hear my voice and receive my words (John 6:68). 'To whom shall we go?' He has the words of life. (2) Blessed is the man that hears and refuses not his gospel (Rom. 4:7-8; Psalm 65:4). (3) Blessed is the man who hears me and waits at the school doors to go in first to hear Christ, the teacher, and to sit at his feet as Mary of old.
vv. 35-36. Oh, the happiness of those who find him, and who can tell the misery of those who do not!