Jesus the Proverb
In Matthew 12, Jesus is confronted by the scribes and Pharisees (again!) as they ask Him to prove Himself with a fresh miracle. No matter that, just before this exchange, He'd only just finished healing a blind man who couldn't speak. But what they get instead is a direct confrontation with Jesus where He points, for the first time in Matthew's Gospel, to His eventual Resurrection. He then tucks in two historical references - "the men of Ninevah" and "the Queen of the South" - to highlight their present unbelief.
This second one is really interesting: "The Queen of the South will stand up in the judgment with this generation and will condemn it. For she came from the ends of the earth to listen to the wisdom of Solomon, and you have more than the wisdom of Solomon with you now..."
With that statement, Jesus unlocks so much potential for revisiting the personified "wisdom" found in Solomon's Proverbs. Consider a passage like this one (from Proverbs 4), reimagined through the lens of a Jesus who trumps even Wisdom herself:
"Lay hold of the Word with all your heart; keep His commands and you will live.
Get Jesus, get belief; do not forget the Word or swerve from Him.
Do not forsake Jesus, and He will protect you; love Him, and He will watch over you.
Jesus is supreme; therefore get Jesus. Though it cost all you have, get belief.
Esteem Him, and He will exalt you; embrace Him, and He will honor you.
He will set a garland of grace on your head and present you with a crown of splendor.
"Listen, my son, accept what I say, and the years of your life will be eternal.
I will guide you in the way of Jesus and lead you along straight paths.
When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble.
Hold on to belief, do not let it go; guard it well, for it is your life..."
"The path of those-made-righteous is like the first gleam of dawn,
shining ever brighter till the full light of day..."
"My son, pay attention to what I say; listen closely to the Word.
Do not let Him out of your sight, keep Him within your heart;
for He is life to those who find Him and health to a man's whole body.
Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of Life Himself..."
"Let your eyes look straight ahead, fix your gaze directly before you.
Make level paths for your feet and take only the Way that is firm.
Do not swerve to the right or the left..."
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