In this post I continue discussing the books of the Apocrypha, accepted as part of Scripture by Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches. These are important books, historically and culturally – but hardly known among Protestant readers. Here are three more! Descriptions are taken from my introduction to the Bible.
The Wisdom of Solomon
The Wisdom of Solomon is a book of positive wisdom (recall Proverbs), which claims to be written by the great king of the United Monarchy. In fact it was written many centuries later, by a Jew in the Diaspora, possibly in the first century b.c.e. or the first century c.e.
The book celebrates Wisdom as the greatest gift to humans and insists that it involves proper fear and adoration of God, which will lead to eternal reward. Those who lead ungodly lives, on the other hand “will be punished as their reasoning deserves” (5:10). The exaltation of wisdom recalls Proverbs 8, where Wisdom appears as a female consort with God at the beginning of all things. Here too Wisdom is said to be “a breath of the power of God and a pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty . . . for she is a reflection of eternal light, a spotless mirror of the working of God” (7:25–26).
We have seen that…
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