Proverbs 1:2 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Proverbs 1:2, NIV: "for gaining wisdom and instruction; for understanding words of insight;"

Proverbs 1:2, ESV: "To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight,"

Proverbs 1:2, KJV: "To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;"

Proverbs 1:2, NASB: "To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding,"

Proverbs 1:2, NLT: "Their purpose is to teach people wisdom and discipline, to help them understand the insights of the wise."

Proverbs 1:2, CSB: "For learning wisdom and discipline; for understanding insightful sayings;"

What does Proverbs 1:2 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The four steps of awareness, in Proverbs, are learning, knowledge, wisdom, and understanding. Learning is acquiring raw information. Knowledge is information that has been remembered for future use. Wisdom is the capacity to make right choices, based in knowledge and information. Understanding is a deeper form of wisdom, which can be passed along to others.

This verse begins the purpose statements of the book of Proverbs. The first purpose is to learn. However, it is more than just picking up random facts; it is the recognition of wise teaching. The "to" phrases used in verse 2 are "to know" and "to understand." Solomon is not jumping ahead in the learning-knowledge-wisdom-understanding process. He is simply instructing the reader that this book is written to help them recognize and discern wise instruction. In essence, the book of Proverbs is a tool. The principles it gives can be used to measure other instructions.