Proverbs 4:8

ESV Prize her highly, and she will exalt you; she will honor you if you embrace her.
NIV Cherish her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will honor you.
NASB Prize her, and she will exalt you; She will honor you if you embrace her.
CSB Cherish her, and she will exalt you; if you embrace her, she will honor you.
NLT If you prize wisdom, she will make you great. Embrace her, and she will honor you.
KJV Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her.

What does Proverbs 4:8 mean?

A life without wisdom can lead to shame, dishonor, regret, and misery, but setting a high value on wisdom and embracing it leads to exaltation and honor. In the context of the book of Proverbs, wisdom means an ability to live according to godly principles. Although wisdom is a gift from God, He gives it only to those who prize it, cherish His Word, and ask for it. This continues the lesson of wisdom which Solomon remembers hearing from his father, David (Proverbs 4:3).

First Samuel 2:30 quotes the Lord as saying, "Those who honor me I will honor, and those who despise me shall be lightly esteemed." Jesus serves as the best example of honoring the Lord and receiving honor from Him. Philippians 2:7–8 describes how Jesus, the Son of God, emptied Himself by taking the form of a servant, and as a man humbled Himself and obeyed the Father by dying on a cross. As a result, "God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name" (Philippians 2:9) God also honors those who follow in the steps of the Savior, putting their faith in Him and living lives of obedience to God, by granting crowns and the privilege of reigning with Christ in His future kingdom.
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