Proverbs 8:17 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Proverbs 8:17, NIV: "I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me."

Proverbs 8:17, ESV: "I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently find me."

Proverbs 8:17, KJV: "I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me."

Proverbs 8:17, NASB: "'I love those who love me; And those who diligently seek me will find me."

Proverbs 8:17, NLT: "'I love all who love me. Those who search will surely find me."

Proverbs 8:17, CSB: "I love those who love me, and those who search for me find me."

What does Proverbs 8:17 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Wisdom, personified as a woman calling out to be heard (Proverbs 8:1–4), states: "I love those who love me." In its ancient usage, the concept of "love" meant more than mere emotion. In fact, the primary meaning of "love" was in terms of preference in action. With that context, it's easy to see how wisdom can "love" those who "love" wisdom. When we act according to godly wisdom—that which is true (Proverbs 8:6–9)—we are more likely to see good results (Proverbs 8:10–11, 18).

Love, in connection with God, also has profound meaning. The love of Jesus is beyond compare. It is a selfless, sacrificial love. John 13:1 describes Jesus as "having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end." Certainly, the most significant display of Jesus' love for us was His death on the cross. The apostle Paul writes in Galatians 2:20, "The life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." Jesus' love for us kindles in us a reciprocal love for Him. The apostle John writes, "We love because he first loved us" (1 John 4:19).

Wisdom promises to be found by those who diligently seek her. Jeremiah 29:13 applies the same idea to those who seek God, in general, stating, "You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart." The following verse promises, "I will be found by you" (Jeremiah 29:14). Jesus, the source of all wisdom, invited the lost to come to Him. He said, "All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out" (John 6:37). God's truth is not hidden (Romans 1:18–20) from those who sincerely wish to find it (Matthew 7:7–8).