Proverbs 8:3 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Proverbs 8:3, NIV: "beside the gate leading into the city, at the entrance, she cries aloud:"

Proverbs 8:3, ESV: "beside the gates in front of the town, at the entrance of the portals she cries aloud:"

Proverbs 8:3, KJV: "She crieth at the gates, at the entry of the city, at the coming in at the doors."

Proverbs 8:3, NASB: "Beside the gates, at the opening to the city, At the entrance of the doors, she cries out:"

Proverbs 8:3, NLT: "By the gates at the entrance to the town, on the road leading in, she cries aloud,"

Proverbs 8:3, CSB: "Beside the gates leading into the city, at the main entrance, she cries out:"

What does Proverbs 8:3 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

This continues a poetic description of wisdom as a woman, making her presence obvious to mankind. According to the last two verses (Proverbs 8:1–2), her presence is not hidden, and she calls out (Proverbs 8:4) from conspicuous places. Here, she speaks beside the gates at the town's entrance. This is where business and court cases were decided. Wisdom was certainly needed there as the town's elders convened to conduct business and settle legal matters.

Solomon knew by personal experience that wisdom is needed to settle legal matters. He had asked the Lord for the wisdom to govern the Lord's people (1 Kings 3:7–9), and the Lord granted his request. After deciding a case between two women over the custody of a child, "all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice" (1 Kings 3:28). The apostles carried the gospel to cities, where they urged people to trust in Christ. Those who believed experienced a transformation of mind as well as heart. Their darkened minds were enlightened by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:18).