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“It is interesting to note that the first section of Proverbs, which may be said to lay the foundation for all that follows, often returns to a particular theme. The way of wisdom is repeatedly contrasted with the seductions of a wayward and adulterous woman. It is no coincidence that adultery is often used in Scripture to illustrate spiritual unfaithfulness, and particularly idolatry and false worship.

For Solomon, this had particular force, for we are told in 1 kings 11:1-4: ‘King Solomon loved many foreign women, as well as the daughter of Pharoah: women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites- from the nations of whom the LORD had said to the children of Israel, ‘You shall not intermarry with them, nor they with you. Surely they will turn away your hearts after their gods.’ Solomon clung to these in love. After he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines; and his wives turned away his heart. For it was so, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned his heart after other gods; and his heart was not loyal to the LORD his God, as was his heart of his father David.’

While recognizing that the primary scope of these warnings in Proverbs is to exhort us against sexual sin, Matthew Henry notes: ‘ Some apply this figuratively, and by the adulterous woman here understand idolatry, or false doctrine, which tends to debauch men’s minds and manners, to which it may be as fitly as anything be applied.’ Further supporting this application is the fact that Christ is presented in Proverbs as Wisdom personified, who calls His Bride to faithfulness. The Church is the Bride of Christ, and her fidelity to her Husband is nowhere more important than in her intimate communion with Him in worship.” (Comin, 196-197)

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