Bridges on Proverbs 9:1-6
 
Charles Bridges on Proverbs 9:1-6
 
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1.   ¶ Wisdom† hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars: 2.  She hath killed her beasts;† she hath mingled her wine; she hath also furnished her table. {her beasts: Heb. her killing} 3.  She hath sent forth her maidens: she crieth upon the highest places of the city, 4.  Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him, 5.  Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled. 6.  Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.
 
WE have delighted to contemplate the Divine Savior in his glorious majesty, and specially in his wondrous love to the sons of men. (Chapter 8:22-31.) Here his love is poured out before us. The parable of the marriage-feast clearly identifies the speaker. Then the King made the feast, and sent his servants to invite the guests. (Matthew 22:1-4, also Luke 14:16, 17.) Here Wisdom is a Queen, according to Eastern custom, attended by her maidens (Exodus 2:5. Esther 4:4), and she sends them forth to bid to the feast. She hath builded her house — “the church of the living God” — firm upon the pillars of eternal truth. (1 Timothy 3:15. Ephesians 2:20-22. Hebrews 3:3, 4. Matthew 16:18.) The great sacrifice supplies her feast. (1 Corinthians 5:7. Psalm 36:8. Isaiah 25:6.) She hath killed her beasts, mingled her wine with the choicest spices,† and plentifully furnished her table. And now she cries to the simple — ignorant of his danger (Chapter 22:3), and easily deceived (Chapter 14:15) — to him that wanteth understanding (Hosea 7:11) — who has no apprehension of his need, or desire for the blessing — Let him turn in hither. Here is a feast, not to see, but to enjoy. Come, eat of the bread of life; drink of the wine of gospel grace and joy.† Is there not besides a special invitation for her children — a table richly furnished for their refreshment; where they eat of the bread, and drink of the wine, such as “the world know not of”? (Matthew 26:26-28.)
But are not all comers welcome to the Gospel feast? The Master’s heart flows along with every offer of his grace. His servants are ministers of reconciliation. (2 Corinthians 5:18-20.) Their message is to tell of the bounty of Messiah’s house, and to bid sinners welcome to Him. Here, sinner, is thy warrant — not thy worthiness, but thy need, and the invitation of thy Lord. All the blessings of his Gospel are set before thee — love without beginning, end, or change. Honour the freeness of his mercy. Let him have the full glory of his own grace, who invites thee to a feast, when he might have frowned thee to hell.† Let his heavenly hope be enthroned in the soul, displacing every subordinate object from its hold on thine affections, eclipsing the glories of this present world, absorbing thy whole mind, consecrating thy whole heart.
Here only are the ways of peace. The very severities of the Gospel prepare the way for its consolations. But never can these blessings be valued, till the path of the foolish be forsaken. Thou must forsake either them or Christ. (James 4:4.) To abide with them, is to “remain in the congregation of the dead.” (Chapter 21:16.) To forsake them, is the way of life and understanding. (Chapter 13:20. Psalm 26:3-6; 34:12-14; 119:115. Amos 5:15.) Are they more to you than salvation? To “be the friend of the world is to be the enemy of God.” “Come out, and be separate, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive thee, saith the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:17, 18.)