The Excellent Wife of Proverbs 31 An Exposition of Proverbs 31:10-31 -- By: David J. MacLeod

Journal: Emmaus Journal
Volume: EMJ 20:1 (Summer 2011)
Article: The Excellent Wife of Proverbs 31 An Exposition of Proverbs 31:10-31
Author: David J. MacLeod


The Excellent Wife of Proverbs 31
An Exposition of Proverbs 31:10-311

David J. MacLeod

Dave MacLeod is Dean for Biblical Studies at Emmaus Bible College and is Associate Editor of The Emmaus Journal.

Introduction

Vino in Napoli wrote to newspaper columnist, Abigail Van Buren, “Dear Abby: I am an Italian who reads your articles in the Rome Daily American. I am very much interested in meeting the Memphis, Tenn., lady who is looking for a husband. I am thirty-two years old and am 5 feet 11 inches. I am very well built and have olive skin and green eyes and plenty of black hair. I speak five languages and come from Italian nobility on my mother’s side. I play the mandolin very well and sing romantic songs. The Memphis lady says she is self-supporting, is in good health, and she owns a late model American-made automobile. If she would like to correspond with me, please ask her to send me a recent photograph of the automobile.”2 I think we would all agree that Vino needed counsel on what to look for in a wife.

When political leader, William Jennings Bryan (1860-1925), was a young man, he went to call on the father of his prospective wife to seek the hand of his daughter in marriage. Knowing the strong religious feelings of the father, he thought he would strengthen his case by a quotation from the Bible. He quoted the proverb of Solomon: “He who finds a wife finds a good thing” (Prov. 18:22). To his surprise, the father replied with a citation from Paul to the effect that he who marries does well, but he who does not marry does better (cf. 1 Cor. 7:38)! The young suitor was for a moment confounded. Then with a happy inspiration he replied that Paul had no wife (cf. 1 Cor. 9:5) and Solomon had seven

hundred (cf. 1 Kings 11:3). Solomon, therefore, ought to be the better judge as to marriage!”3 As questionable as was Mr. Bryan’s interpretation, one cannot contest the wisdom of Solomon, “He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord.”4

There is no more attractive creature on earth than a truly excellent, Christian wife. When the famous evangelist—and bachelor—twenty-five-year-old George Whitefield (1714-70) visited New England, he spent a weeken...

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