Studying the book of the bible, Wisdom of Solomon

Related imageI’m going to try out a certain way of studying the bible on a single verse, here on this post. If I like it, I will use it to do the entire book of the Wisdom of Solomon.

The Orthodox Christian bible has 76 books. The Protestant bible has 10 less at 66. I have some catching up to do. On the OCA website, there are daily scripture readings. I fell in love with this verse (highlighted in red) from Wisdom of Solomon:

Wisdom of Solomon 3:1-9 (Vespers, 1st reading)

1
But the souls of the righteous are in the hand of God, and no torment will ever touch them.
2
In the eyes of the foolish they seemed to have died, and their departure was thought to be affliction,
3
and their going from us to be their destruction; but they are at peace.
4
For though in the sight of men they were punished, their hope is full of immortality.
5
Having been disciplined a little, they will receive great good, because God tested them and found them worthy of himself;
6
like gold in the furnace he tried them, and like a sacrificial burnt offering he accepted them.
7
In the time of their visitation they will shine forth, and will run like sparks through the stubble.
8
They will govern nations and rule over peoples, and the Lord will reign over them for ever.
9
Those who trust in him will understand truth, and the faithful will abide with him in love, because grace and mercy are upon his elect, and he watches over his holy ones.

 

The entire passage is beautiful but verse 7 is such a beautiful word picture I want to study it more. You are welcome to join me.

A prayer before studying is in order:Illumine our hearts, O Master Who lovest mankind, with the pure light of Thy divine knowledge. Open the eyes of our mind to the understanding of Thy gospel teachings. Implant also in us the fear of Thy blessed commandments, that trampling down all carnal desires, we may enter upon a spiritual manner of living, both thinking and doing such things as are well-pleasing unto Thee. For Thou art the illumination of our souls and bodies, O Christ our God, and unto Thee we ascribe glory, together with Thy Father, Who is from everlasting, and Thine all-holy, good, and life-creating Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

  1. Read the verse out loud. Check-
  2. Write it out in my/your study journal. Check-
  3. Write out the verse that precedes it. Check- and the verse that comes after it. Check-(I wrote them in a different color. Blue for the main verse I am studying and green for the extra two.).
  4. Read the entire chapter if there is time. Check- Here is a LINK to it for you.
  5. Find out; Where and when this is taking place?, Who is speaking, about what and why?, What characteristics about God are being shown to us in this chapter or scripture?, What are the promises of God as shown through this verse or chapter? What is this going to look like in my life? A. Write down observations, key words or questions.

Answer to 5: This chapter (3) is titled; The Hope of the Righteous. The book is about Wisdom. Solomon pursued Wisdom as if she were a real lover. He had to have her. Of all of the things he could have asked God for, it was Wisdom he requested. At the beginning of the book there is information about it; the author is an unknown Jewish believer trying to entice back to Christianity apostate Jews and to attract pagans. #5 is too involved to put into this post. I do like this format and I think I will use it to study the entire book.

6. We are supposed to write a prayer or statement about the scripture and then ‘declare’ it over our lives. I will make this statement; if, Solomon- the wisest man to ever live, did not ask God for a single, physical thing; money, fame, women, etc., why do I pray for material things? And now I pray; Lord, help me to pray rightly. For You, for Your Wisdom and not for the things of this earth.

An additional part of the study is to include word studies. For this verse I am studying, ‘visitation’.

vis·it·a·tion
/ˌvizəˈtāSH(ə)n/
noun
  1. 1.
    (in church use) an official visit of inspection, especially one by a bishop to a church in the bishop’s diocese.
    Similar:
    official visit

    visit

    inspection

    tour of inspection

    survey

    review

    scrutiny

    examination

  2. 2.
    the appearance of a divine or supernatural being.
    Similar:

    apparition

    appearance

    manifestation

    materialization

I’m going with version 2. It seems to fit better into the context of the scripture. Also THIS from, Thayer’s Greek Lexicon:

b. In biblical Greek, after the Hebrew פְּקֻדָּה, that act by which God looks into and searches out the ways, deeds, character, of men, in order to adjudge them their lot accordingly, whether joyous or sad; inspection, investigation, visitation (Vulg. usuallyvisitatio): so universally, ἐν ἐπισκοπή ψυχῶν, when he shall search the souls of men, i. e. in the time of divine judgment, Wis. 3:13; also ἐν ὥρα ἐπισκοπῆς, Sir. 18:20 (19); so perhaps ἐν ἡμέρα ἐπισκοπῆς, 1 Peter 2:12 (see below); in a good sense, of God’s gracious care: τόν καιρόν τῆς ἐπισκοπῆς σου, i. e. τόν καιρόν ἐν ἐπεσκέψατο σε Θεός, in which God showed himself gracious toward thee and offered thee salvation through Christ (see ἐπισκέπτομαι, b.), Luke 19:44; ἐν καιρῷ ἐπισκοπῆς, in the time of divine reward, 1 Peter 5:6 Lachmann; also, in the opinion of many commentators, 1 Peter 2:12 (others, associate this passage with Luke 19:44 above; cf. DeWette (edited by Brückner) or Huther at the passage); from the O. T. cf. Genesis 50:24; Job 34:9; Wis. 2:20 Wis. 3:7, etc. with a bad reference, of divine punishment: Exodus 3:16; Isaiah 10:3; Jeremiah 10:15; Wis. 14:11 Wis. 19:14 (15); (etc.; cf. Sophocles Lexicon, under the word).

There is a feminine and masculine understanding of the word. The feminine seemed more fitting than the masculine. I find this interesting since Wisdom is spoken of in the feminine.

Ok, that’s it. Did you like it? I do. I may modify it, I may not. I will be delving deeper into this book. I like it very much and have not yet had a chance to explore it as thoroughly as I’d like. Let me know if you would like more postings about it and other books, chapters of scripture from the bible I study.

On a side note; I have been looking for pens to use in my bible that do not bleed through the pages and yet are easy to use and stand out. If you like to write in your bible you may have experienced a similar struggle looking for pens. I ran across KaiserCraft gel pens at Hobby Lobby to use in a coloring book. I tested them out and love them on my bible. they do not bleed through the page and the colors are easy to see. There is just one issue with them, they take a bit to dry and will smear or rub off until then. I can deal with that better than I can having them bleed into the page under them. If you’re in a hurry just blow on them a bit until they dry or leave your bible open and fix yourself a cup of tea, or use the time to memorize scripture, pray, etc. The pens have a fine tip which is great for stenciling or underlining.

Image result for kaisercraft gel pens