A philosophical sermon (protreptic rhetoric, didactic exhortation, hortatory discourse, diatribe style) urging readers to pursue the traditional faith of Israel, conceived as divine wisdom. Wisdom grants the gift of immortality, which will vindicate the righteous in the final judgment. The book praises Wisdom, conceived as a divine hypostasis (a personified attribute), which is coeternal with God - the Savior, Word, and Revealer of God. The attributes of wisdom are adapted from Greek philosophy (Stoic-Platonic). But Wisdom's saving power in history retells the history of Israel. The rewards of Israel's monotheistic religion are contrasted with the folly of pagan idolatry and immorality, and its fitting punishments. The book presumes the preexistence and immortality of the human soul.
Canonical Status:Among the Deuterocanonical books of Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, and Russian Orthodox Churches Among the Old Testament Apocrypha of Protestants Included in the Septuagint and in numerous ancient translations of it Not included in the Hebrew Scriptures - Tanak
Author:Although Solomon is not mentioned by name, the book implicitly claims him as its (clearly pseudonymous) author (see chs. 7-9). An anonymous Hellenistic Jewish author, probably of the Diaspora in Alexandria, Egypt
Date:From the third century BC through the first century AD Probably late 1st century BC
Notes prepared by George Lyons (Professor of Biblical Literature)
for the Wesley Center for Applied Theology at Northwest Nazarene University
Copyright 2000 by the Wesley Center for Applied Theology
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