The first five verses of this chapter again talk about how important it is to have wisdom.
My son, keep my words
And treasure my commandments within you.
2 Keep my commandments and live,
And my teaching as the apple of your eye.
3 Bind them on your fingers;
Write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,”
And call understanding your intimate friend;
5 That they may keep you from an adulteress,
From the foreigner who flatters with her words
This is re-iterating what a lot of chapter 1 talks about. It is not enough to just know the commands and teachings. You must consider them as some of the most important things you know. Following the commands and having wisdom will allow you to live. This implies that a lack of wisdom will bring death. The rest of the chapter details how this can lead to serious harm, and death.
The rest of the chapter can be a literal case of a man being seduced by a woman, or it can be symbolic of any person being tempted and falling to that temptation. This shows a pattern of falling. The first step is going to a place where the temptation is found. This is in verse 8 where it talks about passing near her corner, and then going all the way to her house. Wisdom would show that we should avoid going around things where we know we will be tempted.
Then, verse 9 says that this is being done in the darkness, or when we don’t think people can see us. In most cases, if we are going to sin, it is going to be when people are not watching, or at least people that we know would be bothered by what we are doing. Again, if we are wise, we will surround ourselves with people who will help us avoid temptation and stay away from those who draw us in to sin.
Then, when we are close to temptation, the sin can look very appealing, and it appears that we won’t get caught – so it is okay. Verses 17-21 are showing this when talking about the couch and bed being adorned, and when it talks about the husband being gone for a long period of time.
With all of this, the man being talked about in this passage falls into temptation and sins. He does not know this will cost him his life according to verse 23. This is not saying that falling into temptation once and sinning means death, but when we fall into a temptation and are not wise enough to run from that in the future, we are going to fall into that same temptation again and again. Then, we will escalate the sin, and get sucked into it until it is a lifestyle.
Wisdom, specifically Godly wisdom, is critical to both avoiding unnecessary problems in this life and in having eternal life in the kingdom. This can only be accomplished by treasuring scriptures and a relationship with God.