Is Wisdom a creation of God or an attribute of God's Nature?

Proverbs 8:22-30 and Wisdom 7:25 say that Wisdom is eternal, having existed before the beginning of the universe and is “a pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty God”:

“The Lord possessed me in the beginning of his ways, before he made anything from the beginning. I was set up from eternity, and of old, before the earth was made. The depths were not as yet, and I was already conceived, neither had the fountains of waters as yet sprung out. The mountains, with their huge bulk, had not as yet been established: before the hills, I was brought forth: He had not yet made the earth, nor the rivers, nor the poles of the world. When he prepared the heavens, I was present: when with a certain law, and compass, he enclosed the depths: When he established the sky above, and poised the fountains of waters: When he compassed the sea with its bounds, and set a law to the waters that they should not pass their limits: when he balanced the foundations of the earth; I was with him forming all things: and was delighted every day, playing before him at all times;” (Proverbs 8:22-30)

“For she is a vapour of the power of God, and a certain pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty God: and therefore no defiled thing cometh into her.” (Wisdom 7:25)

From what I understand, Wisdom is usually considered to be an attribute of God’s Nature rather than a creation of His.

However, Ecclesiasticus 1:4; 1:9; 24:8 appears to say that Wisdom is a creation:

“Wisdom has been created before all things, and the understanding of prudence from everlasting.” (Ecclesiasticus 1:4)

“He created her in the Holy Ghost, and saw her, and numbered her, and measured her.” (Ecclesiasticus 1:9)

“I came out of the mouth of the most High, the firstborn before all creatures:” (Ecclesiasticus 24:5)

How are these verses reconciled?

Could someone please clarify this issue for me?

Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks.

One way to reconcile all these is to recall one definition of wisdom, that wisdom is knowledge of causes. God is the first cause, so the highest wisdom is knowledge of God.

A place you did not mention is 1 Corinthians 1:24, “Christ the power of God and the Wisdom of God”. Since Jesus is begotten of the Father, he may be said to be an emanation in that sense; hence wisdom is a sort of emanation of God. And since Jesus was begotten of the Father before all ages, wisdom then is eternal and existed before the creation of the universe.

Wisdom can be considered as an attribute of God or as a creation, depending on who has it. God has perfect wisdom because he knows all causes, and so it is an attribute of him; when we know causes, we have wisdom to some degree. Knowledge can be acquired or infused, and there is a sort of knowledge had by the blessed in heaven whereby they know God directly. If knowledge of a cause is acquired, it is created wisdom; if it is the direct knowledge of God, then God is putting himself in the mind of the knower, and it is uncreated wisdom; if it is infused, I’m not sure.

But even uncreated wisdom may be said to be the first creation in the sense that a known thing is prior to the knowledge had of it, and even if nothing else existed but God, he would still have knowledge of himself as first cause, and therefore wisdom, in logical order, but not in order of time.

Hi WJL,

It is obvious that the author of Ecclesiasticus has another perspective : the incarnation of God’s wisdom in creation. Look at 1,1 :* All wisdom comes from the Lord.*

Thanks for the responses. It’s a little clearer but, I’m still sort of confused. :confused:

bump

I’m unsubscribing from this thread because you have bumped it repeatedly.

If nobody’s interested in continuing the discussion, let it go. Or maybe reword your question and post a new thread.

Since “wisdom” in the passages is interpreted to be a reference to Jesus - the God Man - you might see it as being both eternal and created:
“eternal” - eternally existing in the Second Person of the Trinity;
“created” (or having a beginning) when wisdom became present in the Incarnation - in the human nature of Jesus which had a beginning.

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