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And look! A woman comes to meet him,
dressed as a prostitute and with a cunning heart. Bible

“the woman.” (As per the LXX, and followed by the ESV). The woman of verse 8.

“dressed as a prostitute.” She was not a prostitute, she was another man’s wife, but she dressed as a prostitute to make her actions seem more legitimate. Prostitution was an accepted practice in the culture of the Bible, although certainly not condoned by Mosaic Law. This is the Hebrew word for a street prostitute, not a “sacred prostitute,” someone connected to cultic temple prostitution. The fact that the text says she was dressed like a prostitute almost certainly means that she had a veil on (cp. Gen. 38:14). The veil would identify her as a prostitute and also hide her true identity, which, as the wife of a homeowner in town, she would want to conceal from the public.

“cunning.” The Hebrew word means “guarded,” “secret,” or “hidden.” Her true self, her true motives, and the true consequences for being with her are all hidden from the unsuspecting person.


Commentary for: Proverbs 7:10