The book of Proverbs is full of sayings, advice, and pieces of wisdom. The collection of proverbs presents the formula for a fulfilling and blessed life. Proverbs stresses important themes including: family life, spirituality, and personal fulfillment. In today's society, the proverbs can be found on t-shirts, on coffee mugs, inside fortune cookies, and on bumper stickers.
Carole Fontaine in the Fortress Commentary on the Bible, divides the books into "sense units. 1:1-33 Wisdom Introduced, 2:1-6:35 Instructions by the Sage Parent, 7:1-9:18 A Triad of Females: Wisdom, Folly, and Strange Woman, 10-15 Antithetic Teachings Collection, 16:1-22:16 The Royal Collection, 22:17-24:22 More Sayings of the Wise, 25:1-29:27 More Sayings of Solomon, 30:1-30:33 Teachings and Numerical Sayings, 31:1-9 A Mother's Instructions, 31:10-31 Acrostic on the Strong Woman.
Regrading a female motif or presence, the book of Proverbs presents several women. First, is the presence of Wisdom. Wisdom is seen as a female and is clearly the necessity for a cherished life. Wisdom is presented as God's first creation, and Wisdom is to be treasured. Folly is the opposite of Wisdom. Folly is to be avoided. Folly is presented as a woman who is foolish and thus destructive to one's life. Another female presented is the Woman Stranger. The woman stranger is a "loose woman" or adulteress. She is a temptress that leads one astray. Like Folly, the Woman Stranger is to be avoided. For the women presented in Proverbs, Wisdom is the pinnacle. She embodies the aspects of the perfect woman.