Proverbs 7:10

[ 1 minutes to read ]

And, behold, there met him a woman with the attire of an harlot, and subtil of heart.
– Proverbs 7:10

[V]erses 10-12 describe the adulterous woman. Attire means to put on and refers to dress. Her dress was that of a harlot. Harlot is typically an adulterous woman. We are not told exactly what she was wearing. The attire that marks an adulterous woman is different in different times, places, and cultures. Some commentators suggest she was over-exposed or dressed form-fittingly, but I don’t see that in the text and we have the example of Tamar being covered but dressed as a harlot (Genesis 38:14). Whatever her garments consisted of, the point was more in the presentation and advertisement of availability. They were designed to catch attention.

The word for subtil indicates guarded or hidden and points to craftiness. She is outwardly open and inwardly closed. Her plans are concealed, though she comes out to meet him. There is a contrast between her appearance and her heart. This way does not lead to a whole satisfying relationship the way faithful marriage does (Proverbs 31:11). This path is only temporary physical passion and the end is destruction.

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