Wisdom: The Principal Thing by Don Manley.

(Enumclaw, Washington: Winepress Publishing, 2002), 374pp, hardback, $29.95

Don Manley is an experienced pastor and teacher, and his pastor’s spirit is clearly evident through the practical encouragement given in this exposition of the book of Proverbs. He states that the purpose of this volume is “to help the people of God to better understand the important Book of Proverbs” and “to create a fresh desire within the hearts of God’s people to become students of the Word.” With this in mind, he concentrates on reaching the layperson with the practical teachings contained in this wonderful portion of the Scriptures.

This volume divides the book of Proverbs into three sections: Section one covers the first nine chapters of Proverbs which focus on the virtues of wisdom; Section two covers chapters 10-30 and deals with this wide range of proverbs in topical fashion; Section three focuses on chapter 31 and contains an exposition of the virtuous woman. This book is not a verse-by-verse exegetical commentary, but rather a treatment that highlights the key truths of Proverbs with a view toward personal application in one’s daily life.

The author especially concentrates on providing insights for using the book with children and for strengthening and building up the family. The book is structured to teach the practical truths of Proverbs in a variety of ways using pictures, diagrams, charts, lists, tables, and appropriate stories and quotes. It is creatively illustrated and contains a brief subject index. This book is directed toward a lay audience and would be a fine volume for use as a devotional guide for individuals and families, or as a text for a Sunday school class.

Reviewed by Steve Lewis, High Peaks Bible Fellowship