Proverbs 23:23 – The Value of Truth

Buy truth, and do not sell it; buy wisdom, instruction, and understanding.

(Pro 23:23 ESV)

This is not unlike last week’s Proverb about applying your heart to understanding; it takes effort. In this case the effort may be money. How does one “buy” truth? The commentaries and dictionaries I have access to seem to suggest that “buy” is meant figuratively in the sense that coming into possession of it is costly and worthwhile; it is not literally about money. Truth doesn’t rain from heaven, randomly falling into your lap, but is something you need to work for. But, oh, the reward of your effort.

Also notice that “wisdom, instruction, and understanding” are tied to “truth.” The concept of truth, in this case, is clearly both academic in nature (instruction and understanding) and also contains more than a hint of personal maturity (wisdom). Truth is not merely propositional, it is personal and transformative.


One thought on “Proverbs 23:23 – The Value of Truth

  1. It’s funny, because I’ve been thinking about this very topic. I’m curious as to how someone with an atheistic worldview would answer the question of the value of truth, but I haven’t run into anyone of whom I could ask the question: Does truth have value? Why? As as outsider to atheism looking in, it doesn’t seem as though there is any significant reason to value truth in that worldview. Reality doesn’t care if your beliefs are true. Having truth doesn’t change anything. Your beliefs could be true, or you could live in delusion; Death swallows both equally. In light of oblivion, why bother?

    If anybody wants to ring in and give an answer, I would value the truth of your response.

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