We see Wisdom personified in the Proverbs, as if she is an actual person. And that isn’t farfetched, actually; Proverbs says that by Wisdom God created the universe, and then John 1:3 says everything was made through Jesus. Putting those together, wisdom is embodied in Jesus.
In a way, this chapter shows the embodiment of foolishness:
A foolish woman is clamorous;
She is simple, and knows nothing.
For she sits at the door of her house,
On a seat by the highest places of the city,
To call to those who pass by,
Who go straight on their way:
“Whoever is simple, let him turn in here”;
And as for him who lacks understanding, she says to him,
“Stolen water is sweet,
And bread eaten in secret is pleasant.”
But he does not know that the dead are there,
That her guests are in the depths of hell.
I’m sure we all have memories from our school years of how kids that were well-behaved, or did well academically were often picked on by their peers. There is certainly an allure, a seductive quality, to foolish behavior. And there is peer pressure to “fit in,” which usually requires a lowering of standards or coarsening of behavior.
A stark picture is painted of the “foolish crowd,” though. Verse 18 says that they are “dead” and “in the depths of hell.”
With wisdom though (learning to understand the universe from God’s perspective) there is life:
For by me your days will be multiplied,
And years of life will be added to you.