R.E. Clements, Wisdom in Theology, The Didsbury Lectures, 1989. 188 pp. The Paternoster Press, Carlisle; and Wm B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, 1992. $16.99.
In Wisdom, Clements does a good job of connecting the development of wisdom theology with the demise of the Kingdom of Judah in 587 BC.
Some Christians might be disturbed by the tensions he sees between wisdom and Zion theology, but a closer look reveals useful insights that would be helpful in harmonizing these competing strands for presentation to popular audiences.
For example, wisdom theology can be viewed as a providential development that expanded the religious horizons of Israelites in preparation for the advent of Christ. A relationship can be seen between the message of Ezekiel– God dwells among his people despite the loss of the Temple– and the message of the wisdom writer– God’s people can discern His presence through the orderly operation of human society and the material world.
A useful exercise would be to compare and contrast the interests of wisdom writers in relation to other OT theologies. For example,
As a final point, Clements does us a service by noting the relative insignificance of occult wisdom in the OT, a phenomena that has had a profound impact on the direction of Judaism and Christianity.