Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell.
Life can be like death, and life can be like hell, as said by metaphor. A whorish woman is a certain way to experience death and hell more than once (Pr 2:18-19; 7:27; 9:18). Sexual sins, craved by the lusts of the eyes and flesh, lead to death and hell. Adultery and fornication will destroy your soul, life, and body, and take you to hell here and hereafter.
Solomon used this chapter to warn his son, and all men, against fornication (Pr 5:1). He offered wisdom, understanding, discretion, and knowledge (Pr 5:1-2). He sought to save men from the fascinating temptation and horrible dangers of the strange woman (Pr 5:3). He described the painful consequences (Pr 5:4-14), the safety in a good marriage (Pr 5:15-20), the omniscience of God (Pr 5:21), and the judgment for sex sins (Pr 5:22-23).
Solomon had more experience with women than any hundred men. He had 700 wives and 300 concubines, and these were high class women (I Kgs 11:3). God gave him exceeding great wisdom and understanding to analyze their danger (I Kgs 4:29). He also knew of his father’s adultery with his mother (II Sam 11:1 – 12:25), his brother Amnon’s incest with his sister (II Sam 13:1-39), his brother Absalom’s folly with his father’s concubines (II Sam 16:21-22), and his brother Adonijah’s obsession with Abishag (I Kgs 2:12-25).
He saw death and hell – a miserable life of pain and trouble – caused by adultery many times. All men die physically, but they can also die to joy and success in this life. Wicked men go to hell after death, but there is another hell in this life – a torturous existence of guilt, misery, defeat, and pain. Scripture commonly uses death and hell in this figurative way (Pr 23:14; Ps 18:5; 86:13; 116:3; Jonah 2:2; Luke 15:24; I Tim 5:6; Jas 5:20).
The “other woman” has ripped many homes apart. Children were confused; long-term marriages were violated; soul pain was multiplied. Men have lost their jobs, their focus, their health, their wealth, their wives, their children, their reputations, their confidence, their peace, and their souls by this heinous sin. Its results are truly described as death and hell. Ask any sober man who has come back from its death (Pr 5:14; Ps 51:8).
Marc Antony lost Rome, and his life, through love for the seductive Cleopatra. These words – death and hell – perfectly describe Lot, destitute in a cave after impregnating his daughters (Gen 19:30-38), and Samson, blindly grinding for the Philistines (Judges 16:21). Solomon himself knew such women to be more bitter than death (Eccl 7:26).
Yet it is no less true that wicked women take men down to literal death, eternal death, and the lake of fire. How many adulterers have been killed by the jealous spouse of their paramour (Pr 6:34-35)? How many whoremongers have died from sexual diseases (Pr 7:23)? How many have become trapped in sexual addiction (Pr 5:22-23; 6:32; Hos 4:11)?
All whoremongers, unless the Lord Jesus Christ makes an exception by grace, as in the case of David, will be in the lake of fire (Rev 21:8; I Cor 6:9-11). Her beautiful feet and mincing steps are not as attractive now, are they, young man? That sexy walk leads to death and hell! Her path of sweet seduction and loving liaisons goes down, down, down.
No wonder the Lord Jesus taught the plucking out of right eyes and cutting off of right hands, rather than following the steps of this cruel fiend to hell (Matt 5:27-30). Paul said, “Flee youthful lusts” (II Tim 2:22). Get far away from her, now (Pr 5:8). She hides the precipice over hell behind her skirts. Step back! Run away! Never go near her again!
Solomon’s own son did not heed this lifesaving advice and warning against strange women. But why should he have? His father’s example was unlimited love of many women. Rehoboam, following his dad, foolishly lost ten of Israel’s twelve tribes and desired many wives. He had 18 wives and 60 concubines (II Chron 11:21-23).
Fathers! Teach your sons plainly, practically, and pointedly the dangers of whorish women and fornication. This is no small temptation, especially in this ungodly generation with every former limitation being taken out of the way for greedy lasciviousness. Keep your sons far from her. Teach them to avoid her at all costs. There will be death and hell to pay. Her love is a lie. And her reward is bitter and sharp pain (Pr 5:4; 6:28,33; 23:27).
Such a warning applies also to the seductive beauty and charms of the Church of Rome, the great mother whore of John’s vision (Rev 17:1-6). God called for His children to come out of her to avoid her coming judgment (Rev 18:4). Paul feared even those at Corinth might be seduced away from the true Jesus to another (II Cor 11:1-4). Do not look at her enticements; look at her path; it leads down to death and hell (II Thes 2:9-15).