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10 A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.

11 He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that followeth vain persons is void of understanding.

12 The wicked desireth the net of evil men but the root of the righteous yieldeth fruit.

13 The wicked is snared by the transgression of his lips: but the just shall come out of trouble.:

14 A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth: and the recompence of a man's hands shall be rendered unto him.

15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.

16 A fool's wrath is presently known but a prudent man covereth shame.

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blished for ever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment.

20 Deceit is in the heart of them that imagine evil: but to the counsellors of peace is joy.

21 There shall no evil happen to the just but the wicked shall be filled with mischief.

22 Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight. concealeth

23 A prudent man knowledge: but the heart of fools proclaimeth foolishness.

24 The hand of the diligent shall bear rule: but the slothful shall be under tribute.

25 Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: but a good word maketh it glad.

26 The righteous is more excellent than his neighbour: but the way of the wicked seduceth them.

27 The slothful man roasteth not that which he took in hunting: but the substance of a diligent man is precious.

28 In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death. (M)


(M) Farther miscellaneous proverbs. — "This chapter (says Bishop Patrick) begins with an admonition, often inculcated in this book, concerning the affection wherewith a man that would be wise and good, ought to receive charitable reproofs. And there are several things repeated concerning the providence of Almighty God, in punishing (bad) men according to their wickedness, and delivering good men from

those who seek their destruction; which are notably expressed in ver. 5-7, where he observes how the wicked, labouring to compass their ends, by cozenage, or by violence, even by blood, not only miscarry in their designs, but are unexpectedly overturned and subverted out of their places, wherein they behaved with such injustice and cruelty.

"There are divers instructions also repeated about several virtues and vices,

NOTES-Chap. XII. Con.

Ver. 10. Tender mercies-Heb. "bowels." Ver. 12. Desireth the net - Marg. "Fortress." The Hebrew bears both senses, but we prefer the former, as meaning that the wicked man desires a dishonest (or unlawful) net, that he may take advantage of his neighbours.

Ibid. The root of the righteous-Meaning, their riches have a root in their industry. A Spanish arabassador being shown, in the treasury of Venice, a great quantity of gold, turned up some from the bottam: and on being asked why he did so, he replied, To see if it had any root; for his master's riches had a root in his gold mines."

Ver. 13. The wicked is snared, &c.-Heb. "The snare of the wicked is the transgression of his lips." See chap. xvin. 7,

Ver. 16. Presently known-Heb. "In the same day;" intimating that a wise man will pause before he shows his anger.

Ver. 18. There is that speaketh, &c. -See Ps, lvii. 4. Ver. 19. But for a moment—that is, he is soon confuted.

Ver. 21. No evil.... to the just-that is, eventaally all shall be overruled for good.

Ver. 26. The righteous is more excellent →→ Marg. abundant;" i. e. "more successful;" be cause "the way,'' i. e. the course of life adopted by the wicked, "seduceth them" into extravagance and crime.

Ver. 27. The slothful roasteth not—that is, even when he gets food gratis, he is too idle to dress it,

More general maxims]




WISE son heareth his father's instruction but a scorner heareth not rebuke.

2 A man shall eat good by the fruit of his mouth but the soul of the transgressors shall eat violence.

3 He that keepeth his mouth keepeth his life but he that openeth wide his lips shall have destruction.

4 The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat.

5 A righteous man hateth lying: but a wicked man is loathsome, and cometh to shame.

6 Righteousness keepeth him that is upright in the way: but wickedness overthroweth the sinner.

7 There is that maketh himself rich, yet hath nothing: there is that maketh himself poor, yet hath great riches.

8 The ransom of a man's life are his riches: but the poor heareth not rebuke.

[on various subjects.

9 The light of the righteous rejoiceth: but the lamp of the wicked shall be put out.

10 Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom.

11 Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase.

12 Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.

13 Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded.

14 The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.

15 Good understanding giveth favour: but the way of transgressors is hard.

16 Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open his folly.

17 A wicked messenger falleth into mischief: but a faithful ambassador is health.


especially those of the tongue; among which Alelancthon commends this to the remembrance of the reader, (ver. 22.) Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord,' who recommends to us, (says he,) the love and care of truth, both in doctrines concerning himself, and in arts and in all honest covenants and contracts. For truth being among the chief and most conspienous virtues, the contrary vice is condemned by a terrible word-abomination." Lord Bacon upon another passage in this chapter, (ver. 10.) observes, “That there is implanted in man's nature, a noble and excellent affection of pity and compassion (called here Mercy,) which extends itself even unto brute creatures, that are by divine ordination subject to his coinmand. Nay, further, it is most certain that the worthier any soul is, (i. e. the bet ter its disposition,) the larger is its compas

sion. For contracted and degenerate minds, imagine these things appertain not to them; but the mind that looks upon itself as a nobler portion of the universe, is kindly affected towards inferior creatures out of the communion there is between them; therefore, we see, that under the old law there were many precepts concerning this, which were not so much ceremonial, as institutious of mercy." (See Exod. xxxiii 5, 19; Deut. v. 4, &c.)

Without sanctioning every expression of this great man, we may freely admit the importance of this moral duty of compassion to the brute creation. "A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast; but the tender mercies of the wicked,' even their pretended kindnesses, are, in fact, cruel. And if their kindness be cruel, what, then, can we think of their severity?


CHAP. XIII. Ver.2. Eat violence.-This expression appears to us elliptical; the latter clause, fully expressed, would be," But the soul of transgressors (by the fruit of their mouth) shall eat violence." Compare chap. xii. 14.

Ver. 11. Gathereth by labour - Heb. "With the hand."

Ver. 13. Shall be rewarded-Marg. "Shall be in peace."

Ver. 14. To depart-Heb. "To turn him." So Boothroyd, &c.

Ver. 17. A wicked messenger falleth into mischief, (or evil, and involves others with him,) but a faithful ambassador (the class of messengers here intended) is health-Holden, "A healing medicine;" it being his office to heal differences, and promote peace.

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18 Poverty and shame shall be to him that refuseth instruction: but he that regardeth reproof shall be honoured.

19 The desire accomplished is sweet to the soul: but it is abomination to fools to depart from evil.

20 He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.

21 Evil pursueth sinners: but to the righteous good shall be repaid.

22 A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children's children: and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.

23 Much food is in the tillage of the poor but there is that is destroyed for want of judgment.

24 He that spareth his rod hateth his son but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.

25 The righteous eateth to the satisfying of his soul: but the belly of the wicked shall want. (N)




EVERY wise woman buildeth her house but the foolish plucketh

it down with her hands.

2 He that walketh in his uprightness feareth the LORD: but he that is perverse in his ways despiseth him.

3 In the mouth of the foolish is a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them.

4 Where no oxen are, the crib is clean: but much increase is by the strength of the ox.

5 A faithful witness will not lie: but a false witness will utter lies.

6 A scorner seeketh wisdom, and findeth it not: but knowledge is easy unto him that understandeth.

7 Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge.

8 The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way: but the folly of fools is deceit.


(N) More general maxims on various subjects. We shall notice two or three passages that require explanation. Ver. 8. we read, "There is [a man] who maketh himself rich," that is, accumulates great wealth, "yet hath nothing;" because, in arbitrary countries, if this became known, the prince may, under some pretence or other, demand the whole, as in the next verse, for the ransom of their life." On the other hand, there are benevolent persons who spend their property in doing good, who enjoy great riches in the public esteem, and are not likely to be called upon in the way just mentioned. Their character screens them from the suspicion of ill-gotten wealth, and from the rebuke and restraint which that often calls for from the government.

Ver 16. we read, "Every prudent man dealeth with (or in) knowledge," and turns

the merchandize to good account, (chap. iii. 14,) but "the fool layeth open (Marg. spreadeth out) his folly," as travelling merchants do their goods, but to no effect; for who will purchase folly?

Again, ver. 22. We learn that a good man leaveth an inheritance to his children's children," which may, in the first place, intimate that he does not forfeit his inheritance, either by extravagance or crime yet this inheritance does not always consist of lands and tenements; but the character of a good man is often a portion to his children; and his blessing and prayers their best inheritance. Thus Bishop Hall esteemed the prayers and admonitions of his pious mother; and the excelleut Mr. Flavel says, "I bless God for a religious tender father, who often poured out his soul to God for me; and this stock of prayers I esteem above the fairest inheritance on earth."


Ver. 23. There is that is destroyed-Or, “There (it is) destroyed," or perishes, for want of judgment in cultivation. See chap. xii. 11.

Ver. 24. He that spareth his rod.-See Note on chap. iii. 12.

CHAP. XIV. Ver. 3. Is a rod or branch) of -According to the language or character of

persons, the Hebrews represent a sword, or a rod, or branch, as it were, growing out of the month. The former intends spiteful and malicious words; this, probably, vapouring and boasting language. See Expos. chap. v.

Ver. 6. To him that understandeth - Rather, "To him that bath understanding;" (Holden) i, e. who hath been divinely taught.

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9 Fools make a mock at sin: but among the righteous there is favour.

10 The heart knoweth his own bitterness; and a stranger doth not intermeddle with his joy.

11 The house of the wicked shall be overthrown: but the tabernacle of the upright shall flourish.

12 There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.

13 Even in laughter the heart is sorrowful; and the end of that mirth is heaviness.

14 The backslider in heart shall be filled with his own ways: and a good man shall be satisfied from himself. 15 The simple believeth every word: but the prudent man looketh well to his going.

16 A wise man feareth, and departeth from evil: but the fool rageth, and is confident.

17 He that is soon angry dealeth foolishly and a man of wicked devices is hated.

18 The simple inherit folly: but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.

19 The evil bow before the good; and the wicked at the gates of the righteous.

20 The poor is hated even of his own neighbour: but the rich hath many friends.

21 He that despiseth his neighbour sinneth but he that hath mercy on the poor, happy is he.

22 Do they not err that devise evil? but mercy and truth shall be to them that devise good.



23 In all labour there is profit: but the talk of the lips tendeth only to penury.

24 The crown of the wise is their riches but the foolishness of fools is folly.

25 A true witness delivereth souls: but a deceitful witness speaketh lies.

26 In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge.

27 The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.

28 In the multitude of people is the king's honour: but in the want of people is the destruction of the prince.

29 He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly.

30 A sound heart is the life of the flesh but envy the rottenness of the bones.

31 He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the


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32 The wicked is driven away in his wickedness: but the righteous hath hope in his death.

33 Wisdom resteth in the heart of him that hath understanding: but that which is in the midst of fools is made known.

34 Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.

35 The king's favour is toward a wise servant: but his wrath is against him that causeth shame. (O)


(0) More general observations.-" As the foregoing chapter began with the character of a wise sou, so this with that of a good mother, who, by her prudent care, makes the family flourish, when a foolish

woman throws all into confusion and distress for so the wise man observes," She pulls down the house with her own hands," that is, ruins the family without any other help. There needs no more than a bad wife to undo a family." Bishop Patrick.


Ver. 10. The heart knoweth his own bitternessHeb. "The bitterness of his soul."

Ver. 20. But the rich hath many friends-Heb. "Many are the lovers of the rich."

Ver 27. The fear of the Lord.-See chap. xiii. 14. Ver.29. Hasty of spirit-Heb. "Short of spirit."

Ver. 30. A sound heart-that is, "an honest and good heart." Luke viii, 15.

Ver. 32. Hath hope in his death.-See Exposition, chap. x.

Ver. 33. That which is in the midst, &c.- that is, a fool soon discovers his own emptiness.

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2 The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.

3 The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good. 4 A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.

5 A fool despiseth his father's instruction: but he that regardeth reproof is prudent.

6 In the house of the righteous is much treasure: but in the revenues of the wicked is trouble.

7 The lips of the wise disperse knowledge: but the heart of the foolish doeth not so.

8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.

9 The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the LORD: but he loveth him that followeth after righte


10 Correction is grievous unto him that forsaketh the way: and he that hateth reproof shall die.


11 Hell and destruction are before the LORD: how much more then the hearts of the children of meu ?

12 A scorner loveth not one that reproveth him: neither will he go unto the wise.

13 A merry heart maketh a cheer ful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.

14 The heart of him that hath understanding seeketh knowledge: but the mouth of fools feedeth on foolish

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EXPOSITION-Chap. XIV. Continued.

In the sixth verse, Solomon observes, "A scorner seeketh wisdom, and findeth it not;" on which the great Lord Bacon hath made this useful gloss, "He that comes to seek after, knowledge, with a mind (disposed) to scorn and censure, shall be sure to find matter enough for his hubut none for his instruction:" the grand reason of which is, the want of that humble disposition which our Lord declares necessary to constitute a disciple of Wisdom's school, and a subject of the Saviour's kingdom. (Mark x. 15.) He that would be truly wise, must not be wise in his own conceit.


One other passage is too important to he passed over: "The backslider in heart," who secretly revolts from God, and turns back into the ways of sin," shall be filled with his own ways:" he shall have enough of it," as we proverbially say: he shall eat of the fruit of his own doings, and be filled with his own devices," (chap. i. 31.) and the good man who perseveres in the way of truth and righteousness, he also shall be satisfied from himself;" or rather, as Mr. Holden and Dr. Boothroyd render it," from his ways:" that is, the testimony of a good conscience, and the assurance of the divine favour and blessing.


CHAP. XV. Ver. 2. Poureth out-Heb. " belcheth, or bubbleth."

Ver.4. A wholesome tongue-Heh, "The healing of the tongue," or, as Boothroyd, "The healing tongue."

Ver. 10. Correction-Marg. "Instruction." So' it is rendered, chap. i. 2, and below, ver. 52, 33. The word bears both senses.

Ver. 11. Hell and destruction.-See Job xxvi. 6, and Note.

Ver. 13. A merry-a lively, rejoicing heart. So

ver. 15.

Ver. 17. A dinner of herbs-that is, sallads.-A® stalled ox-An ox tatted in the stall.

Ver. 19. Is made plain-Heb. "Raised up, as a causey."

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