1. A bad conscience makes men timid; the
righteous are alone truly bold (Pr 14:26; Ps 27:1).
2. Anarchy producing contending rulers
shortens the reign of each.
but by a man … prolonged—or, "by
a man of understanding—that is, a good ruler—he who knows
or regards the right, that is, a good citizen, shall prolong (his
days)." Good rulers are a blessing to the people. Bad government as a
punishment for evil is contrasted with good as blessing to the
3. A poor man, &c.—Such, in power,
exact more severely, and so leave subjects bare.
4. They that forsake …
wicked—Wrongdoers encourage one another.
5. (Compare Joh 7:17). Ignorance of moral truth is due to
unwillingness to know it.
6. (Compare Pr 10:6). Riches cannot compensate for sin, nor
the want of them affect integrity.
7. (Compare Pr 17:25).
riotous men—or, "gluttons" (Pr 23:20,
8. usury … unjust gain—(Compare
Margin). The two terms, meaning nearly the same, may denote
excessive interest. God's providence directs the proper use of
9. (Compare Pr 15:8; 21:27).
hearing—that is, obeying. God requires
sincere worshippers (Ps 66:18; Joh 4:24).
10. (Compare Pr 26:27).
11. A poor but wise man can discover (and
expose) the rich and self-conceited.
12. great glory—or, cause for it to a
people, for the righteous rejoice in good, and righteousness exalts a
a man … hidden—that is, the good
retire, or all kinds try to escape a wicked rule.
13. (Compare Ps 32:3-5). Concealment of sin delivers none from
God's wrath, but He shows mercy to the humble penitent (Ps 51:4).
14. feareth—that is, God, and so
hardeneth his heart—makes himself
insensible to sin, and so will not repent (Pr 14:16;
15. The rapacity and cruelty of such beasts
well represent some wicked men (compare Ps 7:2; 17:12).
16. The prince …
understanding—that is, He does not perceive that oppression
jeopards his success. Covetousness often produces oppression, hence the
17. doeth violence … blood,
&c.—or, that is oppressed by the blood of life (Ge 9:6), which he has taken.
to the pit—the grave or destruction
(Pr 1:12; Job 33:18-24; Ps 143:7).
stay him—sustain or deliver him.
18. (Compare Pr 10:9; 17:20). Double dealing is eventually
19. (Compare Pr 10:4; 20:4).
vain persons—idle, useless drones,
implying that they are also wicked (Pr 12:11; Ps 26:4).
20. maketh haste … rich—implying
deceit or fraud (Pr 20:21),
and so opposed to "faithful" or reliable.
21. respect of persons—(Pr 24:23). Such are led to evil by the slightest
22. (Compare Pr 28:20).
evil eye—in the general sense of Pr 23:6, here more specific for
covetousness (compare Pr 22:9; Mt 20:15).
poverty … him—by God's
23. (Compare Pr 9:8, 9; 27:5). Those benefited by reproof will love
24. (Compare Mt 15:4-6). Such, though heirs, are virtually
thieves, to be ranked with highwaymen.
25. of a proud heart—literally, "puffed
up of soul"—that is, self-confident, and hence overbearing and
made fat—or, "prosperous" (Pr 11:25;
26. (Compare Pr 3:6-8).
walketh wisely—that is, trusting in
27. (Compare Pr 11:24-26).
hideth his eyes—as the face (Ps 27:9;
28. The elevation of the wicked to power
drives men to seek refuge from tyranny (compare Pr
28:12; 11:10; Ps 12:8).