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Admonition to Trust and Honor God

 3

My child, do not forget my teaching,

but let your heart keep my commandments;

2

for length of days and years of life

and abundant welfare they will give you.

 

3

Do not let loyalty and faithfulness forsake you;

bind them around your neck,

write them on the tablet of your heart.

4

So you will find favor and good repute

in the sight of God and of people.

 

5

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,

and do not rely on your own insight.

6

In all your ways acknowledge him,

and he will make straight your paths.

7

Do not be wise in your own eyes;

fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.

8

It will be a healing for your flesh

and a refreshment for your body.

 

9

Honor the Lord with your substance

and with the first fruits of all your produce;

10

then your barns will be filled with plenty,

and your vats will be bursting with wine.

 

11

My child, do not despise the Lord’s discipline

or be weary of his reproof,

12

for the Lord reproves the one he loves,

as a father the son in whom he delights.

 

The True Wealth

13

Happy are those who find wisdom,

and those who get understanding,

14

for her income is better than silver,

and her revenue better than gold.

15

She is more precious than jewels,

and nothing you desire can compare with her.

16

Long life is in her right hand;

in her left hand are riches and honor.

17

Her ways are ways of pleasantness,

and all her paths are peace.

18

She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her;

those who hold her fast are called happy.

 

God’s Wisdom in Creation

19

The Lord by wisdom founded the earth;

by understanding he established the heavens;

20

by his knowledge the deeps broke open,

and the clouds drop down the dew.

The True Security

21

My child, do not let these escape from your sight:

keep sound wisdom and prudence,

22

and they will be life for your soul

and adornment for your neck.

23

Then you will walk on your way securely

and your foot will not stumble.

24

If you sit down, you will not be afraid;

when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.

25

Do not be afraid of sudden panic,

or of the storm that strikes the wicked;

26

for the Lord will be your confidence

and will keep your foot from being caught.

 

27

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,

when it is in your power to do it.

28

Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come again,

tomorrow I will give it”—when you have it with you.

29

Do not plan harm against your neighbor

who lives trustingly beside you.

30

Do not quarrel with anyone without cause,

when no harm has been done to you.

31

Do not envy the violent

and do not choose any of their ways;

32

for the perverse are an abomination to the Lord,

but the upright are in his confidence.

33

The Lord’s curse is on the house of the wicked,

but he blesses the abode of the righteous.

34

Toward the scorners he is scornful,

but to the humble he shows favor.

35

The wise will inherit honor,

but stubborn fools, disgrace.

 


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Pr 3:1-35. The study of truth commended. God must be feared, honored, and trusted, and filial submission, under chastisement, exhibited. The excellence of wisdom urged and illustrated by its place in the divine counsels. Piety enforced by a contrast of the destiny of the righteous and the wicked.

1. law [and] commandments—all divine instructions (see on Ps 119:1 and Ps 119:4).

let thine heart keep—or sincerely observe (Pr 4:13; 5:2).

2. length … life—often promised as blessings (Ps 21:4; 91:16).

peace—includes prosperity (Ps 125:5).

add—abound to thee.

3. mercy and truth—God's faithfulness to His promises is often expressed by these terms (Ps 25:10; 57:3). As attributes of men, they express integrity in a wide sense (Pr 16:6; 20:28).

bind … write … heart—outwardly adorn and inwardly govern motives.

4. favour—grace, amiability (Pr 22:11; Ps 45:2); united with this,

a good understanding—(Compare Margin), a discrimination, which secures success.

in the sight … man—such as God and man approve.

5. Trust … heart—This is the center and marrow of true wisdom (Pr 22:19; 28:25). The positive duty has its corresponding negation in the admonition against self-confidence.

6. ways—(Ps 1:1).

acknowledge—by seeking His wise aid (Pr 16:3; Ps 37:5; Jer 9:23, 24).

direct—literally, "make plain" (compare Heb 12:13).

7. (Compare Pr 27:2; Ro 12:16).

fear … evil—reverentially regarding His law.

8. It—This conduct.

health—(Compare Margin).

to thy navel—for all the organs of nourishment.

marrow—(Compare Margin).

bones—frame of body. True piety promotes bodily health.

9, 10. (Compare Pr 11:25; Ex 23:19; De 18:4; Isa 32:8; 2Co 9:13).

10. presses—or wine fats (Joe 2:24; 3:13).

11, 12. The true intent of afflictions considered; they do not contradict the assertion of the blessed state of the pious (Job 5:17; Heb 12:5, 6).

12. he delighteth—or receiveth as denoting reconciliation regarding the offense which produced chastisement.

13. findeth—literally, "reaches," or "obtains by seeking."

getteth—literally, "draws out," as metals by digging.

14, 15. The figure of Pr 3:13 carried out.

it—that is, wisdom.

merchandise of silver—acquisition by trading.

fine gold—dug gold, solid as a nugget.

15. rubies—gems, or pearls.

16, 17. Wisdom personified as bringing the best blessings (compare Mt 6:33; 1Ti 4:8).

17. Her ways—such as she directs us to take.

18. Wisdom allegorized as

a tree of life—(Ge 2:9; 3:22) whose fruit preserves life, gives all that makes living a blessing.

19, 20. The place of wisdom in the economy of creation and providence commends it to men, who, in proportion to their finite powers, may possess this invaluable attribute, and are thus encouraged by the divine example of its use to seek its possession.

21. sound wisdom—(compare Pr 2:7).

let … eyes—that is, these words of instruction.

22-24. assign reasons in their value for happiness and ornament, guidance and support in dangers, both when waking and sleeping.

25. Be not—or, "You shall not be."

sudden fear—what causes it (Pr 1:27), any unlooked-for evil (Ps 46:3; 91:12; 1Pe 3:14).

desolation—(Pr 1:27).

26. The reason; such as are objects of God's favor.

be thy confidence—literally, "in thy confidence," in the source of thy strength (compare Na 3:9, for the same construction, Hebrew).

27, 28. Promptly fulfil all obligations both of justice and charity (compare Jas 2:15, 16).

29, 30. Do not abuse confidence and avoid litigation.

31. oppressor—or man of mischief. The destiny of successful evildoers warns against desiring their lot (Ps 37:1, 2, 35, 36).

32-35. Reasons for the warning.

froward—(Pr 2:15).

secret … righteous—in their communion (Am 3:7).

33. curse … wicked—It abides with them, and will be manifested.

34. The retribution of sinners, as in Ps 18:26.

35. inherit—as a portion.

shame—or disgrace, as opposed to honor.

promotion—(Compare Margin); as honor for well-doing makes men conspicuous, so fools are signalized by disgrace.




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