Proverbs 15:3 MEANING

Proverbs 15:3
(3) Beholding the evil and the good.--Waiting till the iniquity of the one is full (Genesis 15:16), watching to aid the other (Psalm 34:15; Psalm 34:17).

Verse 3. - The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding - keeping watch on - the evil and the good. The omnipresence and omniscience of Jehovah, the covenant God, is strongly insisted upon, and the sacred name recurs continually in this and the next chapter, and indeed throughout this Book of the Proverbs (see Wordsworth, in loc.). The LXX. renders the verb σκοπεύοιυσι "are watching," as from a tower or high place. To the usual references we may add Ecclus. 15:18, 19 Ecclus. 23:19, 20. Corn. a Lapide quotes Prudentius's hymn, used in the Latin Church at Thursday Lauds -

"Speculator adstat desuper,
Qui nos diebus omnibus
Actusque nostros prospicit
A luce prima in vesperum."

"For God our Maker, ever nigh,
Surveys us with a watchful eye;
Our every thought and act he knows,
From early dawn to daylight's close."

15:3. Secret sins, services, and sorrows, are under God's eye. This speaks comfort to saints, and terror to sinners. 4. A good tongue is healing to wounded consciences, by comforting them; to sin-sick souls, by convincing them; and it reconciles parties at variance. 5. If instruction is despised, reprove men rather than suffer them to go on undisturbed in the way to ruin. 6. The wealth of worldly men increases their fears and suspicions, adds strength to their passions, and renders the fear of death more distressing. 7. We use knowledge aright when we disperse it; but the heart of the foolish has nothing to disperse that is good. 8,9. The wicked put other things in the stead of Christ's atonement, or in the place of holy obedience. Praying graces are his gift, and the work of his Spirit, with which he is well pleased. 10. He that hates reproof shall perish in his sins, since he would not be parted from them.The eyes of the Lord are in every place,.... Which are expressive of his omniscience, of the full, clear, distinct, and perfect knowledge, which he has of all creatures and things; so that nothing is hid from him, but all open and manifest to him; as they are to Christ the essential Word, Hebrews 4:13; and also of the providence of God with respect to all persons in general, and to his own people in particular; and as he is infinite and immense, omnipresent and in all places of the world, so his omniscience and providence reach everywhere, to places most distant and secret, and to persons in them, who cannot be concealed from him, since he fills heaven and earth, Jeremiah 23:23;

beholding the evil and the good; meaning not evil things and good things, though that is true; the one he beholds with dislike, the other with pleasure; but evil men and good men: he beholds them as from a watch tower, as the word (u) signifies, from above, from heaven, where he is; see Psalm 33:13. By "evil" men may be meant both profane sinners and carnal professors; such as are more openly wicked, and declare their sin, as Sodom, or more secretly so; he sees into all the wickedness there is in their hearts, all their secret devices against his people; the works done by them in the dark, as well as their more open ones; and his eyes are upon all of them, to bring them into judgment at the last day: his eyes are particularly on the proud, to abase them; such as are under a disguise of religion, and have a form of godliness, he has his eyes upon; he sees through all their disguises; he knows on what foot they took up their profession; he discerns between that and true grace; he sees how they retain their lusts with their profession; observes the springs and progress of their apostasy; and will fix his eyes on the man without a righteousness, not having on the wedding garment, and order him into outer darkness. He also beholds "good" men; he sees all their bad things, their sins, and corrects them for them; their good things, their graces, and the exercise of them; their good works, the fruits of his own grace; their weaknesses, and supports and strengthens them; their wants, and supplies them; their persons, and never withdraws his eyes from them: these are on them continually, to protect and defend them; nor will he leave them till he has brought them safe to heaven; see 1 Chronicles 16:9.

(u) "prospectantes velut a specula", Michaelis; "speculatores", Schultens; "speculantes", Montanus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator; "speculatur", Cocceius.

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