1 Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool.
2 Also, that the soul be without knowledge, it is not good; and he that hasteth with his feet sinneth.
3 The foolishness of man perverteth his way: and his heart fretteth against the LORD.
4 Wealth maketh many friends; but the poor is separated from his neighbour.
5 A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape.
6 Many will intreat the favour of the prince: and every man is a friend to him that giveth gifts.
7 All the brethren of the poor do hate him: how much more do his friends go far from him? he pursueth them with words, yet they are wanting to him.
8 He that getteth wisdom loveth his own soul: he that keepeth understanding shall find good.
9 A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall perish.
10 Delight is not seemly for a fool; much less for a servant to have rule over princes.
11 The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.
12 The king's wrath is as the roaring of a lion; but his favour is as dew upon the grass.
13 A foolish son is the calamity of his father: and the contentions of a wife are a continual dropping.
14 House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from the LORD.
15 Slothfulness casteth into a deep sleep; and an idle soul shall suffer hunger.
16 He that keepeth the commandment keepeth his own soul; but he that despiseth his ways shall die.
17 He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.
18 Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying.
19 A man of great wrath shall suffer punishment: for if thou deliver him, yet thou must do it again.
20 Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.
21 There are many devices in a man's heart; nevertheless the counsel of the LORD, that shall stand.
22 The desire of a man is his kindness: and a poor man is better than a liar.
23 The fear of the LORD tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil.
24 A slothful man hideth his hand in his bosom, and will not so much as bring it to his mouth again.
25 Smite a scorner, and the simple will beware: and reprove one that hath understanding, and he will understand knowledge.
26 He that wasteth his father, and chaseth away his mother, is a son that causeth shame, and bringeth reproach.
27 Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge.
28 An ungodly witness scorneth judgment: and the mouth of the wicked devoureth iniquity.
29 Judgments are prepared for scorners, and stripes for the back of fools.
1 A poor man who fears God, is more honourable and happy, than a man without wisdom and grace, however rich or advanced in rank. #2|. What good can the soul do, if without knowledge? And he sins who will not take time to ponder the path of his feet. 3|. Men run into troubles by their own folly, and then fret at the appointments of God. #4|. Here we may see how strong is men's love of money. #5|. Those that tell lies in discourse, are in a fair way to be guilty of bearing false-witness. #6|. We are without excuse if we do not love God with all our hearts. His gifts to us are past number, and all the gifts of men to us are fruits of his bounty. #7|. Christ was left by all his disciples; but the Father was with him. It encourages our faith that he had so large an experience of the sorrows of poverty. #8|. Those only love their souls aright that get true wisdom. #9|. Lying is a damning, destroying sin. #10|. A man that has not wisdom and grace, has no right or title to true joy. It is very unseemly for one who is a servant to sin, to oppress God's free-men. 11|. He attains the most true glory who endeavours most steadily to overcome evil with good. #12|. Christ is a King, whose wrath against his enemies will be as the roaring of a lion, and his favour to his people as the refreshing dew. #13|. It shows the vanity of the world, that we are liable to the greatest griefs where we promise ourselves the greatest comfort. 14|. A discreet and virtuous wife is more valuable than house and riches. #15|. A sluggish, slothful disposition makes men poor; it brings them to want. And this applies both to the present life and that which is to come. #16|. If we keep God's word, God's word will keep us from every thing really hurtful. We abuse the doctrine of free grace, if we think that it does away the necessity and advantage of obedience. Those that live at random must die. This truth is clearly taught in words enough to alarm the stoutest sinner. #17|. God has chosen the poor of this world, to be rich in faith, and heirs of his kingdom. #18|. When parents keep under foolish tenderness, they do their best to render children a comfort to them, and happy in themselves. 19|. The spared and spoiled child is likely to become a man of great wrath. #20|. Those that would be wise in their latter end, must be taught and ruled when young. #21|. What should we desire, but that all our purposes may agree with God's holy will? #22|. It is far better to have a heart to do good, and want ability for it, than to have ability for it, and want a heart to it. #23|. Those that live in the fear of God, shall get safety, satisfaction, and true and complete happiness. #24|. Indolence, when indulged, so grows upon people, that they have no heart to do the most needful things for themselves. #25|. A gentle rebuke goes farthest with a man of understanding. #26|. The young man who wastes his father's substance, or makes his aged mother destitute, is hateful, and will come to disgrace. 27|. It is the wisdom of young men to dread hearing such talk as puts loose and evil principles into the mind. #28|. Those are the worst of sinners, who are glad of an opportunity to sin. 29|. The unbelief of man shall not make God's threatenings of no effect. Christ himself, when bearing sins not his own, was not spared. Justice and judgment took hold of our blessed Surety; and will God spare obstinate sinners?
Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.
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