THE  BOOK  OF  PROVERBS  #5




CHAPTER 18 


The Lord, Our Strong Tower


A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire; he rages against all wise judgment [Yes be becomes an island unto himself…and soon everyone just leaves him alone as he wants no other person’s judgment or wisdom on the any subject  -  Keith Hunt]


2 A fool has no delight in understanding, but in expressing his own heart [That just pretty well sums up a fool who want to listen to only himself; they simply figure they can’t learn from anyone on anything  -  Keith Hunt]


3 When the wicked comes, contempt comes also; and with dishonour comes reproach

[The wicked usually do have contempt for everyone but themselves; when people figure there is dishonour in others, they may address them with disapproval or disappointment  -  Keith Hunt]


4 The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters; the wellspring of wisdom is a flowing brook [If the person does have wisdom, their mouth can indeed bring forth deep and profound wisdom, like the spring can bring forth waters from the deep  -  Keith Hunt] 

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From  the  New  KJV  Study  Bible


18:1 isolates himself: One who always insists on his own way will break with his friends and companions.

18:2 More can be learned by listening than by talking.

18:4 deep waters ... flowing brook:- Perhaps this is a contrast between the deviousness of much human speech and the simple clarity of true wisdom.

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5 It is not good to show partiality to the wicked, or to overthrow the righteous in judgment [Doing either brings troubles upon troubles; partiality to the wicked brings forth more wickedness; overthrowing the righteous in  judgment brings forth wickedness  -  Keith Hunt]


6 A fool's lips enter into contention, and destruction, and his lips are the snare of his life [The fool’s talk just gets him in more and more trouble  -  Keith Hunt]


8 The words of a talebearer are like tasty trifles, and they go down into the inmost body [Those who dabble in tell-tailing, often bringing untruths, are sweet to those you desire and enjoy listening to tell-tailing, they let it sink down with enjoyment  -  Keith Hunt]


9 He who is slothful in his work is a brother to him who is a great destroyer [Being lazy will not get you much in the physical, about the same as one who for a living pulls down buildings, so making a destruction  -  Keith Hunt]


10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe [Yes there is much safely from the ways of the world in following the ways of God  -  Keith Hunt]


11 The rich man's wealth is his strong city, and like a high wall in his own esteem [The physical rich often do tend to look  to  their  money  or  wealth  to  keep  them  safe; but as many have found, some things money can not buy, i.e. a good marriage, good friends, respectable children, and good physical health  -  Keith Hunt]


12 Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty, and before honor is humility [We have a repeat of a like previous proverb; getting big-head often leads to being brought low; and before being honoured we must often be humbled  -  Keith Hunt]


13 He who answers a matter before he hears it, it’s folly and shame to him [Oh this is a big one - a very important proverb, that today many do not follow at all; they jump in with a reply before meditating on the matter; on matters you are not expert in you’d be wise to say nothing, and go off to investigate - Keith Hunt]


14 The spirit of a man will sustain him in sickness, but who can bear a broken spirit? [There are many things of the flesh that you can bear; what some have gone through in the flesh is remarkable, more so as they overcome the flesh; but break a man’s inner spirit and he’s down for the count - he’s out and just very difficult to bring back  -  Keith Hunt]


15 The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge [All saying there same thing….. the wise and prudent will always be seeking knowledge, they love to learn, to be corrected, and ever growing in knowledge  -  Keith Hunt]


16 A man's gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men [I guess there are times when the physical can put you in the presence of the great ones as the world would call  them; sometimes you can buy your way into being before great men, you know like spending a thousand dollars or more, to have a  meal and listen to some past President of the USA  bring a speech  -  Keith Hunt]


17 The first one to plead his cause seems right, until his neighbor comes and examines him [It the old saying, “There is always two sides to the story”  -  Keith Hunt]


18 Casting lots causes contentions to cease, and keeps the mighty apart [Ya if you are undecided on some issue, and all seem to be of equal relevance, you may have to cast the lot or draw sticks to give the final answer  -  nothing wrong with doing that if needs be  -  Keith Hunt]


19 A brother offended is harder to win than a strong city, and contentions are like the bars of a castle [Yes, sometimes getting into a dispute or quarrel with blood kin, can be as daunting as capturing a strong city defence, or getting out through the bars of a castle and into freedom  -  not impossible, just sometimes very hard to do  -  Keith Hunt]


20 A man's stomach shall be satisfied from the fruit of his mouth; from the produce of his lips he shall be filled [Often indeed, we can produce good or bad fruit to eat, by what words come out of our mouth, and the tone of voice carrying  them  -  Keith Hunt]


21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit [One step further in this proverb; the words out of our mouth can be like bullet that kill, or words that give life; the two extremes here given….death or life. As James said, oh what a little member can do; of course we know it’s from the mind to the tongue, so we must guard our mind to control our tongue  -  Keith Hunt]


22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord [AH YES, God made woman from Adam’s rib, made her to be a help fitting for him; two shall become one, they should become one physically, emotionally, spiritually  -  working together as a well oiled machine….using their strengths and abilities to compliment each other; using their strengths and abilities to pick each other up when one is down  -  Keith Hunt]


23 The poor man uses entreaties, but the rich answers roughly [It is a sad commentary on life at times, that a poor man uses humble words, acts like he’s low down in the pecking order of humans; while the rich can be puffed up with ego and vanity, they talk with roughness over the ones they think are some life-cell below them. It’s harder still when the poor and rich are having to converse with each other - so are the ways of the unconverted world  -  Keith Hunt]


24 A man who has friends must himself be friendly, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother [Indeed to have good friends you have to put yourself out as being a friendly person; and in so doing some friends are closer to you than blood kin  -  in some ways it is sadly so [a friend closer than a blood kin]  in this world at this time  -  Keith Hunt]

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From  the  New  KJV  Study  Bible


18:6-8 lips .., mouth ... words: Nothing good can come from the speech of a corrupt person.

18:9 See 10:26 and note.

18:12 honor.... humility: See 15:33 and note.

18:13 before he hears it: Shows prejudice in his decision.

18:14 If our inward person is broken, a precious resource is gone. Trust in God sustains the human spirit.

18:16 Gift in this context means a legitimate contribution, thus, it contrasts with the bribe of 15:27 and Deut. 16:19.

18:17 Both sides of a story must be heard.

18:18 Casting lots would render an impartial decision (see 16:33 and note).

18:19 Because a brother's offense is unwarranted and least expected, it is most difficult to reconcile,

18:20 See 12:14 and note.

18:21 Death ... life: See Jesus' statement in Matt. 12:37.

18:22 See 12:4; 31:10-31 and notes.

18:23 answers roughly: If money makes us arrogant, our spirit has been corrupted.

18:24 This verse is often applied to the intimate walk we have with Christ. But it also instructs us about how to attain friends.

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CHAPTER 19 


Truth, A Light for Our Way


Better is the poor who walks in his integrity than one who is perverse in his lips, and is a fool [Showing you may not be rich in the physical, but walking in the integrity of God, you are far better off than some perverse in talk and a fool to boot  -  Keith Hunt]


2 Also it is not good for a life to be without knowledge, and he sins who hastens with his feet [Desire without knowledge is not good, and to be overhasty is to sin and miss the mark - Amplified Bible. Paul said the Jews had a zeal but without knowledge. You can have a zeal for something but if you do not have the knowledge to go with it….trouble. You may have a zeal to mountain climb but without knowledge in how to do it, you could kill yourself. And if too hasty with things and not enough thought, you could end up sinning in ways that mess you up  -  Keith Hunt]


3 The foolishness of a man twists his way, and his heart frets against the Lord [The foolishness of man subverts his way (ruins his affairs); then his heart is resentful and frets against the Lord - Amplified Bible. Being foolish is the opposite to wisdom, it gets you into many troubles, and your mind is twisted to think it’s not twisted; then many fret and get so upset at the Lord, they curse Him, and use profanity at Him, half believing He exists (when most of the time they do not think of Him)  -  Keith Hunt]


4 Wealth makes many friends, but the poor is separated from his friend [So the world turns; when you have money and wealth to spent, you can find all kinds of people quite willing to help you spent; on the other hand being physically poor….not too many friends you find stay around you  -  Keith Hunt]


5 A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who speaks lies will not escape [Generally such people do reap what they sow; if not in this life, they will have lots to answer for in the next one - the second resurrection  -  Keith Hunt]


6 Many will intreat the favor of the nobility, and every man is a friend to one who gives gifts [Many will try to win the favor of the nobility with presents, bribes, flattery words, they think knowing such on “friendship” terms will get them out of a tough spot or their kids tough spot; and you have no problem at all in getting friends so-called, when your buttering them up with gifts and presents of different sorts. As they say “money talks” - and it sure has proved that over the centuries  -  Keith Hunt]


7 All the brothers of the poor hate him; how much more do his friends go far from him, he may pursue them with words, yet they abandon him [So it goes in the world; kin brothers and sisters can hate, at least dislike, the family member who is just not up in the income bracket as all the others are; and so if that is so among blood kin, it’s more so with the poor man’s friends…..obviously money they want not good true friendship, the fellow may try to keep them with good flattering words, yet they leave him - not true friends after all  -  Keith Hunt]


8 He who gets wisdom loves his own life; he who keeps understanding will find good

[Wisdom and understanding two wonderful attributes to have to help keep life pleasant and find much good in this lifetime  -  Keith Hunt]


9 A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who speaks lies shall perish [If not in this life time; there will be an account to answer for; full deep repentance or you’ll find yourself perishing in the second death, so it is written  -  Keith Hunt]


10 Luxury is not fitting for a fool, much less for a servant to rule over princes [Fools will usually trash in one way or another the luxury they find themselves it; and for a servant with not much education ruling educated princes, will in time find himself in mighty hot steaming water, and realize he’s in over his head, and things are getting hotter by the hour  -  Keith Hunt]


11 The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger, and his glory is to overlook a transgression [In the right circumstances overlooking a wrong is the correct way to go; some situations demand an apology from the offender and a promise to not offend that way again. Some serious transgressions  (like those within a church setting) may warrant more severe punishment; I cover all that in my detailed study on “Church Government” and my article  “All about Disfellowshipping.”  Certainly the wise use of wisdom guides discretion into being a person slow to anger  -  Keith Hunt]


12 The king's wrath is like the roaring of a lion, but his favor is like dew on the grass [Back the time when king did rule with a strong hand and had power at his disposal, this would have been an very true proverb; to day we could apply it to those in the position of leadership, be it work, in the military, or any other group setting with leaders; be on the wrong side of a leader and they could be like a roaring lion; be on the right side of them, and so be like dew on the grass  -  a welcoming  spirit that leads to easy and refreshment. Of course we are supposing this is in the context of overall goodness  -  where a leader has to correct or praise those under them  -  Keith Hunt]


13 A foolish son is the ruin of his father, and the contentions of a wife are a continual dripping [Either are good in the family setting; a foolish son will bring shame to the family, depending how foolish, is the ruin and shame on the father and family; the continual nagging or wanting to talk about an issue, can be like the dripping of a leaky tap, which needs fixing pronto like. A wife should never have to be like a slow dripping leaky tap, sit down with her and be a team, willing to talk about everything  -  Keith Hunt]


14 Houses and riches are an inheritance from fathers, but a prudent wife is from the Lord [You may get all kinds of gifts and presents from parents and/or friends, even an inheritance from a wealthy father; but a prudent, wise, sensible and advisable wife does come from the Lord, it’s the best gift you could have  -  Keith Hunt]  


15 Laziness casts one into a deep sleep, and an idle person will suffer hunger [We have already seen such a proverb listed, repeated for emphasis  -  a lazy person is like someone falling into a deep sleep or a coma;  they will not eat while being in that lazy state of mind. Now not having much to eat is not always from laziness. The apostle Paul found himself at times not having much to eat, while working hard in the Gospel work. He got by, had enough but not like feasting at a wedding. Other times he had more than enough  -  Keith Hunt]


16 He who keeps the commandment keeps his life, but he who is careless of his ways will die [This is nut shelling  Matthew 19  and  Romans 6…… the wages of sin is death (not repenting will lead you to the second death - Rev. 20); keeping the commandments (Matthew 19) will lead to life eternal; not because you can work your way to salvation (Eph. 2:8 You are saved by grace through faith), but because to receive God’s grace is conditional on you repenting and living a new life in Christ. For the full in-depth study of this life and death topic you need to study my article called “Saved by Grace”  -  Keith Hunt]


17 He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord, and He will pay back what he has given [It is mentioned over and over in the Bible that you remember the poor - Gal. 2:10…. and God will remember your works, and reward you accordingly, for we are rewarded according to our works - Rev. 22:12 - Keith Hunt]


18 Chasten your son while there is hope, and do not set your heart on his destruction [Yes indeed part of parenting is correct child rearing; today it seems a good idea that parents should take a childrearing course before undertaking to have children; there are many forms of chastening or correcting; some we have seen need the paddle, others a stern talking to will do it and bring the child to sorrowful tears.  The last part of the proverb could be saying what Paul said in Eph. 6:4  “…..And you fathers provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nuture and admonition of the Lord.” Yes there is much to child-rearing; we have a section on child-rearing on this website. The last part could also mean that not correcting your child you lead them to troubles, harm, in some cases even to destruction in death. I well remember a next door lady who told me that her son as an older teen got going with the wrong crowd. She finally told him to leave the house and not come back till he got sensible. She told me it would break her heart to see him hanging around down town with those wrong teens. She told me it took a year, but he finally woke up to his terrible path he was on; she welcomed him home with open arms, and as a very changed young man. I told her she did a very brave thing….and it was called “tough love,”  -  Keith Hunt]


19 A man of great wrath will suffer punishment; for if you rescue him, you will have to do it again [Obviously it is the individual’s quick and uncontrollable wrath that gets the person into trouble after trouble…… oh yes that quick temper if not brought under control will surely do you serious harm; sometimes you should not rescue but let them face the music and the consequences of having an uncontrolled wrathful temper  -  Keith Hunt]

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From  the  New  KJV  Study  Bible


19:1 Poverty is preferable to moral corruption.

19:2 without knowledge: Impulsive decisions often result in sins.

19:3 We must not blame the Lord when we suffer from careless actions.

19:4,6, 7 Thoughts on "fair-weather" friends.

19:5, 9 See 1.1:3, 5 where the fool destroys himself.

19:11 No attitude is more godly than to forgive or to overlook a wrong.

19:13 See 27:15, 16 and note.

19:14 From the Lord one receives all gifts, but a prudent wife is beyond comparison (see 31:10-31).

19:15 See notes on 6:9-11; 10:4, 5.

19:17 The way we treat the poor, whether to do them good or evil, is the way we treat the Lord (see note on 14:31).

19:18 To fail to discipline a child is to destroy him (see note on 13:24).

19:19 An unmastered temper is a source of unending grief (see James 1:20).

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20 Listen to counsel and receive instruction, that you may be wise in your latter days [We have indeed seen this teaching given to us many times before; it is vital to be of a mindset that will listen to counsel from experts or from anyone who has experience in what they want to share with you; we are to be willing to receive instruction, those words “receive instruction” are obviously in the context of a person who truly has good instruction on whatever, so you can benefit on out into your latter years. Willing to be taught will mean you will let God teach you His truths, when and how and by whom He chooses, as of course by His Spirit. To live as Jesus said we should, by every word of God (Mat. 4:4) you have to have a mind to be taught  -  Keith Hunt]


21 There are many plans in a man's heart, nevertheless the Lord's counsel—that will stand [Man can try and figure this and that, have all kinds of plans from his own heart, in the end it will be the Lord’s will and council that will stand the test of time. I was going to Canada [easiest country to immigrate to when I was 18, with no particular skills] and start on my adult plans I had planned out from being 7 years old. Oh yes I got to Canada, but walked straight into the plans God had for me. I was absolutely sure I’d started on my long planned adult life, the Eternal had different plans, and here I am still working His plan for me at nearly 75 [in just a few months], and will so be doing as long as I physically can  -  Keith Hunt]

   

22 What is desired in a man is kindness, and a poor man is better than a liar [Two of the important traits in character that a person can have, is kindness (gentleness, loving, doing good, helping and serving others), and being poor in spirit, humble, not lying about all the great things you’ve done and accomplished, when most of them are lies and exaggerations  - Isaiah 66:2  -  see also KJV note below  -  Keith Hunt]


23 The fear of the Lord leads to life, and he who has it will abide in satisfaction; he will not be visited with evil [The first words fit with Isaiah 66:2, you will be satisfied with life as it comes to you, ups and down, highs and lows, laugher and crying; not being visited with evil is a general statement, sometimes evil comes in a Christians life, even persecution unto death, but in the long scheme of things, even that is not evil per se when life eternal is before you  -  Keith Hunt]


24 A lazy man buries his hand in the bowl, and will not so much as bring it to his mouth again [A sluggard buries his hand in the dish, and will not so much as to bring it to his mouth - Amplified Bible.  An over emphasis maybe, but the truth is that a lazy sluggard is so twisted in mind that even working to feed himself, is outside his ability and mental astuteness  -  Keith Hunt]


25 Strike a scoffer, and the simple will become wary; rebuke one who has understanding, and he will discern knowledge [Strike a scoffer, and the simple will learn prudence, reprove a man of understanding, and he will increase in knowledge - Amplified Bible. Prudence is wisdom, common sense, shrewdness, good judgement. But all that could be used wrongly also. Get very harsh and even physical towards a scoffer who is of a simple mind (simple used as a negative) and they become shrewd, wary, as mistreated dogs become wary of strangers. But correct one who has an understanding mind and they will discern the knowledge of truth and so increase in knowledge  -  Keith Hunt]


26 He who mistreats his father and chases away his mother is a son who causes shame and brings reproach [This is obviously in the context of NOT honouring your parents; just not caring about them, in fact doing things that are classified as mistreating and chasing away, whatever all that may be; the bottom line the commandment about honouring your parents is being broken; it is way more than just not agreeing on some issue with your parents; it is a son bringing shame upon the family  -  Keith Hunt]


27 Cease listening to instruction, my son, and you will stray from the words of knowledge [Obviously instruction that is wise and good, edifying, and true knowledge;  leave it out of your life and you will stray from the good pathway and troubles will come  -  Keith Hunt]


28 A disreputable witness scorns justice, and the mouth of the wicked devours iniquity [Those not living a good respectable life will scorn true justice, it means nothing to them; and the wicked are likened to a mouth drinking down the waters of iniquity….pour it on, pour it on, as the saying goes, “I love this taste, oh give me more, I can’t get enough of this” the mouth of the wicked is saying  -  Keith Hunt]


29 Judgments are prepared for scoffers, and beatings for the backs of fools [Those who are mental scoffers as a way of life, and people with spaced-out minds, whom others look at as plain fools; troubles they will bring upon themselves, where the laws of the land will bring judgment and even physical penalties upon them. If you are a scoffer and fool in Singapore and do things there as a fool, you can get literally a swat with a cane on the back; be a big enough fool [like drug dealing] and you can have the judgment of death upon you  -  Keith Hunt]

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From  then  New  KJV  Study  Bible


19:21 The wise man makes the Lord's counsel his guide. 

19:22 What does God require of us? Kindness, referring to covenant faithfulness. The same Hebrew word is translated “mercy" in Mic. 6:8. 

19:23 He who fears God finds satisfaction, while the sinner's is often frustrated.

19:24 Too lazy even to lift his full hand to his mouth. 

19:25 The scoffer will not learn from his punishment (see 9:7-9 and note). However, the simple are still open enough that they may learn by observing the consequences faced by the scoffer (see 21:11 and note).

19:26 father... mother: See note on Ex. 20:12.

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CHAPTER 20 


God Wants Honest People


Wine is a mocker, strong drink is a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise [Truly indeed being led astray by having too much and physical fights and murder have occurred; being led astray by alcohol is not wise, not wise at all. I have a full study on the subject of alcohol and Christians on this website  -  Keith Hunt]


2 The wrath of a king is like the roaring of a lion; whoever provokes him to anger sins against his own life [Margin: fear or terror produced by the king’ wrath. Again we are warned not to indulge in making people in authority over us, get angrily mad….. a roaring lion can be unleashed, too our detriment  -  Keith Hunt]


3 It is honorable for a man to stop striving, since any fool can start a quarrel [The carless in how they live, think, talk, can start a quarrel; it’s only fool that live that way; but it is an honor for a person to not fall for the bait to quarrel and strive, sometimes you have to say nothing and just walk away  -  Keith Hunt]


4 The lazy man will not plow because of winter; he will beg during harvest and have nothing [The lazy man will look outside and see not a very good day coming, maybe the weather man has forecast some dull, cloudy, and unpredictability for a number of days  - could be rain; hence the lazy man lights the fire, puts up his feet and reads a good book, waiting for bright sunshine; problem is he may wait way too long and the next harvest shows the result…..he  ain’t  got  any  -  Keith Hunt]


5 Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water, but a man of understanding will draw it out [The man with understanding and a wise mind, knows that some have deep wisdom from life or wherever; the understanding people will draw it out from such persons and ever grow wiser by so doing - Keith Hunt]


6 Most men will proclaim each his own goodness, but who can find a faithful man? [Most will think their way is the best or have the most goodness; it’s called pride and vanity; it’s much harder to find someone who can admit someone else may be better, and others in the same field may have better deal  -  KeithHunt]



7 The righteous man walks in his integrity; his children are blessed after him [A man walking with God will walk WITH GOD, AND OBVIOUSLY raises his children the same way to walk;  -  Keith Hunt]


8 A king who sits on the throne of judgment scatters all evil with his eyes [You could say some judges, ministers, still have and give that appearance; sorry to say some judges have expressive eyes that could scatter all evil to fly out the room  -  Keith Hunt]

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From  the  New KJV Study Bible


20:1 See 23:29-35 and note.

20:3 Anyone can start a quarrel; to refuse to continue one takes courage and brings honor.

20:4 because of winter: Delayed his fall plowing until too late.

20:5 Persons of wisdom are not quick to offer advice; if we are wise, we will seek it from them.

20:8 Evil flees when a just person rules.

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9 Who can say, "I have made my heart clean,:, I am pure from my sin"? [Paul answered in the book of Romans…..ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God - Rom.3:23 - Keith Hunt]


10 Diverse weights and diverse measures, they are both alike, an abomination to the Lord [Wrong, sinful, wicked works of cheating devices in business workings are an abomination to God  -  a Christian must be fair and upright in all business transactions  -  Keith Hunt]

 

11 Even a child is known by his deeds, whether what he does is pure and right [We then must carry this observation to adults; sooner or later a persons behaviour will be clearly seen if it is pure and right  -  Keith Hunt]


12 The hearing ear and the seeing eye, the Lord has made them both [So we must control and use them for right living; sometimes it is prudent to walk away from hearing what others are talking about; there are times we must shut our eyes from seeing things that are sinful. That is our individual responsibility…… but if they are such an evil, it may also be our responsibility to report to higher authorities, i.e. child pornography, someone with plans to kill other  -  Keith Hunt]


13 Do not love sleep, lest you come to poverty; open your eyes, and you will be satisfied with bread [We have seen already this attitude of mind; being lazy is not a Godly trait, it does not belong in the Christian’s living ethic  -  Keith Hunt]


14 “It is good for nothing,” cries the buyer; but when he has gone his way, then he boasts [Some people take great pride in obtaining something for a much lower price than what an honest and fair price would be; they make it a game to see how low they can get it for. They may say things like, “It’s so old it really ain’t worth much” when old has nothing to do with its value. Or “I can get one in the next town far cheaper” when the next town is just a lie. Christians should be fair and honest when buying….as should those who are selling. I once bought a “Teardrop” trailer, the man wanted $6, 500 for it, I asked if he’d take $6,000, he said he would, then went on to say he would not sell it to me unless my Ford Taurus would pull it. The weight of it was he said deceptive, heaver than it looked. He and I checked with the Ford dealership, and my car was good to pull it. I thought that was very honest of him  -  Keith Hunt]


15 There is gold and a multitude of rubies, but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel [Gold and rubies can make fine jewelry; better still is the precious jewel of those who speak wise and knowledgable talk  -  Keith Hunt]


16 Take the garment of one who is surety for a stranger, and hold it as a pledge when it is for a seductress [The judge tells the creditor, Take the garment of one who is security for a stranger; and hold him in pledge when he is security for foreigners - Amplified Bible. 

Be sure to get collateral from anyone who guarantees the debt of a stranger. Get a deposit if someone guarantees the debt of a foreigner - New Living Translation. 

An alternate reading in the Hebrew text is the debt of an adulterous woman, compare 27:13 - Note in New Living Translation.

The bottom line is I think what the New KJV Study Bible gives in its note - see below  -  Keith Hunt]


17 Bread gained by deceit is sweet to a man, but afterward his mouth will be filled with gravel [At first it may seem sweet to people who have gained a deal with deceit and lies and fraud; usually it back-fires on them and they are found out as charlatans, then what they have to deal with by so many realizing they are fraudsters is like having gravel in the mouth  -  Keith Hunt]


18 By wise counsel wage war [Purposes and plans are established by counsel; and (only) with good advice make or carry on war - Amplified Bible.  Anything very serious should be undertaken only with good counsel from others who have knowledge in what is planed  -  Keith Hunt]


19 He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets; therefore do not associate with one who flatters with his lips [Often a talebearer, busibody gossiper, does it with flattery and sweet talk, to gain even more approval, from the one being flattered; they are sweet talking slimy snakes that only want to see others crushed….have nothing to do with such people  -  Keith Hunt]

 

20 Whoever curses his father or his mother, his lamp will be put out in deep darkness [We are given warning once more that breaking the commandment to honour your father and mother is not to be taken lightly; such as perpetually break it and not repent, will be put in deep darkness…..the second death of Rev. 20. It will be lights out for them  -  Keith Hunt]


21 An inheritance gained hastily at the beginning will not be blessed at the end [You’ve heard of or know of a son or daughter who does everything they can to get their inheritance from their parents, way before their parents die. They may try every scheme in the book to twist their parents around their little finger. Usually such individuals are not good investors with an early inheritance, they want things right now, or yesterday  -  Keith Hunt]


22 Do not say, "I will recompense evil";  wait for the Lord, and He will save you [It is written “….vengeance is mine, I will repay says the Lord.” - Rom. 12:19. If we were to keep note of all what we consider “dirt” done to us, we would ever be seeking ways to avenge, it would soon consume our every spare minute  -  Keith Hunt]


23 Diverse weights are an abomination to the Lord, and dishonest scales are not good [A repeat of an earlier proverb; God often repeats things to make sure we understand important issues of life. Those who practice shady business transactions are an abomination to the Lord  -  Keith Hunt]


24 A man's steps are of the Lord: How then can a man understand his own way?

[To be truly walking the right way in life, comes only from seeking the Lord and His ways to live here and now and then for all eternity; a man, by himself, cannot understand his own way; we have seen the proverb, “There is a way that seems right unto man, but the end thereof is the way of death.” His own way will leave God out of the picture, so then man cannot understand his own way….. it is the Lord and His instruction book, the Holy Bible, that teaches us the steps of the Lord that we should follow  -  Keith Hunt] 


25 It is a snare for a man to devote rashly something as holy, and afterward to reconsider his vows [It is a snare to a man to utter a vow (of consecration) rashly and (not until) and afterward inquire (whether he can fulfil it) - Amplified Bible. Jesus said a man going to war must sit down and make sure he has what it will require for him to make war. If you are going to build a house, you must make sure you have the funds for the materials. If you are going on a long journey, you have to make sure you have the wherewithal to complete the journey  -  Keith Hunt]


26 A wise king sifts out the wicked, and brings the threshing wheel over them [A wise king winnows out the wicked (from among the good), and brings the threshing wheel over them (to separate the chaff from the grain) - Amplified Bible.  A wise king only wants good and wise people around him. We also should want the same thing. The company you keep will determine how you live your life. Like usually does indeed attract like; sometimes the wrong kind of people may come into your circle without you desiring it; you then have to do whatever you can to put them out of your circle  -  Keith Hunt]


27 The spirit of a man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all the inner depths of his heart [The spirit of man (the factor in human personality, which proceeds immidiately from God) is the lamp of the Lord, searching all of his innermost part (1 Cor. 2:11) - Amplified Bible. There is a spirit in man that makes him unique in all creation. It gives the brain the insight to be human, to think as a human, to ponder, to meditate, the understand as only humans can. No other creature can think and do all that humans are capable of thinking and doing. Then with God’s Spirit united with the spirit in man….. Wow, what a combination, leading all the way into eternal glory. Then man can know the depths of his own heart and some of the deep things of God. Truly the spirit in man can become the very lamp of the Lord, shining out to a dark world that they are the very sons and daughters of God  -  Keith Hunt]

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From  the  New  KJV  Study  Bible 


20:9 While this is impossible for us to do for ourselves, God wants to do it for us (see 1 Thess. 5:23, 24 and notes).

20:10 See note on 11:1.  

20:11 Deeds reflect the character within.

20:12 The faculties by which we gather understanding are gifts of God's grace (see James 1:17).

20:15 gold ... rubies: Physical and material beauty, which is worthless without wisdom. See 11:22.

20:16 Do not deal with these people unless you have ample security. They are poor risks.

20:18 The modern proverb says "Two heads are better than one."

20:19 Flattery and gossip often accompany each other.

20:20 lamp: Future heritage. Family duration depends on respect and honor (Deut. 5:16).

20:21 Gained hastily suggests acquired by deception.

20:22 Wait for the Lord: See Rom. 12:19-21 and note.

20:24 Here, understand may mean "take credit for" (see 3:5, 6 and note).

20:25 To devote rashly ... to reconsider: The importance of considering carefully the vows one would make to the Lord is illustrated clearly in the experience of Jephthah (see Judg. 11:34, 35 and note; see also note on Lev.. 27:2).

20:26 A wise leader knows the difference between right and wrong, and judges accordingly.

20:27 Lamp of the Lord: "God has given to every man a mind which He so enlightens by His own Spirit, that the man knows how to distinguish good from evil" (Clarke).

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28 Mercy and truth preserve the king, and by lovingkindness he upholds his throne [With mercy, truth, lovingkindness, a throne is established; the majority of people under normal situations will appreciate and serve under a leader who has mercy, truth, and lovingkindness. If you are in a position of rulership, governmentship, foreman of a group, you will have more respect if you govern with mercy, truth, and lovingkindness.  My father was foreman over a large number of people for many years, he had these qualities we read here, and was loved by all under him. When he retired after 36 years they all said “It just will not be the same without you Taffy” - Welshmen are called “Taffy” because of the Taff river in Wales. My father’s autobiography is on this website under “Miscellaneous Studies”  -  Keith Hunt]


29 The glory of young men is their strength, and the splendor of old men is their gray head [Ah yes, the strength of youth, there are some days I wish I had it again, but I keep as fit as I can for being 75 on 9/11 2017. Grey hair of the old should mean you’ve seen life, gone around the block a few times, done that and been there; and you should have some wisdom to pass on to the younger generation


30 Blows that hurt cleanse away evil, as do stripes the inner depths of the heart [Yes sometimes physical punishment may be needed to bring sense into some children, not always but sometimes with some children. At one time if adults went off the mark in society they were put on the “hard working chain gang” - digging ditches and the like - not beaten with a whip but hard work was their stripes, in an effort for them to see the depths of the heart, which they had allowed to bring forth evil against society  -  Keith Hunt]

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From  the  New  KJV  Study  Bible


20:28 Lovingkindness can also be translated “faithfulness” or “mercy” (see note on 19:22).

20:29 gray head: Wisdom.

20:30 Wise physical punishment has value; it is enjoined several places in Proverbs (13:24; 22:15; 23:13,14; 29:15)

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TO  BE  CONTINUED