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Bible Commentaries

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Proverbs 20

CHAPTER 20

:-.

Verse 1

1. mocker—scorner. Such men are made by wine.

strong drink—made by spicing wine (compare Isaiah 5:11; Isaiah 5:22); and it may include wine.

raging—or boisterous as a drunkard.

deceived—literally, "erring," or reeling.

Verse 2

2. (Compare :-). Men who resist authority injure themselves ( :-).

Verse 3

3. to cease from strife—or, better, "to dwell from or without strife," denoting the habit of life.

fool . . . meddling— (Proverbs 17:14).

Verse 4

4. shall . . . beg—literally, "ask" (in this sense, :-).

Verse 5

5. Counsel . . . water—that is, deeply hidden (Proverbs 18:4; Psalms 13:2). The wise can discern well.

Verse 6

6. Boasters are unreliable.

goodness—or, "kind disposition."

Verse 7

7. The conduct of good men proclaims their sound principles. God's covenant and their good example secure blessing to their children (Proverbs 4:26; Psalms 112:1; Psalms 112:2).

Verse 8

8. As in Proverbs 14:35; Proverbs 16:10; Proverbs 16:15, this is the character of a good king, not of all kings.

Verse 9

9. The interrogation in the affirmative strengthens the implied negation (compare Job 15:14; Ecclesiastes 7:20).

Verse 10

10. Various measures, implying that some are wrong (compare Proverbs 11:1; Proverbs 16:11).

Verse 11

11. The conduct of children even is the best test of principle (compare :-).

Verse 12

12. Hence, of course, God will know all you do (Psalms 94:9).

Verse 13

13. Activity and diligence contrasted with sloth (Proverbs 6:9; Proverbs 10:11).

lest . . . poverty—literally, "be deprived of inheritance."

Verse 14

14. when . . . his way—implying that he goes about boasting of his bargains.

Verse 15

15. The contrast denotes the greater value of knowledge (compare :-).

Verse 16

16. Take his garment—implies severe exaction, justified by the surety's rashness.

a strange woman—by some readings "strangers," but the former here, and in :-, is allowable, and strengthens the sense. The debauchee is less reliable than the merely careless.

Verse 17

17. Bread . . . sweet—either as unlawfully (Proverbs 9:17) or easily obtained.

mouth . . . gravel—well expresses the pain and grief given at last.

Verse 18

18. (Compare :-). Be careful and considerate in important plans.

Verse 19

19. Those who love to tell news will hardly keep secrets.

flattereth . . . lips—(compare Margin; :-).

meddle . . . him—literally, "join," or "associate with."

Verse 20

20. his lamp—(Compare Proverbs 13:9; Proverbs 24:20).

Verse 21

21. gotten hastily—contrary to God's providence (Proverbs 28:20), implying its unjust or easy attainment; hence the man is punished, or spends freely what he got easily (compare Proverbs 28:20- :).

Verse 22

22. (Compare Psalms 27:14; Romans 12:17-19).

Verse 23

23. (Compare Proverbs 20:10; Proverbs 11:1).

Verse 24

24. Man's goings—literally, "Stately steppings of a strong man."

a man—any common man.

understand—or, "perceive."

Verse 25

25. devoureth . . . holy—or, better, "who rashly speaks promises," or "devotes what is holy," consecrating any thing. This suits better the last clause, which expresses a similar view of the results of rashly vowing.

Verse 26

26. (Compare :-).

bringeth . . . over them—The wheel was used for threshing grain. The figure denotes severity (compare Amos 1:3).

Verse 27

27. The spirit . . . Lord—Men's minds are God's gifts, and thus able to search one another (compare Proverbs 20:5; Proverbs 18:8; Proverbs 18:17; 1 Corinthians 2:11).

Verse 28

28. (Compare Proverbs 3:3; Proverbs 16:6; Proverbs 16:12).

Verse 29

29. The glory of young men . . . the beauty of old men—Each age has its peculiar excellence ( :-).

Verse 30

30. blueness—literally, "joining," the process of uniting the edges of a wound throws off purulent matter.

stripes . . . belly—So punishment provides healing of soul ( :-), by deterring from evil courses.

Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 20". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jfb/proverbs-20.html. 1871-8.