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Quietness, Inheritance and Refining
The contrast in Proverbs 17:1, rendered in a “better … than” construction, is simple and understandable. The wise will agree that poverty with peace is better than prosperity with strive (cf. Proverbs 15:16-Esther :). He prefers “quietness”, while there is no more than “a dry morsel” to satisfy the hunger, above “strife” with an abundance of food. The “dry morsel” is bread without anything that makes it easier and tastier to swallow it (cf. Ruth 2:14; John 13:26).
A sober meal “and quietness with it” means that those who participate in it, find satisfaction in the fellowship with God and with one another. In that way the sober meal becomes a festive meal. That is better than “a house full of feasting” whereby those who participate in it, are in conflict with one another. In that way the festive meal is immersed in bitterness. Abundance often comes together with a decrease of values and standards, with the result of an increase of jealousy and quarrel.
Here it looks like it is about offering animals, which were brought in the temple, God’s house, as peace offerings and of which those who brought the offerings were allowed to eat a portion together with others (Leviticus 3:1-Esther :; Leviticus 7:28-Nahum :). To have strife while eating the peace offering, is in contrast with its character. In the church at Corinth, such a situation happened. The believers felt themselves to be spiritually rich, but there was division among them. Paul admonishes them about it (1 Corinthians 11:17-Nahum :).
The proverb in Proverbs 17:2 is about “a servant who acts wisely” and who in the service for his lord takes well advantage of all his capacities. The behavior of the servant stands against the behavior of the son of that particular lord. The son is living a wicked life. His father is ashamed of it. He disinherits his son and instead he makes the servant to become fellow-heir of the brothers, which means that he adopts him as son. In that way the servant gets a place above the disinherited son, with the result that he rules over the son.
It is an encouragement to all who are faithful in their work. Faithfulness is rewarded with a position of ruling and the sharing of the inheritance of the family. One who serves in humility, is placed above one who has a certain position, but behaves himself unworthy of that position.
The first line of Proverbs 17:3 makes clear what the intention is of the second line of the verse. As silver and gold are heated in “the refining pot” and in “the furnace”, in order to refine precious metals more and more, the LORD tests the hearts (Malachi 3:2-Numbers :; 1 Peter 1:6-Judges :; cf. Isaiah 48:10; Zechariah 13:9). God examines every thought and every motive. Those examinations and tests are always for the increase of the value of him who is being refined.
By the heat of trials God wants to purify the hearts of His own from everything that stands in the way to make Christ visible. The godly person himself also asks God to do that to him (Psalms 26:2). In that mind we are able to eat the peace offering with quietness (Proverbs 17:1) and are we worthy of being heirs (Proverbs 17:2).
Listening to Lies Leads to Mockery
“An evildoer” and “a liar” love to listen to lies and destructive talk (Proverbs 17:4; cf. Jeremiah 5:30-Obadiah :). The point here is that those who listen to such talk are like those who make this kind of talk to be heard. The “lips” and the “tongue” indicate speech; the qualifications “wicked” and “destructive” say that this speech causes destructions.
The people who listen to gossip are as guilty as those who tell them. If there were no listeners, there wouldn’t be gossip. Listeners of gossip help to maintain gossip. That’s how it works with gossip magazines. If there were no buyers, there wouldn’t be gossip magazines. The buyers of the gossip magazines are just as much gossipers as the authors and publishers of them.
What about us? Do we also enjoy the programs in which lies and deception are presented as entertainment and in that way are glorified? If we continue to watch them and do not turn away from them, we become like those people who are called here evildoer and liar.
The mocking of the poor happens because a calamity happened to him, which caused him to become poor (Proverbs 17:5). That appears from the second line of the verse. Everyone who mocks the poor, taunts his Maker and therefore will be punished. After all, man is made in His picture (Genesis 1:26-Daniel :; James 3:5). The second line of the verse explains that such a person “will not go unpunished”, but will be punished.
The mockery at the poor expresses itself in malicious delight about the calamity that has happened to him. One can be happy about the misery that strikes another person. The taunting of the Maker can be seen as disparaging comments towards God, with the meaning that He couldn’t keep the poor one that is involved, from that calamity. Besides God being taunted, also the poor bears the brunt of it. The mocker enjoys that the poor has ended up in trouble. He rubs salt into the many wounds of the poor by telling him that he owes his own failures to himself.
The Edomites did have malicious delight about the calamity that happened to Israel. The prophet Obadiah shows that they would not go unpunished. God promises that He would surely punish the Edomites (Obadiah 1:12-Nehemiah :). The same goes for Ammon (Ezekiel 25:6-Judges :). Job said that he was free from such an attitude (Job 31:29). How is our response to the calamity of someone, especially of someone we dislike?
Honor the Generations
It is an honor to a man when as long as he lives, he sees children and grandchildren who serve their own generation in a way according to God’s will (Psalms 128:6; Genesis 50:23; cf. Acts 13:36). When generations will appreciate one another and pursue the good, there will be harmony. There is an emphasis on the responsibility of (grand)parents for their (grand)children. The following generation is reminded of looking back to the previous generations.
In what is said here, the ideal situation is presented. We know that the world is full of headstrong parents and rebellious children who cannot look back to a happy youth. But for each new generation it is a challenge to break that tendency. This verse is a stimulus to focus on that.
Children can make sure that their children will remember them as godly parents and their parents as godly grandparents. The children will not be ashamed of their parents and grandparents, but on the contrary testify that they are very grateful to have such a "crown". This in its turn can have the result that the children of their children will go in the way of the Lord. The line of children and children’s children, the generation line downward, is the glory of the old age, the line of parents and grandparents, the generation line upward, is the crown of their children or their descendants.
Two Things That Do Not Fit Together
The teaching of this verse is that, as we do not expect excellent speech from the mouth of fools, we surely do not expect lying lips from a dignitary (prince). When a fool speaks excellent things, it is like a flag on a broomstick. Normally he vomits the greatest foolishness and suddenly he makes beautiful statements. Then it will be like ‘a strange sound’ in our ears. It makes us think of the proverb ‘beware of the geese, when the fox preaches’, which means that when a cunning man comes with nice words, he is up to something. His words do not agree with his nature.
Conversely it means that a false word is not fitting to a dignitary. It is not fitting to such a person to speak words which hurt others. With a dignitary is meant a leader or a monarch, someone with a certain status and whom people trust. To his status the code of honor of truthfulness is fitting and not a false word. Lies are just not fitting to him.
Bribes Bring Prosperity Everywhere
The meaning is that “a bribe” works like a magic stone, which causes “its owners” to be successful with their plans and prosperous wherever they go. The word ‘bribe’ which is used here, is another word than the word ‘charity’ which is also ‘a charm’, but used to indicate an unselfish gift. Therefore it is right to say bribe here, for that is what is meant. We speak about ‘bribes’ or ‘a slush fund’.
“A charm” is very attractive to the one to whom the owner of the stone presents it, in such a way that he cannot resist to accept the charm and give the giver in return whatever he wants. There goes a spell from it to the recipient, which causes to melt away all resistance. A bribe opens doors which otherwise would remain closed, as if a magical statement has been made.
The proverb shows the effect of a bribe without a comment. It is not a recommendation to make use of bribes. The law clearly prohibits us to accept bribes (Exodus 23:8). What Solomon says is the reality from the point of view of someone who gives the bribe: this is the way it works. It is a charm which brings luck, a charm that has magical features and works as a spell. It is a ‘lucky stone’.
Conceal Against Repeat
This proverb is about the contrast between “he who conceals a transgression” and “he who repeats a matter”, by telling it to another person. The first encourages “love” and the second “separates intimate friends”. Friendship demands the capability of concealing, forgiving and forgetting a transgression. When that does not happen, it will end the best friendships. Repeating a matter of the past and to focus on it has destroyed a lot of friendships and marriages.
The true friend will bury the wrongs instead of campaigning about a matter to whoever wants to hear about it. To repeat is an activity that destroys love and confidence, which destroys what it deserves to preserve. To conceal does not mean that a transgression is made silent or ignored, but that is not talked about with others, that it is not spread.
“Love covers a multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8). Every child of God has experienced it, for through the love of the Lord Jesus, which He has shown on the cross at Golgotha, his sins are covered. They do not exist anymore to God. That does not mean that God overlooks them, but that He forgives them and conceals them when there is remorse and repentance. The concealing of the transgression happens after the confession, after which God forgives. In following Him we can act like that when someone transgresses against us (Ephesians 4:32; Ephesians 5:1-Exodus :).
If Discipline Does Not Work, Judgment Will Follow
The covering of a transgression (Proverbs 17:9) does not mean that the transgression is not exposed. This happens by confronting the transgressor with his transgression, to rebuke him for it. “One who has understanding” will profit from the rebuke, but the fool will not (Proverbs 17:10).
This verse contrasts the one who has understanding and the fool in their response to a rebuke. He who has understanding and is humiliated by a rebuke will learn from it. But even “a hundred blows” will have no effect on a fool. Blows may come down to his back, but they will not change his heart; he remains to be a fool.
The difference between one who has understanding and a fool becomes especially clear by the way in which one responds to a rebuke. The rebuke that Peter received, both from the Lord Jesus and from Paul (Matthew 16:23; Galatians 2:11-Ezra :), went deeper into him. It did not result in a grudge, but he learnt from it. But the many severe plagues that came over Egypt did not cause Pharaoh to change his mind (Exo 7-12). He remained to be a fool and got killed in his foolishness.
“A rebellious man” (Proverbs 17:11) is fully insensible to discipline. He lives in rebellion against God and his fellow man. As a devoted follower of the great rebel against God, the devil, he seeks to cause turmoil and uproar. He seeks nothing else than “the evil”; he deliberately seeks it.
This rebel will be visited by “a cruel messenger” who is especially sent to him to kill him. It is a matter of cause and result. Rebellious people have no other goal than searching for the evil. The result of it is that revenge is sent in the form of a cruel messenger. This expression may refer to a cruel messenger that the king sends; it can also refer to storms, an illness, or an accident as God’s messenger of revenge.
Benaiah was a messenger that was sent to kill the adversaries of David and Solomon (1 Kings 2:13-1 Corinthians :). Someone who only seeks evil will not open himself to something good. Therefore he has to be dealt with in this way.
Warnings Against Foolishness
It is more dangerous to encounter a fool who is involved with foolishness than “a bear robbed of her cubs” (Proverbs 17:12). The one who is assumed to be intelligent and rational, is more dangerous in his foolishness than the bear that acts after her instinct (2 Samuel 17:8; Hosea 13:8). The fool is totally blind for his foolishness and acts in stupid blindness. The lesson is: do not come near that bear and certainly not near a fool.
We often underestimate the enormous danger of foolishness. Foolishness is the exclusion of God. It means that the warnings of God are considered to be jokes, like the sons-in-law of Lot did (Genesis 19:14). That brings a man in a much greater danger than whatever danger. One knows what to expect from a bear, but that is often not so from a fool.
Adam is the first to whom Proverbs 17:13 is fully applied. He has returned evil for all God’s kindness. Due to that evil came over his house, which means it has come over his entire offspring, which till now has not departed from his house. The evil only departs, when it is confessed. Then the reverse happens: God returns good for evil to everyone who believes.
The verse is generally to be applied to every individual who returns evil for good, also to the believer, without saying whether God allows the evil to come over him again directly or that He does that at another time. David experienced that Saul had returned evil for the good that he had done to him. Nabal did the same towards David. But David himself also did return evil for good when he let Uriah to be murdered, while Uriah served him with a total devotion. Therefore the evil did not depart from his house (2 Samuel 12:9-2 Kings :).
Above all, the Jews have returned the Lord Jesus evil for good. We hear that when He says: “Thus they have repaid me evil for good and hatred for my love” (Psalms 109:5; Psalms 35:12). As a result of that the evil has not departed from the house of Judah. The Lord has told His disciples – with that He tells us also – that they, just as He did, ought to act the other way around: “But love your enemies and do good” (Luke 6:35). In this context an exhortation is also applied to us: “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21).
Conflicts are to be stopped before they break out. That is what this proverb is telling us. The picture is that of a small leak, for example in a dam, through which water starts to flow gradually. If we do not do something quickly, the leak will become bigger and becomes a great hole. The disaster that follows will have unforeseeable consequences. We can apply this to a conflict that must be solved, because it otherwise can turn out into a court case. When one goes to the court, it may lead to a legal victory, but at the same time the conflict gets a permanent and unrecoverable character.
A conflict often starts with a small thing. If one does not solve it directly and rightly, it can lead to a war. The best thing is to stop yourself and do not say anything back. If both parties insist on their right, it will break out. It is like a small spark that causes an enormous fire if the spark is not extinguished. At the beginning of the church there was a disagreement between two groups of widows. Before it became a real conflict, the twelve apostles stopped this disagreement by taking a wise decision (Acts 6:1-Joshua :).
God Hates the Distortion of Right
In the administration of justice it is important that justice is done, which means that the wicked is condemned and the righteous is justified. If that is reversed and the judge “justifies the wicked” and “condemns the righteous”, then both the one and the other “are an abomination to the LORD” (cf. Isaiah 5:20). The clearest and most horrible illustration of this proverb we see in the ‘court case’ against the Lord Jesus. Pilate justified the wicked Barabbas and condemned the Righteous to be guilty (Matthew 27:24-Ezekiel :).
The great miracle of the grace of God is that the first line of the verse applies to God Himself. The epistle to the Romans shows this line of the verse from God’s side on the ground of the work of Christ. God justifies the wicked on the basis of righteousness. He has made the Righteous to be sentenced with the punishment of the wicked, through which He can make us righteous: “But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness” (Romans 4:5).
A Fool Has No Sense
A fool is a fool because he does not look for God, while that is of first importance to become wise. The fool has no interest to gain wisdom in the way it should be gained. Money has no value at all in this case; it doesn’t count, for money cannot buy what is needed the most – which is a relationship with God. He may want to have the reputation of the wise, but he is not able to fulfill the requirements that belong to the wise, for he lacks the sense, the spiritual understanding for it. Simon the magician, who desired to buy the gift of the Holy Spirit, was such a fool (Acts 8:18-Psalms :).
There is amazement and indignation in the question. In fact it is said that it is of no use that there is a price in the hand of a fool to buy wisdom, for he has no sense. He would not recognize wisdom at all when he would see it.
The love of a real friend is permanent. His love does not change when circumstances do. He is a friend in prosperity and in adversity, in good times and in times when the friendship is put to the test. Christ shows that He is such a friend Who always under all circumstances loves (John 13:1). He calls us His “friends” (John 15:14-Ezra :). He also calls us “brothers” (John 20:17; Hebrews 2:11-2 Kings :). Besides, there is no Scripture that tells us that His followers call Him ‘friend’ or ‘brother’. Therefore we should not call Him so. He is exalted far above us.
Friendship means that thoughts are being shared. Friends are there for one another and always help each other (Luke 11:5-Ruth :). A brother is a blood relative. There is a family relationship. Ruth and Naomi and also David and Jonathan show what friendship and family relatedness means in practice, especially in times of adversity.
It is perfectly true of the Lord Jesus, Who shares His thoughts with us as a friend, and Who as a brother to us, supports us in heaven in our troubles, which He is familiar with from His own experience. That a brother is born for adversity, means that we can call on Him, precisely when we face “adversity”.
Only a Fool Becomes Guarantor
It is foolish to become guarantor to a person who has got himself into debt (cf. Proverbs 6:1-Deuteronomy :). “To pledge” means that one has promised something to another. It is like signing for an agreement by which the promise is confirmed. One who becomes guarantor, is “a man lacking in sense”. For you never know what may happen to you. The debt may be that great, that it is unpayable.
What the Lord Jesus did when He became guarantor may from a human point of view seem to be like ‘lacking sense’, but of course it was not. He knew as a matter of fact, how high the price was and He knew that He was able to pay it. It reminds us of the statement in the epistle to Philemon where the apostle Paul as a real follower of the Lord Jesus, also becomes guarantor of Onesimus (Philemon 1:18) towards Philemon.
To Love Strife Comes From a Crooked Mind
We may “get caught in a transgression” (Galatians 6:1) without loving that transgression. Someone else can then restore us. But “he who loves transgression” (Proverbs 17:19), has a depraved spirit. His performance shows that he loves strife. A transgression has consequences for interrelationships. He who loves to transgress has a preference for strife. Through his depraved talk he continually puts good relationships under pressure.
The meaning of “he who raises his door” is not entirely clear. In the context of the use of this expression, the door seems to represent ‘the mouth’ here. The meaning may then be ‘having a big mouth’ (cf. 1 Samuel 2:3; Psalms 141:3; Micah 7:5). He who loves strife, has a big mouth towards heaven, towards God, and to his neighbor too (Psalms 73:8-1 Samuel :). He does not seek prosperity for the other, but “destruction”.
Proverbs 17:20 shows the origin of Proverbs 17:19. He who loves strife, shows that he “has a crooked mind”. He who has a crooked mind does not only seek the destruction of others, but he himself “finds no good”. With the “good” the blessings of God are meant which He gives to everyone who serves Him. The one with the crooked mind seeks what is good in his own sight. He strives for possession at the expense of others.
He is “perverted in his language”, the words that he speaks are perverse. He speaks falsity, which shows that he hates the truth. He strives for the fall of others, but he himself will fall into evil and cause his own destruction. Instead of finding the real good he gets to be confronted with a life full of calamities. The prosperity that he is searching for himself, leads to his destruction.
The Sorrow of a Father
It is a sorrow for a father to sire a child that appears to be a fool. He had hoped for having a son who would be a gain to the family and the faith, but he only finds disappointment when his son appears to be a fool. A godly father will not rejoice in his foolish son. The father “was seeking a godly offspring” (Malachi 2:15), but his son appears to be from the devil. He has brought his son up “in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4), so that he would live to God’s honor, but he rejected all teaching of his father. The father will not rejoice in his son, but the foolishness of his son will break his heart.
One knows not what kind of child he or she has sired. Therefore it is so important to pray before a child is sired, so that God may give a child that will live to His glorification. Still, godly parents can have ungodly children. It remains to be a choice that a child itself has to make as soon as it is ready: for or against Christ.
We cannot always blame parents for the choice that children make and parents cannot make a claim upon their children to be godly. Actually, parents are responsible for the education, to fully commit themselves for making their child to learn to know Him. Thereby they will be an example for their child about how to go that way. Whether the child will go that way, is a choice it will have to make by itself.
A Joyful Heart or a Broken Spirit
“A joyful heart” is a heart that rejoices in God and the things of God. A person gets a joyful heart when the peace of God dwells in it. Due to that it will be “good medicine” to body and spirit. One who has “a broken spirit”, will experience the contrary. There is no mention of joy. That has disappeared by all kinds of worries and miseries that he suffers. This process “dries up the bones”. Like it is said earlier, bones strengthen the body to make it move. When the bones have been dried up, it means that the health has disappeared and that powerlessness has begun (cf. Ezekiel 37:1-2 Chronicles :).
This verse is not a judgment of someone who is depressed. The intention of it is not that he should be happy, so that depression will disappear. What is generally true is also presented here, without any judgment about one’s condition. Someone who is depressed knows that a joyful heart is good medicine. The problem is that he does not have a joyful heart. He will not get a joyful heart by just telling him again and again that he should have one. Such a person needs another approach. What is primarily needed, is understanding and patience. Let him who has got to do with such a situation ask the Lord for wisdom.
The Intention of a Bribe
Bribery corrupts justice. He who allows himself to be bribed, is “a wicked man”. It seems to regard the influencing of a judicial decision, for it mentions “to pervert the ways of justice”, or to keep justice to be done in the normal way. Not only that justice is being kept to have its course, but it is turned into injustice, while the appearances of justice is being kept up. The fact that a judge accepts this bribe “from the bosom” proves that it happens in secret. It is a secret transaction, not a pure one. A corrupt judge is a wicked man.
Perverting the way of justice may also happen in work situations. One can bribe his employee with a present to silence him about a criminal offense that he has committed. The same can happen within a family and in God’s church. The bribery does not have to consist of money. It may also consist of a promotion or presents or preferential treatment.
What One Pays Attention To
“One who has understanding” perseveres in following the course of wisdom. He always seeks wisdom as a compass. That’s what he is looking at and determines his route through life. He concentrates on wisdom, because he understands the real problems of life and knows that only wisdom can lead him concerning these problems and through these problems. One who has understanding knows what it is to have a ‘clear eye’ (Matthew 6:22; Luke 11:34), which means that he focused on only one object, through which he continues to follow the right path.
The fool lacks any serious concentration. He is not able to focus his attention firmly on something. Because he has no understanding, his eyes roam all through the whole world, but they find no place of rest anywhere. He is like a student who does not hear what his teacher says, because his eyes go around all over the classroom. In that way he does not note the teaching of the wisdom teacher.
The eyes are the window of the soul. What is observed with the eyes, has an impact on the soul. Man has become a sinner by seeing, desiring and taking. With television and the internet, it is possible to focus the eyes “on the ends of the earth”. That also happens massively. People let themselves to be led by what they see on the media and remain because of that blind for wisdom, which is Christ, “in Whom all treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden” (Colossians 2:3). Therefore they will remain foolish and will perish in their foolishness, unless they start to seek wisdom from Above.
The one who has understanding will focus uninterruptedly “on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, Who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:2).
Grief to the Father and Bitterness to the Mother
It is a great grief to have a child that develops to be a fool (Proverbs 17:21). Here the emphasis is on the son who grieves his father in that way and becomes bitterness to his mother, who “bore him”. The joy with which the birth has been announced has turned into grief. The joy of the birth after the pain of deliverance has changed into bitterness by the way that the foolish son goes.
A foolish son not only does wrong to his own soul, is not only rebellious against God, but shows the greatest possible ingratitude towards his parents. His mother has given birth to him with pain and then educated him. His father has taught him wise lessons about life. But he rejects all of that. His greatest foolishness is that he remains indifferent about what he does to his father and mother.
The father and the mother share the pain of the way that their foolish son goes. In that way they can understand and comfort one another and pray together to the Lord about their need. That prevents them to start to blame one another. They can also help each other to deal with this very difficult situation. The mother can help the father to deal with his anger, the father can help the mother not to succumb to their sorrow. Sometimes the reverse happens.
Do Not Punish an Innocent Man
This is again a proverb that deals with the evil of dishonest legal practices. Everyone will agree that it is “not good to fine the righteous” with the unrighteous, for he has done nothing that justifies that. When that still happens, it shows how dilapidated our society is. People do not consider God, Who has ordained the legal order.
It is still worse to “strike the noble for [their] uprightness”. In this case the law has dilapidated in such a way that people who are righteous, are being tortured physically, precisely for their uprightness. The noble are people who want to defend justice. That should deserve appreciation, but it is being punished. In this kind of time we live. Uprightness means to live according to God’s Word. Those who want that, have to deal with an increasing opposition.
To the righteous and the noble who are being fined and who have to suffer because they hold fast to God’s Word, it applies that they suffer for uprightness or righteousness. They are called “blessed” (1 Peter 3:14). “For it is better, if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong” (1 Peter 3:17).
The Control of the Tongue
The first line of Proverbs 17:27 is about restraining the tongue not to say thoughtless and untimely things. It says literally that he ‘saves his words’. He who does that, seems to have “knowledge”. The second line of the verse deals with self-control, literally ‘a cool spirit’. That is the opposite of being hot-tempered. “He who has a cool spirit” will not lose patience and will not get hot-tempered during a discussion. We learn that if we want to have rest, calmness, self-control and cautiousness, we have to develop knowledge and understanding.
The wise man has a source of knowledge in himself. That knowledge is acquired by him because he is wise. That he has that knowledge now, means that he is wise and knows what he should and especially what he should not say. He will not boast on his knowledge and will be a man of few words. He is patient and waits until it is God’s time to say something.
Keeping silent is a sigh of wisdom (Proverbs 17:28). Even a fool seems wise and is considered wise when he keeps silent, meaning by those who do not know him. In any case he hides his foolishness by keeping silent. When this applies to the fool, how much more does it apply to the wise whose keeping silent shows that he is a wise. Of course the fool does not become wise; he only hides his foolishness. The fool may keep silent and give the impression that he is wise, but God knows his heart and also the wise will not let himself to be deceived.
Kingcomments on the Whole Bible © 2021 Author: G. de Koning. All rights reserved. Used with the permission of the author
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de Koning, Ger. Commentaar op Proverbs 17". "Kingcomments on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week after Epiphany