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Bible Commentaries
Proverbs 20

Peake's Commentary on the BiblePeake's Commentary

Verses 1-30

Proverbs 20. We have still further traces in Proverbs 20:9; Proverbs 20:24 of the sceptical spirit and “ the obstinate questionings of self” characteristic of the later Greek period of Jewish thought.

Proverbs 20:6 a. RV is strained and the Heb. is difficult. Read ( cf. Syr. and Lat.) “ Many a man is called kind.”

Proverbs 20:8 . winnoweth ( mg.) is more literal than RV, and conveys better the idea of personal scrutiny ( cf. the ideal king in Psalms 72 and Isaiah 11).

Proverbs 20:9 . For the growing sense of personal sin as distinct from national responsibility and guilt cf. Job 14:4; Job 15:14; Psalms 51:5.

Proverbs 20:10 f. The LXX places Proverbs 20:10 after Proverbs 20:22; this makes it possible that “ even” in Proverbs 20:11 is a continuation of Proverbs 20:9. The repetition of “ pure” supports this.

Proverbs 20:12 . cf. Exodus 4:11.

Proverbs 20:14 . It is naught: lit. “ bad, bad,” the buyer’ s depreciation of the object he is bargaining for.

Proverbs 20:15 . Probably the three forms of precious possessions mentioned are all to be taken in apposition to “ lips of wisdom.”

Proverbs 20:17 b. cf. Lamentations 3:16.

Proverbs 20:20 . blackest darkness: lit. “ the pupil (of the eye) of darkness,” so in Proverbs 7:9. For the thought cf. Proverbs 30:17. The reference is probably not to the legal penalty of the early codes ( Exodus 21:17).

Proverbs 20:22 . cf. Proverbs 24:29. The Jewish quietist attitude of non-resistance reflected in our Lord’ s saying in Matthew 5:39, grew up in the Hasid movement ( Psalms 4:3 *) in the time of Antiochus Epiphanes.

Proverbs 20:24 . cf. Jeremiah 10:23. The passage seems rather to reflect the growing sense of the antinomy between the belief in predestination and freewill.

Proverbs 20:25 . Very doubtful; rashly to say and to make inquiry are both uncertain. The former may be supported from Job 6:3. The LXX probably conveys the general sense: “ It is a snare for a man hastily to consecrate any of his property, for after vowing comes repentance” ( cf. Deuteronomy 23:21-23, Ecclesiastes 5:4-6).

Proverbs 20:26 . cf. Proverbs 20:8 and Isaiah 28:27 f., where the processes of threshing are described.

Proverbs 20:27 stands alone in the OT in its expression of the Divine element in man as conscience.

Bibliographical Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Proverbs 20". "Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/pfc/proverbs-20.html. 1919.
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