Whoso loveth instruction loveth knowledge: but he that hateth reproof is brutish. A good man obtaineth favour of the LORD: but a man of wicked devices will he condemn.
Is it not Christ here spoken of, who in our nature fulfilled all righteousness, and for which he obtained favour for himself and people? See the Commentary on Ps 1 and Ps 15 in confirmation.
A man shall not be established by wickedness: but the root of the righteous shall not be moved. A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones. The thoughts of the righteous are right: but the counsels of the wicked are deceit. The words of the wicked are to lie in wait for blood: but the mouth of the upright shall deliver them. The wicked are overthrown, and are not: but the house of the righteous shall stand. A man shall be commended according to his wisdom: but he that is of a perverse heart shall be despised. He that is despised, and hath a servant, is better than he that honoureth himself, and lacketh bread.
The man here said to be despised, but who hath the servant of Jehovah for his portion, is preferable to the self-righteous who is destitute of the bread of life. Isaiah 42:1; Matthew 20:27-28.
A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel. He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that followeth vain persons is void of understanding. The wicked desireth the net of evil men: but the root of the righteous yieldeth fruit. The wicked is snared by the transgression of his lips: but the just shall come out of trouble. A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth: and the recompence of a man's hands shall be rendered unto him. The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise. A fool's wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame. He that speaketh truth sheweth forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit. There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.
David gives one of the best comments upon the words, that are like the piercings of the sword. Psalms 141:5. And the apostle shews wherefore it is so. Hebrews 4:12-13.
The lip of truth shall be established forever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment. Deceit is in the heart of them that imagine evil: but to the counsellors of peace is joy. There shall no evil happen to the just: but the wicked shall be filled with mischief. Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight. A prudent man concealeth knowledge: but the heart of fools proclaimeth foolishness. The hand of the diligent shall bear rule: but the slothful shall be under tribute. Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: but a good word maketh it glad.
What but Jesus, the uncreated word, can give comfort to an heart born down under the pressure of sin? Thy love (saith the church) is better than wine; Song of Solomon 1:2. Yes! for though wine may raise the drooping spirits as a momentary cordial, yet Jesus's love raiseth the dead. Ephesians 2:1
The righteous is more excellent than his neighbour: but the way of the wicked seduceth them. The slothful man roasteth not that which he took in hunting: but the substance of a diligent man is precious. In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death.
All these are expressive of one and the same thing. The margin of the Bible renders it, The righteous is more abundant than his neighbour. Unto everyone that hath (saith our Lord) shall be given and he shall have abundance. Matthew 25:29; intimating that grace is an increasing gift from the Lord. So that while the sinner is waxing worse and worse, he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger. Job 17:9
How blessed is every portion of the divine word, when read with an eye to Christ. Wherever Christ is seen, and known, and enjoyed; there the word becomes life and spirit to the heart. I found thy words and did eat them, (saith one of the prophets) and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart. And what rendered God's word so sweet was, that Christ filled every part of it. These were the green pastures in which God caused his servant to lie down, when he fed him beside the still waters. When Christ is seen in them, and the Holy Ghost gives the soul to taste Christ in them; then as the church said, so all the people find; it is blessed to sit down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit is sweet to the taste. Reader! do you find it to be so? Have you found Christ in this chapter? Depend upon it, the grace of God, and the word of God, which bringeth salvation, brings it from this source: and it then flows in upon the soul, in rich, full, free, and blessed streams of Christ as the salvation of God for poor sinners. Oh! for grace so to find, so to enjoy, so to relish, and so to live upon Jehovah's precious gift to men. In this way of Jesus and his righteousness is life, and in the very path-way thereof, the private, as well as the public ordinances of grace, there is no death.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Proverbs 12". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week of Lent