Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Proverbs 20:8

A king who sits on the throne of justice Disperses all evil with his eyes.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Justice;   Rulers;   The Topic Concordance - Government;   Judges;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Kings;  
Dictionaries:
Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Throne;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Justice;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Pardon;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Proverbs, Book of;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Judge;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Throne;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment - Kings should see to the administration of the laws, as well as of the state transactions, of their kingdom. In the British constitution there is a court for the king, called the King's Bench, where he should sit, and where he is always supposed to be sitting. The eyes - the presence, of the monarch in such a place, scatter evil - he sees into the case himself, and gives right judgment, for he can have no self-interest. Corrupt judges, and falsifying counsellors, cannot stand before him; and the villain is too deeply struck with the majesty and state of the monarch, to face out iniquity before him.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/proverbs-20.html. 1832.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

"A king that sitteth on the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes."

The truth of this proverb hinges upon the character of the king. What is said here is true only of a wise and righteous monarch. "When a king sits on his throne to judge, he winnows out all evil with his eyes."[6]

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/proverbs-20.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment,.... That executes judgment himself, as David and Solomon did; who ascends the throne, and sits personally there, and hears and tries causes himself, and not by his servants:

scattereth away all evil with his eyes; all evil men, as the Targum; everyone that is evil, as Aben Ezra: he will easily and quickly discern who is evil, or who is in a bad cause before him, and will pass sentence on him, and drive him away from him with shame and disgrace, and to receive deserved punishment; or he will terrify persons from coming before him with false witness against their neighbour, or with a wrong cause. This may be applied to Christ, the King of kings, and Judge of all; whose eyes are as a flame of fire; who will clearly see into all hearts and actions, when he shall sit on his throne of judgment; and shall pass the righteous and definitive sentence, and shall drive the wicked into hell, into everlasting punishment.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/proverbs-20.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

A king that sitteth on the throne of judgment d scattereth away all evil with his eyes.

(d) Where righteous judgment is executed, there sin ceases, and vice dare not appear.
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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/proverbs-20.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

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

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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 20:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/proverbs-20.html. 1871-8.

Keil & Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary

The following group begins with a royal proverb, which expresses what a king does with his eyes. Two proverbs, of the seeing eye and the necessary opening of the eyes, close it.

8 A king sitting on the seat of justice,

Scattereth asunder all evil with his eyes.

Excellently the Venet . ἐπὶ θρόνου δίκης, for כּסּא־דין is the name of the seat of rectitude (the tribunal), as the “throne of grace,” Heb. 4:17, is the name of the capporeth as the seat of mercy; the seat of the judge is merely called כסא ; on the other hand, כסא־דין is the contrast of כּסּא הוּות fo, Psalms 94:20 : the seat from which the decision that is in conformity with what is right (cf. e.g., Jeremiah 5:28) goes forth, and where it is sought. As little here as at Proverbs 20:26 is there need for a characterizing adj. to melek ; but the lxx hits the meaning for it, understands such to דין : ὅταν βασιλεὺς δίκαιος καθίσῃ ἐπὶ θρόνου . By the “eyes” are we then to understand those of the mind: he sifts, dignoscit , with the eyes of the mind all that is evil, i.e., distinguishes it subjectively from that which is not evil? Thus Hitzig by a comparison of Psalms 11:4; Psalms 139:3 (where Jerome has eventilasti , the Vulg. investigasti ). Scarcely correctly, for it lies nearer to think on the eyes in the king's head ( vid ., Proverbs 16:15); in that case: to winnow (to sift) means to separate the good and the bad, but first mediately: to exclude the bad; finally, Proverbs 20:26 leads to the conclusion that מזרה is to be understood, not of a subjective, but of an actual scattering, or separating, or driving away. Thus the penetrating, fear-inspiring eyes of the king are meant, as Immanuel explains: בראיית עיניו מבריחם מפניו ומפזר אותם בכל פיאה . But in this explanation the personal rendering of כּל־רע is incorrect; for mezareh, meant of the driving asunder of persons, requires as its object a plur. (cf. 26a). Col - ra is understood as neut. like Proverbs 5:14. Before the look of a king to whom it belongs to execute righteousness and justice (Isaiah 16:5), nothing evil stands; criminal acts and devices seen through, and so also judged by these eyes, are broken up and scattered to all the winds, along with the danger that thereby threatened the community. It is the command: “put away the evil” (Deuteronomy 13:6 [5]), which the king carries into effect by the powerful influence of his look. With col - ra there is connected the thought that in the presence of the heavenly King no one is wholly free from sin.

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The Keil & Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary is a derivative of a public domain electronic edition.
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Keil, Carl Friedrich & Delitzsch, Franz. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/proverbs-20.html. 1854-1889.

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

Here is, 1. The character of a good governor: He is a king that deserves to be called so who sits in the throne, not as a throne of honour, to take his ease, and take state upon him, and oblige men to keep their distance, but as a throne of judgment, that he may do justice, give redress to the injured and punish the injurious, who makes his business his delight and loves no pleasure comparably to it, who does not devolve the whole care and trouble upon others, but takes cognizance of affairs himself and sees with his own eyes as much as may be, 1 Kings 10:9. 2. The happy effect of a good government. The presence of the prince goes far towards the putting of wickedness out of countenance; if he inspect his affairs himself, those that are employed under him will be kept in awe and restrained from doing wrong. If great men be good men, and will use their power as they may and ought, what good may they do and what evil may they prevent!

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
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Henry, Matthew. "Complete Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mhm/proverbs-20.html. 1706.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.

His eyes — With his very looks, or by his diligent inspection into affairs.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/proverbs-20.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Proverbs 20:8 A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.

Ver. 8. A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment, &c.] Kings in their own persons should sit and judge causes sometimes, to take knowledge, at least, what is done by their officers of justice: I have seen the king of Persia many times to alight from his horse, saith a late traveller, (a) only to do justice to a poor body. He punisheth theft and manslaughter so severely, that in an age a man shall hardly hear either of the one or of the other.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/proverbs-20.html. 1865-1868.

The Popular Commentary by Paul E. Kretzmann

v. 8. A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment, dispensing justice in his capacity of sovereign, scattereth away all evil with his eyes, he searches out, he sifts by winnowing, and so separates the evil from the good, the right from the wrong.

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Kretzmann, Paul E. Ph. D., D. D. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Kretzmann's Popular Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/kpc/proverbs-20.html. 1921-23.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Proverbs 20:8. A king, &c.— The wise man excites monarchs to hear causes in person, as the best means of preventing abuses, and acquiring a true state of their nation. Agreeably to this, we find Herodotus asserting, that kings were originally constituted for this very purpose. This also was Cicero's opinion, and was long before asserted by Hesiod. See Grotius and Calmet.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/proverbs-20.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment; that makes it his great care and business to execute judgment and justice among his people, especially if he do this in his own person, as was usual in ancient times, and sees things with his own eyes. As for the phrase, the sign or gesture is here put for the thing signified by it.

Scattereth away all evil, effectually punisheth and suppresseth all wickedness, with his eyes; with his very looks, or by his diligent inspection into affairs.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/proverbs-20.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

8.A king’ scattereth Searches, or winnows out. Meaning, probably, that the ruler who does his duty in his office; who acts justly, impartially, faithfully and energetically, not trusting too much to others, but as far as possible looking to the careful administration of the laws by his subordinates — will scatter iniquity as with the flash of his eye. Compare Proverbs 16:10; Isaiah 11:4 — where the same thing is predicated of a wise king.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/proverbs-20.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Proverbs 20:8. A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment — That makes it his great care and business to execute justice and judgment among his people, especially if he do this in his own person, as it was usual for kings to do in ancient times, and see things with his own eyes; scattereth away all evil — Effectually suppresses, or removes, all wickedness; with his eyes — With his very looks, or by his diligent inspection.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/proverbs-20.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Look. It is the duty of kings to administer justice.

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/proverbs-20.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

evil. Hebrew. ra"a". App-44.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/proverbs-20.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.

A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment (actively exercising judgment, and giving himself up to his royal duties-so Yahweh, Psalms 9:4) scattereth away all evil with his eyes. "Scattereth," or 'fanneth away,' as the wind separates the chaff from the wheat (Psalms 1:4; Matthew 3:12; 2 Chronicles 15:16). "With his eyes" - i:e., with his own eyes inspecting all things, and not delegating his duty to deputies. So the King of kings (Habakkuk 1:13; Psalms 5:5).

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/proverbs-20.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(8) A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment . . .—See note on Proverbs 16:12.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/proverbs-20.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.
26; 16:12; 29:14; 1 Samuel 23:3,4; 2 Samuel 23:4; Psalms 72:4; 92:9; 99:4; 101:6-8; Isaiah 32:1
Reciprocal: 2 Samuel 3:39 - I am;  1 Kings 2:36 - Shimei;  1 Kings 7:7 - of judgment;  Nehemiah 13:28 - I chased;  Job 29:8 - young men;  Psalm 101:8 - early;  Proverbs 14:35 - king's;  Proverbs 25:5 - away;  Proverbs 29:4 - king;  Proverbs 29:12 - GeneralProverbs 31:9 - GeneralIsaiah 28:6 - for a spirit;  Romans 13:4 - be

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/proverbs-20.html.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Здесь говорится

(1) о характере хорошего правителя. Это царь, заслуживающий своего титула, сидящий на престоле, но не на престоле славы, чтобы праздно проводить время, важничать, держать людей на расстоянии, а на престоле суда, чтобы вершить правосудие, компенсировать ущерб обиженным и наказывать обидчиков. Именно от этого дела он больше всего получает удовольствие. Он не перекладывает эту заботу и беспокойство на других, а лично изучает дела и убеждается в их правдивости, насколько это возможно (3Цар.10:9).

(2) О счастливом итоге хорошего царствования. Присутствие царя изгоняет нечестие; если он лично изучает дела, то его подчиненные будут хранить благоговение и ограничены в совершении зла. Если великие люди будут благочестивыми и использовать свою власть, как должно, то как много хорошего они смогут совершить и как много зла предотвратить!

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary
>
>on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mhn/proverbs-20.html. 1706.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

If great men are good men, they may do much good, and prevent very much evil.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Proverbs 20:8". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary
>
>on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mhn/proverbs-20.html. 1706.