Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Proverbs 5:16

Should your springs be dispersed abroad, Streams of water in the streets?
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Adultery;   Chastity;   Harlot (Prostitute);   Husband;   Temptation;   Women;   Young Men;   The Topic Concordance - Marriage;   Whoredom;  
Dictionaries:
Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Marriage;   Easton Bible Dictionary - River;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Street;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Ethics;   Marriage;   Peleg;   Proverbs, Book of;   Song of Solomon;   Water;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Medicine;   Proverbs, Book of;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Proverbs book of;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Fountain;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Fountain;   River;   Sealed Fountain;   Song of Songs;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Chastity;   Song of Songs, the;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad - Let thy children lawfully begotten be numerous.

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/proverbs-5.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Wedded love streams forth in blessing on all around, on children and on neighbors and ill the streets, precisely because the wife‘s true love is given to the husband only.

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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/proverbs-5.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Proverbs 5:16

Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad.

The children of marriage

Streams of children. Unlawful intercourse is often barren.

I. Children of lawful marriage are like rivers.

1. In plenty. God’s blessing goes with marriage.

2. In purity. Pure fountains bring forth pure streams.

3. In spreading abroad.

4. In profitableness.

II. Children are a great part of the comforts of marriage.

1. Because they are a part of both their parents.

2. Because they are a firm bond of love, peace, and reconciliation to both their parents.

III. Parents need not be ashamed of their children.

1. Because they come into the world God’s way, and that brings no shame with it.

2. Because there is hope that they will be good.

3. Being well-bred, they may come to preferment in the State.

4. They are likely to have honourable posterity. (Francis Taylor, B. D.)

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Proverbs 5:16". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/proverbs-5.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad,.... Or "shall abound", as the Targum; that is, streams of water from fountains; which Aben Ezra interprets of a multitude of children, namely, that are lawfully begotten: the "fountains" are the man and his wife in lawful marriage; the streams are their offspring lawfully procreated by them; which may be said to be "dispersed abroad", when being grown up they are disposed of in marriage in other families, and so become fountains to others, and public blessings;

and rivers of waters in the streets; meaning a numerous posterity as before; and such as a man is not ashamed publicly to own, whereas he is ashamed of such as are unlawfully begotten; but these are to his honour in the streets, and for public good; and particularly to those to whom they are given in marriage; see Isaiah 48:1. Jarchi interprets this of multiplying disciples, and of teaching them the law publicly, and of getting a name thereby; but it might be interpreted much better of spreading the doctrines of the Gospel, and of the public ministry and profession of that, for the good of others.

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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 5:16". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/proverbs-5.html. 1999.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad, and rivers of waters in the streets.

Fountains — Thy children proceeding from thy wife and from thyself. Fountains are here put for rivers flowing from them.

Dispersed — They shall in due time appear abroad to thy comfort, and for the good of others.

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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 5:16". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/proverbs-5.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Proverbs 5:16 Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad, [and] rivers of waters in the streets.

Ver. 16. Let thy fountains be dispersed.] "Thy fountains," that is, thy children. Let thine end in marrying be, that thou mayest have a numerous offspring, that may be as an infantry to the kingdom of heaven. Lawful marriage is usually blessed with many children; and the contrary. [Hosea 4:10] Erasmus tells of one Combe, a young woman in Euboea, that being married to one whom she liked, became mother and grandmother to a hundred children. (a) The same author tells of an Englishman, a cripple, that married a blind woman, lived very lovingly with her, and had by her twelve lusty boys, that had no defect or deformity. (b)

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/proverbs-5.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Thy fountains; thy children proceeding from thy wife, called thy fountain, Proverbs 5:18, and from thyself, as the Israelites are said to come from the fountain of Israel, Deuteronomy 33:28 Psalms 68:26. Compare Isaiah 51:1. And fountains are here put for rivers flowing from them, as it is explained in the next clause, and as it is Psalms 104:10, by a metonymy of the cause for the effect. And this title may be the more fitly given to children, because as they are rivers in respect of their parents, so when they grow up, they also become fountains to their children.

Be dispersed abroad; they shall be multiplied, and in due time appear abroad in the world to thy comfort and honour, and for the good of others; whereas whores are commonly barren, and men are ashamed to own the children of whoredom.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/proverbs-5.html. 1685.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Waters. Mayst thou have a numerous offspring, (ver. 10.) and be liberal. Many copies of the Septuagint, &c., have a negation, with Aquila, "let not thy," &c., (Calmet) though it my be read with and interrogation, "are the waters of thy fountain to be?" &c. (De Dieu) --- By not means. Origen (in Numbers xii.) acknowledges both readings. (Calmet) --- Good instructions must be given to those who are well disposed, but not to scoffers, or obstinate infidels. (Worthington) --- Husbands are exhorted to be content with their own wives, (ver. 15, 20.) so that the negative particle seems to be here wanting, as it is, chap. vi. 17., in Manuscript 60, (Kennicott) and chap. xiv. 33. (Septuagint, &c.) (Capellus)

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Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/proverbs-5.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Let thy fountains. Septuagint reads "Let not thy fountain", &c. This must be the sense from the context. The Revised Version obtains it by a question, "Should thy fountain . . . ?".

fountains. Plural of emphasis: i.e. thine own wife. Compare Song of Solomon 4:12.

And = As or nor [thy].

rivers of waters = divisions of waters. Hebrew. palgey mayim: i.e. thy garden irrigation channels in the streets. See note on Proverbs 21:1.

streets = open places.

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Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/proverbs-5.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad, and rivers of waters in the streets.

Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad, (and) rivers of waters in the streets - i:e., by being faithful to thine own wife thou shalt have an overflowing offspring from thee going forth into the streets to the various honourable duties of life (Numbers 24:7). As the wife is the well, so the children are the waters from it. An abundant progeny is a special gift from God (Psalms 127:3; Psalms 128:3 ). The promise here follows the precept in Proverbs 5:15. The reward is the result of obedience. The negative reading rests on insufficient authority, "Let not thy fountains be dispersed." As to children "in the streets" cf. Zechariah 8:5. The union of one husband to one wife tends to a numerous offspring; concubinage generally causes barrenness.

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Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/proverbs-5.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad, and rivers of waters in the streets.
thy
Deuteronomy 33:28; Psalms 68:26; Isaiah 48:21
dispersed
Genesis 24:60; Judges 12:9; Psalms 127:3; 128:3
Reciprocal: Numbers 24:7 - pour;  1 Kings 2:9 - hold him;  Isaiah 48:1 - come

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Proverbs 5:16". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/proverbs-5.html.