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BOAST not for to morrow, for thou knowest not what the day to come may bring forth. 2 Let another praise thee, and not thy own mouth: a stranger, and not thy own lips.

Ver. 2.  Lips.  All hate affectation and vanity.  Jo. v. 51.


3 A stone is heavy, and sand weighty: but the anger of a fool is heavier than them both.

Ver. 3.  Both.  He is insupportable to himself and to others.  Eccli. xxii. 17.



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4 Anger hath no mercy, nor fury when it breaketh forth: and who can bear the violence of one provoked?

Ver. 4.  And who.  Sept. "but envy (zeal) beareth nothing."  The more we yield to the envious, the more he is offended at our good behaviour.


5 Open rebuke is better than hidden love.

Ver. 5.  Love.  Which can be of no service to us, while reproof may cause us to amend.


6 Better are the wounds of a friend, than the deceitful kisses of an enemy.

Ver. 6.  Enemy.  Joab slew Amasa, while he kissed him.  2 K. xx. 9.  Matt. xxvi. 48.  True friendship is not attentive to outward appearances.


7 A soul that is full shall tread upon the honeycomb: and a soul that is hungry shall take even bitter for sweet.

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8 As a bird that wandereth from her nest, so is a man that leaveth his place.

Ver. 8.  Place, or vocation, like the prodigal son, Lu. xv.  The Israelites were much attached to their own country, where they might practise the true religion.  C.


9 Ointment and perfumes rejoice the heart: and the good counsels of a friend are sweet to the soul.

Ver. 9.  And.  Sept. add, "wine and incense...but accidents tear the soul."  H.


10 Thy own friend, and thy father's friend forsake not: and go not into thy brother's house in the day of thy affliction. Better is a neighbour that is near, than a brother afar off.

Ver. 10.  Affliction.  He will be less compassionate than a tried friend.

 

--- Better, &c.  This daily experience evinces.  "Those who purchase land, should consider if there be plenty of water, and a neighbour."  Pliny xviii. 5.

 

--- The Persians honour most those who live nearest to them.  Herod. i. 134.


11 Study wisdom, my son, and make my heart joyful, that thou mayst give an answer to him that reproacheth.

Ver. 11.  Thou.  Heb. Complut. and Sixtus V. "I may," &c.  Sept. "and cast reproaches from thee."


12 The prudent man seeing evil hideth himself: little ones passing on have suffered losses.
13 Take away his garment that hath been surety for a stranger: and take from him a pledge for strangers.

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14 He that blesseth his neighbour with a loud voice, rising in the night, shall be like to him that curseth.

Ver. 14.  In the night.  Or "early in the morning," de nocte, as the Heb. implies.

 

--- Curseth.  His importunity will be equally displeasing.  H.

 

--- Flattery is dangerous, (C.) and unworthy of a free man.  Cic. de Amic.


15 Roofs dropping through in a cold day, and a contentious woman are alike.

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16 He that retaineth her, is as he that would hold the wind, and shall call in the oil of his right hand.

Ver. 16.  Hand.  As it will flow away, such as woman is commonly incorrigible.  C.


17 Iron sharpeneth iron, so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.

Ver. 17.  Sharpeneth.  Or instructeth.  Fungar vice cotis.  Hor. Art.


18 He that keepeth the fig tree, shall eat the fruit thereof: and he that is the keeper of his master, shall be glorified.

Ver. 18.  Glorified.  He who serves his master well shall be promoted.


19 As the faces of them that look therein, shine in the water, so the hearts of men are laid open to the wise.

Ver. 19.  Are.  Heb. "to men."  Our hearts have all something similar.  C.

 

--- Sept. "as faces are not like each other, so neither are the hearts of men."  They have all come peculiarity.  H.

 

--- But this agrees not with the original.


20 Hell and destruction are never filled: so the eyes of men are never satisfied.

Ver. 20.  Destruction.  Heb. abaddo, or abadon.  C. xv. 11.  Apoc. ix. 11.  People die, and are plunged in hell daily.

 

--- Eyes.  Avarice and ambition.  Eccli. xiv. 9.



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21 As silver is tried in the fining-pot and gold in the furnace: so a man is tried by the mouth of him that praiseth. The heart of the wicked seeketh after evils, but the righteous heart seeketh after knowledge.

Ver. 21.  Praiseth.  If he be not puffed up, or if all agree in his praises, we may conclude that they are well founded.

 

--- The, &c. is not in Heb. Comp. S. Jer. or Chal. and destroys the connection.



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22 Though thou shouldst bray a fool in the mortar, as when a pestle striketh upon sodden barley, his folly would not be taken from him.

Ver. 22.  Mortar.  Such were used by those who could not afford handmills.  C.


23 Be diligent to know the countenance of thy cattle, and consider thy own flocks:

Ver. 23.  Flocks.  Jo. x. 3.  Eccli. vii. 24.  This may be applied to pastors.


24 For thou shalt not always have power: but a crown shall be given to generation and generation.

Ver. 24.  Generation.  Thou wilt be cited as an example of prudence, if thou hast forseen the change of thy affairs, and provided for it.  In the east it was not unusual to see a general of an army reduced to the meanest condition, and economy is necessary for all.


25 The meadows are open, and the green herbs have appeared, and the hay is gathered out of the mountains. 26 Lambs are for thy clothing: and kids for the price of the field.

Ver. 26.  Field.  If thou wishest to purchase, or to pay the workmen.



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27 Let the milk of the goats be enough for thy food, and for the necessities of thy house, and for maintenance for thy handmaids.

Ver. 27.  Milk.  We cannot but admire such frugality.  Sept. are rather different.  C. v. 25, "Be careful of the grass of thy field...that thou mayst have lambs for thy clothing.  Honour the field, that there may be lambs for thee.  27  Son, thou hast from me solid instructions for thy life, and for that of thy servants."  H.


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