Proverbs 18:15-24

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Proverbs 18

III. The Proverbs of Solomon (10:1 - 22:16)

B. Proverbs exalting righteous living (16:1 - 22:16)

15 The heart of the prudent getteth knowledge; and the ear of the wise seeketh knowledge.

16 A man's gift (i.e. offering or present) maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men. His gift could be, but is not necessarily, a bribe.

17 He that is first in his own cause (i.e. case, lawsuit) seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him. [Ryrie Study Bible - It is always wise to hear both sides of the story before making a judgment.] One side may actually be telling the truth, or both may be putting a spin on it so that they gook good, i.e. both may be lying.

18 The lot causeth contentions to cease, and parteth between the mighty. [Ryrie Study Bible - The decision by lot separates opponents and allows for harmony to be restored.]

19 A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle (i.e. a barrier to friendly relations - He has been hurt once, and he is not going to allow himself to be hurt in the same way a second time.).

20 A man's belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled. [These are two ways of saying the same thing. (Ryrie Study Bible - A man's tongue can yield satisfaction.]

21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue (One's speech is able to bring about death or life depending how it is used and what is said. Those who are prone to use the tongue must take the consequences of their words.): and they that love it (i.e. the tongue) shall eat the fruit thereof. (Peter A. Stevenson - The potential of the tongue is sobering . . . and it needs to be used with great care.)

22 Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.

23 The poor useth intreaties; but the rich answereth roughly.

24 A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly (Note that it does not say A man who would like to have friends but says A man (who has) friends must show himself friendly. This suggests that its meaning is not that the one who wants to have many friends must be friendly. Too many friends who are indiscriminately chosen will prove difficult to keep happy. One cannot please everybody.): and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. (A true friend will remain a friend regardless of the circumstances. He will always stick with you regardless of how things are going. Of course, Christ is the best friend anyone can possibly have.)