Commentary Critical and Explanatory
on the Whole Bible
To an earnest call for attention to his teachings, the writer adds a
commendation of wisdom, preceded and enforced by the counsels of his
father and teacher. To this he adds a caution (against the devices of
the wicked), and a series of exhortations to docility, integrity, and
1, 2. (Compare
to know--in order to know.
doctrine--the matter of learning
such as he had received
3. father's son--emphatic, a son specially regarded, and so called
tender, as an object of special care (compare
1Ch 22:7; 29:1);
an idea further expressed by
only beloved--or, "as an only son"
though he had brothers (see on
4. He taught--or directed me.
retain--as well as receive.
keep . . . and live--observe, that you may live
5. Get--as a possession not to be given up.
neither decline--that is, from obeying my word.
6. Not only accept but love wisdom, who will keep thee from evil, and
evil from thee.
getting--or possession; a desire for wisdom is wise.
8. As you highly esteem her, she will raise you to honor.
embrace her--with fond affection.
9. ornament--such as the chaplet or wreath of conquerors.
The allusion to a shield, contained in the Hebrew, suggests
protection as well as honor (compare
Pr 2:1; 3:2).
11, 12. way of wisdom--which it prescribes.
led thee--literally, "caused thee to tread," as a path
not be straitened--have ample room
The figure of laying hold with the hand suggests earnest effort.
Avoid all temptations to the beginning of evil.
16, 17. The reason is found in the character of sinners, whose zeal
to do evil is forcibly depicted
They live by flagrant vices
Some prefer to render, "Their bread is wickedness, their drink
Job 15:16; 34:7).
18, 19. As shining light increases from twilight to noonday splendor,
so the course of the just increases in purity, but that of the wicked is
as thickest darkness, in which one knows not on what he stumbles.
Pr 4:10, 13;
22. health . . . flesh--by preserving from vices
destructive of health.
23. with all diligence--or, "above," or "more than all,"
custody (compare Margin), all that is kept (compare
because the heart is the depository of all wisdom and the source of
whatever affects life and character
(Mt 12:35; 15:19).
24. a froward mouth--that is, a mouth, or words of ill nature. The
Hebrew word differs from that used
(Pr 2:15; 3:32).
25. Let . . . before thee--that is, pursue a sincere and direct
purpose, avoiding temptations.
26. Ponder--Consider well; a wise course results from wise forethought.
Avoid all by-paths of evil
(De 2:27; 17:11).
A life of integrity requires attention to heart, speech, eyes, and