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John Wesley's Explanatory Notes
on the Whole Bible

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Chapter 3

Chapter Overview

An exhortation to be steadily religious, verse 1-4.
To trust God, verse 5, 6.
To fear him, verse 7, 8.
To honour him with our substance, verse 9, 10.
To bear affliction well, verse 11-12.
The praise of wisdom, verse 13-20.
The good effects of adhering to it, verse 21-26.
Caution, against uncharitableness, strife, envy; if we would avoid a curse and inherit a blessing, verse 27-35.

Verse 1
My law - The law of God, which might be called his law, as the gospel is called Paul's gospel, 2 Timothy 2:8, because delivered by him.

Verse 3
Mercy - Mercy denotes all benignity, charity, and readiness to do good to others: truth or faithfulness respects all those duties which we owe to God or man, which we have special obligation from the rules of justice. Bind them - Like a chain, wherewith persons adorn their necks. Table - In thy mind and heart, in which all God's commands are to be received and engraven.

Verse 4
Understanding - Whereby to know thy duty, and to discern between good and evil. Of God - Grace or favour with God, and that understanding which is good in God's sight.

Verse 5
Trust - Wholly rely upon God's promises and providences. Lean not - Under this one kind of carnal confidence, he understands all other confidence in bodily strength, wealth, or friends.

Verse 8
Navel - To thy body, which is signified by one part of it. Marrow - Which is the nourishment and strength of the bones.

Verse 9
Substance - Lay out thy estate not to please thyself, but to glorify God. First-fruits - Or, with the chief or best; which answers to the first-fruits under the law.

Verse 10
So - This is not the way to diminish thy estate, but rather to increase it.

Verse 11
Despise not - Either by making light of it, or not being duly affected with it; or by accounting it an unnecessary thing: but rather esteem it a privilege and favour from God. Weary - Neither think it tedious or hard, but endure it with patience and chearfulness.

Verse 13
Findeth - Which supposes his diligent searching for it.

Verse 17
Peace - Procure a blessed tranquility in a man's mind and conscience.

Verse 18
A tree - A pledge of everlasting life. He alludes to the tree of life, and intimates, that this is the only restorer of that life which we have lost by sin.

Verse 19
Wisdom - Either by Christ, or by that Divine perfection of wisdom, which is the fountain of wisdom in man.

Verse 20
The depths - That great abyss contained in the bowels of the earth, breaks forth into fountains and rivers.

Verse 21
Eyes - The eyes of thy mind. Constantly and seriously meditate upon them.

Verse 22
Grace - Like a beautiful chain or ornament.

Verse 25
Be not - Thou shalt not be afraid. Sudden - For sudden and unexpected evils are most frightful. And fear is here put for the evils feared. Desolation - Which cometh upon the wicked.

Verse 26
Shall be - A sure ground of confidence to thee. Taken - In the snares either of sin or mischief.

Verse 27
With-hold not - Do not deny it, but readily and chearfuly impart it. Good - Any thing which is good, either counsel, comfort, reproof, or the good things of the present life. Due - That is, to all men, by that great and sovereign law of love.

Verse 28
Say not - The former verse forbad the denial, and this forbids the delay of this duty.

Verse 29
Securely - Relying upon thine integrity.

Verse 31
Envy not - For his impunity and success.

Verse 32
Abomination - Therefore sooner or later he must be miserable. The righteous - They are God's friends, to whom he imparts the favours and comforts to which other men are strangers.

Verse 33
The house - Not only upon his own person, but also upon his posterity.

Verse 35
Shame - Instead of that glory which they seek.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 3". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes
on the Whole Bible". <http://classic.studylight.org/com/wen/view.cgi?book=pr&chapter=003>. 1765.  

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