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Proverbs Twenty

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

Proverbs 20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.

strong drink is raging. So-called social drinking by Christians believers is difficult to justify in the context of such clear warnings as this. See also Proverbs 23:29-32.

Proverbs 20:2 The fear of a king is as the roaring of a lion: whoso provoketh him to anger sinneth against his own soul.

Proverbs 20:3 It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling.

Proverbs 20:4 The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing.

Proverbs 20:5 Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out.

Proverbs 20:6 Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?

faithful man. This verse is a striking commentary on human nature. Faithfulness is a precious jewel, but self-righteousness is common clay.

Proverbs 20:7 The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.

Proverbs 20:8 A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.

Proverbs 20:9 Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?

Proverbs 20:10 Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them are alike abomination to the LORD.

Divers weights. See note on Proverbs 16:11; also see Proverbs 11:1; 20:23.

Proverbs 20:11 Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

Even a child. It is never too early to begin training a child in right and wrong and even explaining the way of salvation.

Proverbs 20:12 The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the LORD hath made even both of them.

hath made even both. It is nonsense to think that such marvelously complex systems as eyes and ears could ever evolve by chance. The Lord alone is our Maker!

Proverbs 20:13 Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread.

Proverbs 20:14 It is naught, it is naught, saith the buyer: but when he is gone his way, then he boasteth.

Proverbs 20:15 There is gold, and a multitude of rubies: but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel.

Proverbs 20:16 Take his garment that is surety for a stranger: and take a pledge of him for a strange woman.

Proverbs 20:17 Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

Proverbs 20:18 Every purpose is established by counsel: and with good advice make war.

Proverbs 20:19 He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips.

Proverbs 20:20 Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness.

Proverbs 20:21 An inheritance may be gotten hastily at the beginning; but the end thereof shall not be blessed.

Proverbs 20:22 Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the LORD, and he shall save thee.

Proverbs 20:23 Divers weights are an abomination unto the LORD; and a false balance is not good.

Proverbs 20:24 Man's goings are of the LORD; how can a man then understand his own way?

Proverbs 20:25 It is a snare to the man who devoureth that which is holy, and after vows to make inquiry.

Proverbs 20:26 A wise king scattereth the wicked, and bringeth the wheel over them.

Proverbs 20:27 The spirit of man is the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly.

spirit of man. The human “spirit” (Hebrew neshamah) has been imparted directly to man by God Himself (Genesis 2:7), and is part of the “image of God” (Genesis 1:27). That image is severely marred by sin, but is still there, serving as God's “candle” to illuminate his thoughts and enable him to respond in saving faith to God's provision of salvation and restoration.

Proverbs 20:28 Mercy and truth preserve the king: and his throne is upholden by mercy.

Proverbs 20:29 The glory of young men is their strength: and the beauty of old men is the grey head.

Proverbs 20:30 The blueness of a wound cleanseth away evil: so do stripes the inward parts of the belly.

cleanseth away evil. The translation here is difficult, and this verse has sometimes been misused to justify heavy flogging of sinners. The essence, however, seems to be an analogy. As the infection in a wound is cleansed by the blood flowing through it, so God's chastening (or a father's chastening) will, if rightly applied, remove evil thoughts and behavior from the life.