Invitations to learn wisdom. (1-5) The arts of seducers, with warnings against them. (6-27)
Verses 1-5 We must lay up God's commandments safely. Not only, Keep them, and you shall live; but, Keep them as those that cannot live without them. Those that blame strict and careful walking as needless and too precise, consider not that the law is to be kept as the apple of the eye; indeed the law in the heart is the eye of the soul. Let the word of God dwell in us, and so be written where it will be always at hand to be read. Thus we shall be kept from the fatal effects of our own passions, and the snares of Satan. Let God's word confirm our dread of sin, and resolutions against it.
Verses 6-27 Here is an affecting example of the danger of youthful lusts. It is a history or a parable of the most instructive kind. Will any one dare to venture on temptations that lead to impurity, after Solomon has set before his eyes in so lively and plain a manner, the danger of even going near them? Then is he as the man who would dance on the edge of a lofty rock, when he has just seen another fall headlong from the same place. The misery of self-ruined sinners began in disregard to God's blessed commands. We ought daily to pray that we may be kept from running into temptation, else we invite the enemies of our souls to spread snares for us. Ever avoid the neighbourhood of vice. Beware of sins which are said to be pleasant sins. They are the more dangerous, because they most easily gain the heart, and close it against repentance. Do nothing till thou hast well considered the end of it. Were a man to live as long as Methuselah, and to spend all his days in the highest delights sin can offer, one hour of the anguish and tribulation that must follow, would far outweigh them.
Proverbs 7:1-27 . The subject continued, by a delineation of the arts of strange women, as a caution to the unwary.
1-4. Similar calls ( Proverbs 3:1-3 , 4:10 , &c.).
2. apple . . . eye--pupil of eye, a custody ( Proverbs 4:23 ) of special value.
3. Bind . . . fingers--as inscriptions on rings.
5. The design of the teaching (compare Proverbs 2:16 , 6:24 ).
6. For--or, "Since," introducing an example to illustrate the warning, which, whether a narrative or a parable, is equally pertinent.
looked--literally, "watched earnestly" ( Judges 5:28 ).
7. simple--as in Proverbs 1:4 .
void of, &c.--(Compare Proverbs 6:32 ).
8. her corner--where she was usually found.
went . . . house--implying, perhaps, confidence in himself by his manner, as denoted in the word
went--literally, "tread pompously."
9. The time, twilight, ending in darkness.
black . . . night--literally, "pupil," or, "eye," that is, middle of night.
10. attire--that of harlots was sometimes peculiar.
subtile--or, "wary," "cunning."
11, 12. loud--or, "noisy," "bustling."
without . . . streets, . . . corner--(Compare 1 Timothy 5:13 , Titus 2:5 ).
13-15. The preparations for a feast do not necessarily imply peculiar religious professions. The offerer retained part of the victim for a feast ( Leviticus 3:9 , &c.). This feast she professes was prepared for him whom she boldly addresses as one sought specially to partake of it.
16, 17. my bed--or, "couch," adorned in the costliest manner.
17. bed--a place for sleeping.
18-20. There is no fear of discovery.
20. the day appointed--perhaps, literally, "a full moon," that is, a fortnight's time (compare Proverbs 7:19 ).
21. caused . . . yield--or, "inclines."
flattering--(Compare Proverbs 5:3 ).
forced him--by persuasion overcoming his scruples.
22. straightway--quickly, either as ignorant of danger, or incapable of resistance.
23. Till--He is now caught ( Proverbs 6:26 ).
24. The inferential admonition is followed ( Proverbs 7:26 Proverbs 7:27 ), by a more general allegation of the evils of this vice.
26, 27. Even the mightiest fail to resist her deathly allurements.