Proverbs 24

1 Don't envy evil people, and don't long to be with them.
2 Their hearts are focused on violence, and their lips speak of trouble.
3 By wisdom a house is built; by understanding it is established.
4 By knowledge rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant wealth.
5 A wise person is mightier than a strong one; a knowledgeable person than a powerful one.
6 You should make war with guidance; victory comes with many counselors.
7 Wisdom is beyond foolish people. They don't open their mouths in the gate.
8 Those who plot evil will be called master schemers.
9 The scheming of fools is sin; people detest mockers.
10 If you show yourself weak on a day of distress, your strength is too small.
11 Rescue those being taken off to death; and from those staggering to the slaughter, don't hold back.
12 If you say, "Look, we didn't know about it," the one who weighs hearts—doesn't he understand? The one who protects your life—he knows. He makes people pay for their actions.
13 My child, eat honey, for it is good. The honeycomb is sweet in your mouth.
14 Know that wisdom is like that for your whole being. If you find it, there is a future. Your hope won't be cut off.
15 Wicked one, don't wait secretly at the home of the righteous. Don't destroy their dwelling.
16 The righteous may fall seven times but still get up, but the wicked will stumble into trouble.
17 When your enemies fall, don't rejoice. When they stumble, don't let your heart be glad,
18 or the LORD will see it and be displeased, and he will turn his anger from them.
19 Don't get fighting mad at evil people; don't be envious of the wicked.
20 Indeed, there is no future for the evil; the lamp of the wicked will be put out.
21 Fear the LORD, my child, as well as the king. Don't associate with those who are rebellious.
22 Disaster comes suddenly from them. Who can know the ruin that both can bring?

More sayings of the wise

23 These are also the sayings of the wise: Partiality in judgment isn't good.
24 Those who say to the guilty, "You are innocent"— the people will curse them. Nations will condemn them.
25 But it will go well for those who rebuke them. A rich blessing will come to them.
26 Those who speak honestly are like those who kiss on the lips.
27 Get your outside work done; make preparations in the field; then you can build your house.
28 Don't be a witness against your neighbor without reason; don't deceive with your lips.
29 Don't say, "I'll do to them what they did to me. I'll pay them back for their actions."
30 I happened upon the field of a lazy person, by the vineyard of one with no sense.
31 Thorns grew all over it; weeds covered the ground, and the stone wall was falling down.
32 I observed this and took it to heart; I saw it and learned a lesson.
33 "A little sleep, a little slumber, a little lying down with folded arms"—
34 and poverty will come on you like a prowler, deprivation like a man with a shield.

Proverbs 24 Commentary

Chapter 24

Verses 1-2 Envy not sinners. And let not a desire ever come into thy mind, Oh that I could shake off restraints! ( 3-6 ) . Piety and prudence in outward affairs, both go together to complete a wise man. By knowledge the soul is filled with the graces and comforts of the spirit, those precious and pleasant riches. The spirit is strengthened for the spiritual work and the spiritual warfare, by true wisdom. ( 7-9 ) . A weak man thinks wisdom is too high for him, therefore he will take no pains for it. It is bad to do evil, but worse to devise it. Even the first risings of sin in the heart are sin, and must be repented of. Those that strive to make others hateful, make themselves so. Verse 10 . Under troubles we are apt to despair of relief. But be of good ( proverbs 24:11-12 ) know that his neighbour is in danger by any unjust proceeding, he is bound to do all in his power to deliver him. And what is it to suffer immortal souls to perish, when our persuasions and ( proverbs 24:13-14 ) quickened to the study of wisdom by considering both the pleasure and the profit of it. All men relish things that are sweet to the palate; but many have no relish for the things that are sweet to the purified soul, and that make us wise unto ( proverbs 24:15-16 ) do, by stumbling at some stone in his path; but gets up, and goes on his way with more care and speed. This is rather to be understood of falls into affliction, than falls into actual sin. ( proverbs 24:17-18 ) ( proverbs 24:19-20 ) ( proverbs 24:21-22 ) The godly in the land, will be quiet in the land. There may be cause to change for the better, but have nothing to do with them that are given change. ( 23-26 ) . The wisdom God giveth, renders a man fit for his station. Every one who finds the benefit of the right answer, will be attached to him that gave it. Verse 27 . We must prefer necessaries before conveniences, and not go in debt. ( proverbs 24:28-29 ) ( 30-34 ) . See what a blessing the husbandman's calling is, and what a wilderness this earth would be without it. See what great difference there is in the management even of worldly affairs. Sloth and self-indulgence are the bane of all good. When we see fields overgrown with thorns and thistles, and the fences broken down, we see an emblem of the far more deplorable state of many souls. Every vile affection grows in men's hearts; yet they compose themselves to sleep. Let us show wisdom by doubling our diligence in every good thing.

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. LXX; MT A wise man is strong.

Chapter Summary


This chapter relates Rehoboam's going to Shechem to be made king, and Jeroboam's return from Egypt, 1Ki 12:1,2, the people's request to Rehoboam to be eased of their taxes, as the condition of making him king, 1Ki 12:3,4, his answer to them, after three days, having had the advice both of the old and young men, which latter he followed, and gave in a rough answer, 1Ki 12:5-15, upon which ten tribes revolted from him, and two abode by him, 1Ki 12:16-20, wherefore he meditated a war against the ten tribes, but was forbid by the Lord to engage in it, 1Ki 12:21-24 and Jeroboam, in order to establish his kingdom, and preserve the people from a revolt to the house of David, because of the temple worship at Jerusalem, devised a scheme of idolatrous worship in his own territories, 1Ki 12:25-33.

Proverbs 24 Commentaries

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