in man--or literally, "to man," belonging, or pertaining to him.
the answer . . . Lord--The efficient ordering is from God: "Man proposes; God disposes."
3. (Compare Margin). Rely on God for success to your lawful purposes.
4. for himself--"for its answer," or "purpose," that is, according to God's plan; the wicked are for the day of evil ( Psalms 49:5 , Jeremiah 17:18 ); sinning and suffering answer to each other, are indissolubly united.
5. (Compare Proverbs 3:32 ).
6. By mercy and truth--that is, God's ( Psalms 85:10 ); He effects the atonement, or covering of sin; and the principles of true piety incline men to depart from evil; or, "mercy" and "truth" may be man's, indicative of the gracious tempers which work instrumentally in procuring pardon.
purged--expiated (as in Leviticus 16:33 , Isaiah 27:9 , Hebrew).
7. Persecutions, of course, excepted.
9. (Compare Proverbs 16:3 ).
10. The last clause depends on the first, expressing the importance of equity in decisions, so authoritative.
11. are the Lord's . . . his work--that is, what He has ordered, and hence should be observed by men.
12. Rulers are rightly expected, by their position, to hate evil; for their power is sustained by righteousness.
13. A specification of the general sentiment of Proverbs 16:12 .
14. This wrath, so terrible and certain, like messengers of death ( 1 Kings 2:25 ), can be appeased by the wise.
15. light of . . . countenance--favor ( Psalms 4:6 ).
life--preserves it, or gives blessings which make it valuable.
the latter rain--fell just before harvest and matured the crop; hence specially valuable ( Deuteronomy 11:14 ).
17. The highway--A common, plain road represents the habitual course of the righteous in departing from evil.
18, 19. (Compare Proverbs 15:33 ). Haughtiness and pride imply self-confidence which produces carelessness, and hence
a fall--literally, "sliding."
19. divide the spoil--that is, conquer. Avoid the society of the proud ( James 4:6 ).
21. wise in heart--who rightly consider duty.
sweetness of the lips--eloquent discourse, persuades and instructs others.
22. Understanding--or, "discretion," is a constant source of blessing ( Proverbs 13:14 ), benefiting others; but fools' best efforts are folly.
23. The heart is the source of wisdom flowing from the mouth.
24. (Compare Proverbs 15:26 ). Gentle, kind words, by soothing the mind, give the body health.
25. (Compare Proverbs 14:2 ).
26. Diligence is a duty due to one's self, for his wants require labor.
32. (Compare Proverbs 14:29 ).
taketh a city--that is, by fighting.
33. Seemingly the most fortuitous events are ordered by God.