Proverbs 1:19

19 1Such are the ways of everyone who is 2greedy for unjust gain; 3it takes away the life of its possessors.

Proverbs 1:19 Meaning and Commentary

Proverbs 1:19

So [are] the ways of everyone that is greedy of gain
That is set upon getting riches in an unlawful way, by robberies and murder; his ways will end in the loss of his own blood and life, and in the loss of his immortal soul; this will be what his wicked ways and course of life will bring him to, and what will his gain profit him then? it would be of no use and service to him could he have gained the whole world; [which] taketh away the life of the owners thereof:
or who, even every one of those that are greedy of gain, and will be rich at any rate; such stick not to take away the life of the proper owners of that gain, or money they are greedy of, in order to get it into their own possession; and such wicked practices cannot fail of meeting with a just recompence of reward: or "which" covetous gain, or gain gotten in such a wicked manner, will be the cause of the life of the injurious masters and wrong possessors of it being taken away from them, either by the hand of the civil magistrate, or by God himself. These sins of robbery and murder are particularly instanced in, not only because other sins lead unto them, as sabbath breaking, drunkenness, and lewdness, and issue in temporal and eternal ruin; but because they were very common among the Jews at the time that Wisdom, or Christ, was here on earth: to which time the whole passage refers, as appears from the following verses; and that those sins were frequent then is manifest both from Scripture; see ( Matthew 27:38 ) ( Luke 10:30 ) ( 23:19 ) ; and from the confessions of the Jews, who say F26 that forty years before the destruction of the temple the sanhedrim were obliged to remove from place to place, because that murderers increased, and they could not judge and condemn them, for fear of being murdered themselves; and it was because of this great increase they were obliged to stop the beheading of the red heifer F1.


F26 T. Bab. Avodah Zarah, fol. 8. 2.
F1 Misnah Sotah, c. 9. s. 9.

Proverbs 1:19 In-Context

17 For in vain is a net spread in the sight of any bird,
18 but these men lie in wait for their own blood; they set an ambush for their own lives.
19 Such are the ways of everyone who is greedy for unjust gain; it takes away the life of its possessors.
20 Wisdom cries aloud in the street, in the markets she raises her voice;
21 at the head of the noisy streets she cries out; at the entrance of the city gates she speaks:

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