Proverbs 25

1 Here are more of Solomon's proverbs, copied by scribes at the court of King Hezekiah of Judah.
2 We honor God for what he conceals; we honor kings for what they explain.
3 You never know what a king is thinking; his thoughts are beyond us, like the heights of the sky or the depths of the ocean.
4 Take the impurities out of silver and the artist can produce a thing of beauty.
5 Keep evil advisers away from the king and his government will be known for its justice.
6 When you stand before the king, don't try to impress him and pretend to be important. 1
7 It is better to be asked to take a higher position than to be told to give your place to someone more important.
8 Don't be too quick to go to court about something you have seen. If another witness later proves you wrong, what will you do then?
9 If you and your neighbor have a difference of opinion, settle it between yourselves and do not reveal any secrets.
10 Otherwise everyone will learn that you can't keep a secret, and you will never live down the shame.
11 An idea well-expressed is like a design of gold, set in silver.
12 A warning given by an experienced person to someone willing to listen is more valuable than gold rings or jewelry made of the finest gold.
13 A reliable messenger is refreshing to the one who sends him, like cold water in the heat of harvest time.
14 People who promise things that they never give are like clouds and wind that bring no rain.
15 Patient persuasion can break down the strongest resistance and can even convince rulers.
16 Never eat more honey than you need; too much may make you vomit.
17 Don't visit your neighbors too often; they may get tired of you and come to hate you.
18 A false accusation is as deadly as a sword, a club, or a sharp arrow.
19 Depending on an unreliable person in a crisis is like trying to chew with a loose tooth or walk with a crippled foot.
20 Singing to a person who is depressed is like taking off a person's clothes on a cold day or like rubbing salt in a wound.
21 If your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them a drink. 2
22 You will make them burn with shame, and the Lord will reward you.
23 Gossip brings anger just as surely as the north wind brings rain.
24 Better to live on the roof than share the house with a nagging wife.
25 Finally hearing good news from a distant land is like a drink of cold water when you are dry and thirsty.
26 A good person who gives in to someone who is evil reminds you of a polluted spring or a poisoned well.
27 Too much honey is bad for you, and so is trying to win too much praise.
28 If you cannot control your anger, you are as helpless as a city without walls, open to attack.

Proverbs 25 Commentary

Chapter 25

Verses 1-3 God needs not search into any thing; nothing can be hid from him. But it is the honour of rulers to search out matters, ( proverbs 25:4-5 ) to suppress vice, and reform his people, is the best way to ( proverbs 25:6-7 ) self-denial. He who has seen the glory of the Lord in Christ Jesus, will feel his own unworthiness. ( 8-10 ) . To be hasty in beginning strife, will bring into difficulties. War must at length end, and might better be prevented. It is so in private ( proverbs 25:11-12 ) word of counsel, or reproof, rightly spoken, is especially beautiful, as fine fruit becomes still more beautiful in silver baskets. Verse 13 . See what ought to be the aim of him that is trusted with any business; to be faithful. A faithful minister, Christ's messenger, should be thus acceptable to us. Verse 14 . He who pretends to have received or given that which he never had, is like the morning cloud, that disappoints those who look for rain. Verse 15 . Be patient to bear a present hurt. Be mild to speak without passion; for persuasive language is the most effectual to prevail over the hardened mind. Verse 16 . God has given us leave to use grateful things, but we are cautioned against excess. Verse 17 . We cannot be upon good terms with our neighbours, without discretion as well as sincerity. How much better a Friend is God than any other friend! The oftener we come to him, the more welcome. Verse 18 . A false testimony is dangerous in every thing. Verse 19 . Confidence in an unfaithful man is painful and vexatious; when we put any stress on him, he not only fails, but makes us feel for it. Verse 20 . We take a wrong course if we think to relieve those in sorrow by endeavoring to make them merry. (proverbs 25:21-22 ) The precept to love even our enemies is an Old Testament commandment. Our Saviour has shown his own great example in loving us when we were enemies. Verse 23 . Slanders would not be so readily spoken, if they were not readily heard. Sin, if it receives any check, becomes cowardly. Verse 24 . It is better to be alone, than to be joined to one who is a hinderance to the comfort of life. Verse 25 . Heaven is a country afar off; how refreshing is good news from thence, in the everlasting gospel, which signifies glad tidings, and in the witness of the Spirit with our spirits that we are God's children! Verse 26 . When the righteous are led into sin, it is as hurtful as if the public fountains were poisoned. Verse 27 . We must be, through grace, dead to the pleasures of sense, and also to the praises of men. Verse 28 . The man who has no command over his anger, is easily robbed of peace. Let us give up ourselves to the Lord, and pray him to put his Spirit within us, and cause us to walk in his statutes.

Cross References 2

  • 1. 25.6, 7Luke 14.8-10.
  • 2. 25.21, 22Romans 12.20.

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. [Probable text] and so . . . praise; [Hebrew unclear.]

Proverbs 25 Commentaries

Scripture taken from the Good News Translation - Second Edition, Copyright 1992 by American Bible Society. Used by Permission.