Proverbs 15

Contrast the Upright and the Wicked

1 A 1gentle answer turns away wrath, But a 2harsh word stirs up anger.
2 The 3tongue of the wise makes knowledge acceptable, But the 4mouth of fools spouts folly.
3 The 5eyes of the LORD are in every place, Watching the evil and the good.
4 A soothing tongue is a tree of life, But perversion in it crushes the spirit.
5 A fool rejects his father's discipline, But he who regards reproof is sensible.
6 Great wealth is in the house of the 6righteous, But trouble is in the income of the wicked.
7 The lips of the wise spread knowledge, But the hearts of fools are not so.
8 The 7sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, But 8the prayer of the upright is His delight.
9 The way of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, But He loves one who 9pursues righteousness.
10 Grievous punishment is for him who forsakes the way; He who hates reproof will die.
11 10Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the LORD, How much * more the 11hearts of men *!
12 A 12scoffer does not love one who reproves him, He will not go to the wise.
13 A 13joyful heart makes a cheerful face, But when the heart is 14sad, the 15spirit is broken.
14 The 16mind of the intelligent seeks knowledge, But the mouth of fools feeds on folly.
15 All the days of the afflicted are bad, But a cheerful heart has a continual feast.
16 17Better is a little with the fear of the LORD Than great treasure and turmoil with it.
17 18Better is a dish of vegetables where love is Than a 19fattened ox served with hatred.
18 A 20hot-tempered man stirs up strife, But the 21slow to anger 22calms a dispute.
19 The way of the lazy is as a hedge of thorns, But the path of the upright is a highway.
20 A 23wise son makes a father glad, But a foolish man 24despises his mother.
21 Folly is joy to him who lacks sense, But a man of understanding 25walks straight.
22 Without consultation, plans are frustrated, But with many counselors they succeed.
23 A 26man has joy in an apt answer, And how delightful is a timely 27word!
24 The 28path of life leads upward for the wise That he may keep away from Sheol below.
25 The LORD will 29tear down the house of the proud, But He will 30establish the boundary of the 31widow.
26 Evil plans are an abomination to the LORD, But pleasant words are pure.
27 He who 32profits illicitly troubles his own house, But he who 33hates bribes will live.
28 The heart of the righteous 34ponders how to answer, But the 35mouth of the wicked pours out evil things.
29 The LORD is 36far from the wicked, But He 37hears the prayer of the righteous.
30 Bright eyes gladden the heart; Good news puts fat on the bones.
31 He whose ear listens to the life-giving reproof Will dwell among the wise.
32 He who 38neglects discipline 39despises himself, But he who 40listens to reproof acquires understanding.
33 The fear of the LORD is the instruction for wisdom, And before honor comes humility.

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Proverbs 15 Commentary

Chapter 15

Verse 1 A right cause will be better pleaded with meekness than with passion. Nothing stirs up anger like grievous words. Verse 2 . He that has knowledge, is to use it aright, for the good of others. Verse 3 . Secret sins, services, and sorrows, are under God's eye. This speaks comfort to saints, and terror to sinners. Verse 4 . A good tongue is healing to wounded consciences, by comforting them; to sin-sick souls, by convincing them; and it reconciles parties at variance. Verse 5 . If instruction is despised, reprove men rather than suffer them to go on undisturbed in the way to ruin. Verse 6 . The wealth of worldly men increases their fears and suspicions, adds strength to their passions, and renders the fear of death more distressing. Verse 7 . We use knowledge aright when we disperse it; but the heart of the foolish has nothing to ( proverbs 15:8-9 ) stead of Christ's atonement, or in the place of holy obedience. Praying graces are his gift, and the work of his Spirit, with which he is well pleased. Verse 10 . He that hates reproof shall perish in his sins, since he would not be parted from them. Verse 11 . There is nothing that can be hid from the eyes of God, not even man's thoughts. Verse 12 . A scorner cannot bear to reflect seriously within his own heart. Verse 13 . A gloomy, impatient, unthankful spirit, springing from pride and undue attachment to worldly objects, renders a man uneasy to himself and others. Verse 14 . A wise man seeks to gain more wisdom, growing in grace and in the knowledge of Christ. But a carnal mind rests contented, flattering itself. Verse 15 . Some are much in affliction, and of a sorrowful spirit. Such are to be pitied, prayed for, and comforted. And others serve God with gladness of heart, and it prompts their obedience, yet they should rejoice with trembling. ( proverbs 15:16-17 ) little; the Lord is with them, without the cares, troubles, and temptations which are with the wealth of the wicked. Verse 18 . He that is slow to anger, not only prevents strife, but appeases it, if kindled. Verse 19 . Those who have no heart to their work, pretend that they cannot do their work without hardship and danger. And thus many live always in doubt about their state, because always in neglect of some duty. Verse 20 . Those who treat an aged mother or a father with contempt or neglect, show their own folly. Verse 21 . Such as are truly wise, study that their thoughts, words, and actions should be regular, sincere, and holy. Verse 22 . If men will not take time and pains to deliberate, they are not likely to bring any thing to pass. Verse 23 . Wisdom is needed to suit our discourse to the occasions. Verse 24 . A good man sets his affections on things above; his way leads directly thither. Verse 25 . Pride is the ruin of multitudes. But those who are in affliction God will support. Verse 26 . The thoughts of wicked men offend Him who knows the heart. Verse 27 . The covetous man lets none of his family have rest or enjoyment. And greediness of gain often tempts to projects that bring ruin. Verse 28 . A good man is proved to be a wise man by this; he governs his tongue well. Verse 29 . God sets himself at a distance from those who set him at defiance. Verse 30 . How delightful to the humbled soul to hear the good report of salvation by the Lord Jesus Christ! Verse 31 . Faithful, friendly reproofs help spiritual life, and lead to eternal life. Verse 32 . Sinners undervalue their own souls; therefore they prefer the body before the soul, and wrong the soul to please the body. Verse 33 . The fear of the Lord will dispose us to search the Scriptures with reverence; and it will cause us to follow the leadings of the Holy Spirit. While we humbly place all our dependence on the grace of God, we are exalted in the righteousness of Christ.

Cross References 40

  • 1. Judges 8:1-3; Proverbs 15:18; Proverbs 25:15
  • 2. 1 Samuel 25:10-13
  • 3. Proverbs 15:7
  • 4. Proverbs 12:23; Proverbs 13:16; Proverbs 15:28
  • 5. 2 Chronicles 16:9; Job 31:4; Jeremiah 16:17; Zechariah 4:10; Hebrews 4:13
  • 6. Proverbs 8:21
  • 7. Proverbs 21:27; Ecclesiastes 5:1; Isaiah 1:11; Jeremiah 6:20; Micah 6:7
  • 8. Proverbs 15:29
  • 9. 1 Timothy 6:11
  • 10. Job 26:6; Psalms 139:8
  • 11. 1 Samuel 16:7; 2 Chronicles 6:30; Psalms 44:21; Acts 1:24
  • 12. Proverbs 13:1; Amos 5:10
  • 13. Proverbs 17:22
  • 14. Proverbs 12:25
  • 15. Proverbs 17:22; Proverbs 18:14
  • 16. Proverbs 18:15
  • 17. Psalms 37:16; Proverbs 16:8; Ecclesiastes 4:6; 1 Timothy 6:6
  • 18. Proverbs 17:1
  • 19. Matthew 22:4; Luke 15:23
  • 20. Proverbs 16:28; Proverbs 26:21; Proverbs 29:22
  • 21. Proverbs 14:29
  • 22. Genesis 13:8; Proverbs 16:14; Ecclesiastes 10:4
  • 23. Proverbs 10:1; Proverbs 29:3
  • 24. Proverbs 30:17
  • 25. Proverbs 14:8; Ephesians 5:15
  • 26. Proverbs 12:14
  • 27. Proverbs 25:11; Isaiah 50:4
  • 28. Proverbs 4:18
  • 29. Proverbs 12:7; Proverbs 14:11
  • 30. Deuteronomy 19:14; Proverbs 23:10
  • 31. Psalms 68:5; Psalms 146:9
  • 32. Proverbs 1:19; Proverbs 28:25; 1 Timothy 6:10
  • 33. Exodus 23:8; Deuteronomy 16:19; 1 Samuel 12:3; Isaiah 33:15
  • 34. 1 Peter 3:15
  • 35. Proverbs 10:32; Proverbs 15:2
  • 36. Psalms 18:41; Proverbs 1:28
  • 37. Psalms 145:18, 19
  • 38. Proverbs 1:7; Proverbs 8:33
  • 39. Proverbs 8:36
  • 40. Proverbs 15:5

Footnotes 21

Chapter Summary


This chapter relates Solomon's preparation for building the temple: on Hiram, king of Tyre, sending a congratulatory letter to him, he returned another to him, signifying his intention to build an house for God, and requesting him to supply him with timber, and men to work it, 1Ki 5:1-6; to which Hiram readily agreed, and sent him cedar and fir, and Solomon in return sent him food for his household; and things went on very amicably between them, 1Ki 5:7-12; the chapter concludes with an account of Solomon's workmen, where, how, and in what they were employed, 1Ki 5:13-18.

Proverbs 15 Commentaries

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