Proverbs 22:27

27 If you have nothing with which to pay, why should your bed be taken from under you?

Proverbs 22:27 Meaning and Commentary

Proverbs 22:27

If thou hast nothing to pay
When the debtor this, and the creditor demands the debt of the surety: it is weakness in a man to be a surety for another, when he knows he is not able to pay the debt he is bound for, since it may be an injury to himself and family; but it is a piece of wickedness to engage for the payment of a debt, in case of insolvency, which he knows he is not able to answer; for this is deceiving and imposing upon the creditor; and therefore it is no wonder, being provoked by such ill usage, if he goes to extremity, as follows: why should he take away thy bed from under thee?
as in all likelihood he will, being irritated by such a conduct; and as he might, notwithstanding the law in ( Exodus 22:26 Exodus 22:27 ) ; for that respects a pledge, and not a debt; and raiment pledged, the covering of a man when in bed, and not the bed itself; for even wife and children might be taken for debt, ( 2 Kings 4:1 ) ( Matthew 18:25 ) . This is said to deter from suretyship, especially in such circumstances; since a man may bring himself into such a condition as not to have a bed to lie on; yea, to have it taken from under him when upon it; and be turned out from house and home, naked and destitute.

Proverbs 22:27 In-Context

25 or you may learn their ways and entangle yourself in a snare.
26 Do not be one of those who give pledges, who become surety for debts.
27 If you have nothing with which to pay, why should your bed be taken from under you?
28 Do not remove the ancient landmark that your ancestors set up.
29 Do you see those who are skillful in their work? They will serve kings; they will not serve common people.
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.