Proverbs 17:26

26 If imposing a fine on the innocent is not good, surely to flog honest officials is not right.

Proverbs 17:26 in Other Translations

26 Also to punish the just is not good, nor to strike princes for equity.
26 To impose a fine on a righteous man is not good, nor to strike the noble for their uprightness.
26 It is wrong to punish the godly for being good or to flog leaders for being honest.
26 It's wrong to penalize good behavior, or make good citizens pay for the crimes of others.
26 It is certainly not good to fine an innocent person, or to beat a noble for his honesty.

Proverbs 17:26 Meaning and Commentary

Proverbs 17:26

Also to punish the just [is] not good
It is evil, and an abomination to the Lord, ( Proverbs 17:15 ) . Evildoers indeed should be punished; but to punish the righteous also, as well as them, is far from being commendable; [nor] to strike princes for equity:
to strike princes, judges, civil magistrates, for doing the duty of their place and office, for doing that which is just and equitable among men, is very criminal, who ought to be encouraged and supported therein. Or it may be rendered, nor "that princes should strike for [that which is] right" F2 or cause men to be stricken, scourged, and whipped for doing well. The Targum is,

``nor to smite the righteous, who say right things;''
and so the Syriac version renders it, "righteous ones"; and the word signifies ingenuous liberal persons, good men, such as princes are or ought to be; and who should neither be stricken in the due discharge of their office, nor strike others that do well.

F2 (rvwy le Mybydn twkhl) "principes percuiere ob rectitudinem", Mercerus; "propter recta facta", Piscator, Gataker.

Proverbs 17:26 In-Context

24 A discerning person keeps wisdom in view, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth.
25 A foolish son brings grief to his father and bitterness to the mother who bore him.
26 If imposing a fine on the innocent is not good, surely to flog honest officials is not right.
27 The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered.
28 Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent, and discerning if they hold their tongues.

Cross References 1

  • 1. S Psalms 94:21; Proverbs 18:5
Scripture quoted by permission.  Quotations designated (NIV) are from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide.