Proverbs 17:27

27 The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered.

Proverbs 17:27 in Other Translations

King James Version (KJV)
27 He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit.
English Standard Version (ESV)
27 Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.
New Living Translation (NLT)
27 A truly wise person uses few words; a person with understanding is even-tempered.
The Message Bible (MSG)
27 The one who knows much says little; an understanding person remains calm.
American Standard Version (ASV)
27 He that spareth his words hath knowledge; And he that is of a cool spirit is a man of understanding.
GOD'S WORD Translation (GW)
27 Whoever has knowledge controls his words, and a person who has understanding is even-tempered.
Holman Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
27 The intelligent person restrains his words, and one who keeps a cool head is a man of understanding.
New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
27 Anyone who has knowledge controls his words. A man who has understanding is not easily upset.

Proverbs 17:27 Meaning and Commentary

Proverbs 17:27

He that hath knowledge spareth his words
Or, "he that knows knowledge" F3; one that is very knowing, has a fund of knowledge in him, "spareth his words"; is generally a man of few words, he thinks much and says little; and though he may be communicative of his knowledge to proper persons, and at proper times, yet never speaks of it in a boasting and ostentatious way: or, he "restrains his words" {d}; he puts a bridle on them; and suffers not himself to speak hastily and angrily, and in a reproachful manner, when he is provoked to it; [and] a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit;
here is a various reading; the "Cetib" is (rqw) , "of a cool spirit" F5; in opposition to a warm fiery spirit; such as was that of the apostles, who were for calling for fire from heaven on those that slighted their master, and, as he told them, knew not what spirits they were of; but a cool spirit is one that is not soon angry, calm, sedate, and not easily provoked to wrath: the "Keri", or marginal reading, is (rqy) , "of an excellent" or "precious spirit" F6; and such an one is a right spirit; a spirit of faith and love, and of a sound mind; and of such a spirit is a man of understanding in things divine and spiritual; to have a spirit of prayer, and to be tenderhearted, and of a sympathizing and forgiving spirit, is to be of an excellent spirit. The Targum is,

``humble in spirit;''
and a meek and quiet spirit is in the sight of God of great price; the Lord has a great regard to such who are of an humble and contrite spirit: with these he dwells, to these he gives more grace; these are like to Christ, and have the fruits of his Spirit, and are very useful and ornamental. The Septuagint, Syriac, and Arabic versions render it, "patient" or "longsuffering"; and to be of a patient spirit is to be of an excellent spirit: such bear afflictions and reproaches quietly; wait God's own time for hearing and helping them, and live in the comfortable expectation of heaven and happiness; and such show themselves to be wise and understanding men.

F3 (ted edwy) "qui scit scientiam", Pagninus, Vatablus, Mercerus.
F4 (wyrma Kvwx) "qui cohibet sermones suos", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.
F5 (xwr rqw) "frigidus spiritu", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Cocceius.
F6 (xwr rqy) "pretiosus spiritu", Pagninus, Montanus, Mercerus, Gejerus, Baynus.

Proverbs 17:27 In-Context

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 2

  • 1. S Job 6:24
  • 2. S Proverbs 14:29; James 1:19
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