Proverbs 31:2

2 Listen, my son! Listen, son of my womb! Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!

Proverbs 31:2 in Other Translations

2 What, my son? and what, the son of my womb? and what, the son of my vows?
2 What are you doing, my son? What are you doing, son of my womb? What are you doing, son of my vows?
2 O my son, O son of my womb, O son of my vows,
2 "Oh, son of mine, what can you be thinking of! Child whom I bore! The son I dedicated to God!
2 What [should I say], my son? What, son of my womb? What, son of my vows?

Proverbs 31:2 Meaning and Commentary

Proverbs 31:2

What, my son?
&c.] What shall I call thee? though thou art a king, can I address thee in more suitable language, or use a more endearing appellative than this, and what follows? permit me, thy mother, to speak unto thee as my son: and what shall I say to thee? I want words, I want wisdom; O that I knew what to say to thee, that would be proper and profitable; or what is it I am about to say to thee? things of the greatest moment and importance, and therefore listen to me; and so the manner of speaking is designed to excite attention: or what shall I ask of thee? no part of thy kingdom, or any share in the government of it; only this favour, to avoid the sins unbecoming a prince, and to do the duty of a king, later mentioned. The Targum and Syriac version represent her as exclaiming, reproving, and threatening; as, Alas my son! is this the life thou designest to live, to give up thyself to wine and women? fie upon it, my son, is this becoming thy birth, education, and dignity? is this the fruit of all the pains I have taken in bringing thee up? consider the unbecoming part thou art acting; and what, the son of my womb?
whom I bore in sorrow, brought forth in pain, and took so much care and trouble to bring up in a religious way, and form for usefulness in church and state? not an adopted son, but my own flesh and blood; and therefore what I say must be thought to proceed from pure affection to thee, and solely for thy good; see ( Isaiah 49:15 ) ; and what, the son of my vows?
whom I asked of God, and promised to give up to him again, and did; for which reason she might call him Lemuel, as Hannah called her son Samuel, for a like reason, ( 1 Samuel 1:28 ) ; a son for whom she had put up many prayers, for his temporal and spiritual good; and on whose account she had made many vows, promises, and resolutions, that she would do so and so, should she be so happy as to bring him into the world, and bring him up to man's estate, and see him settled on the throne of Israel.

Proverbs 31:2 In-Context

1 The sayings of King Lemuel—an inspired utterance his mother taught him.
2 Listen, my son! Listen, son of my womb! Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!
3 Do not spend your strength on women, your vigor on those who ruin kings.
4 It is not for kings, Lemuel— it is not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer,
5 lest they drink and forget what has been decreed, and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.

Cross References 1

  • 1. S Judges 11:30; Isaiah 49:15
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