|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
10:22. That wealth which is truly desirable, has no vexation of spirit in the enjoyment; no grief for the loss; no guilt by the abuse of it. What comes from the love of God, has the grace of God for its companion. 23. Only foolish and wicked men divert themselves with doing harm to others, or tempting to sin. 24. The largest desire of eternal blessings the righteous can form, will be granted. 25. The course of prosperous sinners is like a whirlwind, which soon spends itself, and is gone. 26. As vinegar sets the teeth on edge, and as the smoke causes the eyes to smart, so the sluggard vexes his employer. 27,28. What man is he that loves life? Let him fear God, and that will secure to him life enough in this world, and eternal life in the other.
Verse 26. - Vinegar (Ruth 2:14; Psalm 69:21). As sour wine sets the teeth on edge. Septuagint, "as the unripe grape is harmful to the teeth" (Ezekiel 18:2). Smoke. In a country where chimneys were unknown, and the fuel was wood or some substance more unsavoury, the eyes must have often been painfully affected by the household fire. Thus lacrimosus, "tear-producing," is a classical epithet of smoke (see Ovid, 'Metam.,' 10:6; Her., 'Sat.,' 1:5, 80). To these two annoyances is compared the messenger who loiters on his errand. The last clause is rendered by the LXX., "So is iniquity to those who practise it" - it brings only pain and vexation.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
As vinegar to the teeth,.... Which, with its coldness and sourness, blunts the teeth, and makes it troublesome to eat: the Septuagint, Syriac, and Arabic versions, render it,
"as the sour grape is hurtful to the teeth;''
sets them on edge;
and as smoke to the eye; dims the sight, causes the eye to water, and is very pernicious and vexatious:
so is the sluggard to them that send him: that is, the slothful messenger, as the Targum explains it; who, being sent on an errand, is dilatory, does not make haste to bring back the answer; which is very vexatious to those that send him, raises their passions, makes them fretful and very angry, be it on what account it will: so slothful and unprofitable servants, to whom talents are given for usefulness, which they hide or use not, are very provoking to Christ, and whom he will order into outer darkness; those who have gifts for sacred service ought not to be slothful in business, but fervent in spirit, serving the Lord, Matthew 25:26.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
26. that is, causes vexation.
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