|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
13:6. An honest desire to do right, preserves a man from fatal mistakes, better than a thousand fine-drawn distinctions. 7. Some who are really poor, trade and spend as if they were rich: this is sin, and will be shame, and it will end accordingly. Some that are really rich, would be thought to be poor: in this there is want of gratitude to God, want of justice and charity to others. There are many hypocrites, empty of grace, who will not be convinced of their poverty. There are many fearing Christians, who are spiritually rich, yet think themselves poor; by their doubts, and complaints, and griefs, they make themselves poor. 8. Great riches often tempt to violence against those that possess them; but the poor are free from such perils. 9. The light of the righteous is as that of the sun, which may be eclipsed and clouded, but will continue: the Spirit is their Light, he gives a fulness of joy: that of the wicked is as a lamp of their own kindling, easily put out. 10. All contentions, whether between private persons, families, churches, or nations, are begun and carried forward by pride. Disputes would be easily prevented or ended, if it were not for pride. 11. Wealth gotten by dishonesty or vice, has a secret curse, which will speedily waste it. 12. The delay of what is anxiously hoped for, is very painful to the mind; obtaining it is very pleasant. But spiritual blessings are chiefly intended.
Verse 11. - Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished; literally, wealth by a breath; i.e. wealth obtained without labour and exertion, or by illegitimate and dishonest means, is soon dissipated, is not blessed by God, and has no stability. Vulgate, "riches acquired hastily;" Septuagint, "substance gotten hastily with iniquity." This makes the antithesis more marked, the contrast being between wealth gotten hastily and that acquired by diligent labour. Cito nata, cito pereunt, "Quickly won, quickly gone" (see on Proverbs 20:21; 21:5). Says the Greek maxim -
Μὴ σπεῦδε πλουτεῖν μὴ ταχὺς πένης γένῃ
"Haste not for wealth, lest thou be quickly poor." He that gathereth by labour; literally, with the hand, handful after handful. Vulgate, paulatim, "little by little," by patient industry. Labor improbus omnia vincit. Septuagint, "He that gathereth for himself with piety shall be increased." Then is added, "A good man is merciful and lendeth," from Psalm 37:26. The Septuagint here uses the term εὐσέβεια, which is received in St. Paul's pastoral Epistles and St. Peter's, taking the place of the earlier phrase, φόβος Κυρίου,
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished,.... In an unjust or unlawful way, either by robbery and theft, as Aben Ezra; or by fraud and tricking, by overreaching and circumventing others; or by vain practices, as by cards or dice, and by stage playing and the like; or by curious and illicit arts, as necromancy, judiciary astrology, and such like things; whatever is gotten in a wicked way very seldom lasts long; it lessens by little and little till it comes to nothing (f); see Jeremiah 17:11; and sometimes very quickly and suddenly, all at once; thus that mass of riches which the church of Rome has got together by her vain and wicked practices, by her idolatry, pardons, and indulgences, will in one hour come to nought, Revelation 18:17;
but he that gathereth by labour shall increase, or "that gathereth by the hand" or "in it" (g); by hand labour in an honest way, or with the diligent hand, which maketh rich; who labours with his hand and gets by in sufficient to support himself and his family, and to give to the necessities of others; who does not lay it up in coffers, but keeps it in his hand to distribute; such generally thrive and flourish: some copies read it, "he that gathereth, unto the hand" (h), that gathers and puts it into the hands of others; that liberally communicates to the poor; he shall increase, as commonly liberal persons do; so the Targum,
"he that gathereth and giveth to the poor shall increase in substance.''
(f) "De malo quaesitis vix gaudet tertius baeres", Herat. (g) "in manu", Pagninus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator; "super manu", Gussetius, p. 310. "super manum", Michaelis, Schultens. (h) "Usque ad manum", Montantus.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. by vanity—or, "nothingness," that is, which is vain or useless to the public (as card playing or similar vices).
gathereth … labour—(Compare Margin), little by little, laboriously.
Proverbs 13:11 Parallel Commentaries
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