|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
16:27,28. Ungodly men bestow more pains to do mischief than would be needful to do good. The whisperer separates friends: what a hateful, but how common a character! 29,30. Some do all the mischief they can by force and violence, and are blind to the result. 31. Old people especially should be found in the way of religion and godliness. 32. To overcome our own passions, requires more steady management, than obtaining victory over an enemy. 33. All the disposal of Providence concerning our affairs, we must look upon to be the determining what we referred to God; and we must be reconciled to them accordingly. Blessed are those that give themselves up to the will of God; for he knows what is good for them.
Verse 27. - This and the three following verses are concerned with the case of the evil man. An ungodly man - a man of Belial - diggeth up evil. A man of Belial (Proverbs 6:12) is a worthless, wicked person, what the French call a vaurien. Such a one digs a pit for others (Proverbs 26:27; Psalm 7:15), devises mischief against his neighbour, plots against him by lying and slandering and overreaching. Wordsworth confines the evil to the man himself; he digs it as treasure in a mine, loves wickedness for its own sake. But analogy is against this interpretation. Septuagint, "A foolish man diggeth evils for himself." So Ecclus. 27:26, "Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein; and he that setteth a trap shall be taken therein." As the gnome says -
Ἡ δὲ κακὴ βουλὴ τῷ βουλεύσαντι κακίστη. And in his lips there is as a burning fire (Proverbs 26:23) His words scorch and injure like a devouring flame. James 3:6, "The tongue is a fire: the world of iniquity among our members is the tongue, which defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the wheel of nature, and is set on fire by hell." Septuagint, "And upon his lips he treasureth up fire."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
An ungodly man diggeth up evil,.... Or "a man of Belial" (p), a worthless unprofitable man; a man without a yoke, not obedient to the law of God; such a man digs for sin as for a treasure; nor need he go far for it, he has enough in his own heart, out of the evil treasure of which he brings forth evil things; though he is more solicitious and diligent to search into the sins of others, and dig up them, which have long lain buried; as the Manichees raked up the sins of Austin in his youth; and as the Papists served Beza: but perhaps the evil of mischief is here rather intended, which a wicked man contrives and devises; a ditch he digs for others, though oftentimes he falls into it himself; and so the Septuagint and Arabic versions render it, "digs evils for himself"; not intentionally but eventually; see Psalm 7:15;
and in his lips there is as a burning fire; his tongue is a fire, it is set on fire of hell, and it sets on fire the course of nature; and with its lies, calumnies, and detractions, devours and consumer the good names, characters, and credit of men; and deserves no other than sharp arrows of the Almighty, and coals of juniper; even the everlasting fire and flames of hell, James 3:6.
(p) "vir Belijahal", Montanus, Tigurine version, Mercerus.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
27. ungodly man—(Compare Pr 6:12).
diggeth up evil—labors for it.
in his lips … fire—His words are calumniating (Jas 3:6).
Proverbs 16:27 Parallel Commentaries
Proverbs 16:27 NIV
Proverbs 16:27 NLT
Proverbs 16:27 ESV
Proverbs 16:27 NASB
Proverbs 16:27 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible