Proverbs 20:11
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Even small children are known by their actions, so is their conduct really pure and upright?

New Living Translation
Even children are known by the way they act, whether their conduct is pure, and whether it is right.

English Standard Version
Even a child makes himself known by his acts, by whether his conduct is pure and upright.

New American Standard Bible
It is by his deeds that a lad distinguishes himself If his conduct is pure and right.

King James Bible
Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Even a young man is known by his actions-- if his behavior is pure and upright.

International Standard Version
Even a child is known by his actions, whether his deeds are pure and right.

NET Bible
Even a young man is known by his actions, whether his activity is pure and whether it is right.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Even by his work a boy is known, if he is pure, and if his works are right.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Even a child makes himself known by his actions, whether his deeds are pure or right.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work is pure and whether it is right.

King James 2000 Bible
Even a child is known by his acts, whether his work is pure, and whether it is right.

American King James Version
Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

American Standard Version
Even a child maketh himself known by his doings, Whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

Douay-Rheims Bible
By his inclinations a child is known, if his works be clean and right.

Darby Bible Translation
Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

English Revised Version
Even a child maketh himself known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

Webster's Bible Translation
Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work is pure, and whether it is right.

World English Bible
Even a child makes himself known by his doings, whether his work is pure, and whether it is right.

Young's Literal Translation
Even by his actions a youth maketh himself known, Whether his work be pure or upright.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

20:7. A good man is not liable to uneasiness in contriving what he shall do, or in reflecting on what he has done, as those who walk in deceit. And his family fare better for his sake. 8. If great men are good men, they may do much good, and prevent very much evil. 9. Some can say, Through grace, we are cleaner than we have been; but it was the work of the Holy Spirit. 10. See the various deceits men use, of which the love of money is the root. The Lord will not bless what is thus gotten. 11. Parents should observe their children, that they may manage them accordingly. 12. All our powers and faculties are from God, and are to be employed for him. 13. Those that indulge themselves, may expect to want necessaries, which should have been gotten by honest labour. 14. Men use arts to get a good bargain, and to buy cheap; whereas a man ought to be ashamed of a fraud and a lie. 15. He that prefers true knowledge to riches, follows the ways of religion and happiness. If we really believed this truth, the word of God would be valued as it deserves, and the world would lose its tempting influence. 16. Those ruin themselves who entangle themselves in rash suretiship. Also those who are in league with abandoned women. Place no confidence in either. 17. Wealth gotten by fraud may be sweet, for the carnal mind takes pleasure in the success of wicked devices; but it will be bitter in the reflection. 18. Especially we need advice in spiritual warfare. The word and Spirit of God are the best counsellors in every point. 19. Those dearly buy their own praise, who put confidence in a man because he speaks fairly. 20. An undutiful child will become very miserable. Never let him expect any peace or comfort. 21. An estate suddenly raised, is often as suddenly ruined. 22. Wait on the Lord, attend his pleasure, and he will protect thee.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 11. - Even a child is known (maketh himself known) by his doings. (For "even" (gam), see on Proverbs 17:26.) A child is open, simple, and straightforward in his actions; he has not the reserves and concealments which men practise, so you see by his conduct what his real character and disposition are. Ewald takes מעלליו in the sense of "play," "games;" but it seems never to have this meaning, and there is no need to change the usual signification. The habits of a life are learned in early age. The boy is father of the man. Delitzsch quotes the German proverbs, "What means to become a hook bends itself early," and "What means to become a thorn sharpens itself early;" and the Aramaean, "That which will become a gourd shows itself in the bud:" Whether his work be pure ("clean," as ver. 9 and Proverbs 16:2), and whether it be right. His conduct will show thus much, end will help one to prognosticate the future. Septuagint (according to the Vatican), "In his pursuits (ἐπιήδευμασιν) a young man will be fettered in company with a holy man, and his way will be straight," which seems to mean that a good man will restrain the reckless doings of a giddy youth, and will lead him into better courses.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Even a child is known by his doings,.... As well as a man; "ye shall know them by their fruits", Matthew 7:16; professors and profane. So a child soon discovers its genius by its actions; it soon shows its inclination and disposition; and some shrewd guesses may be made how it will turn out, a wise man or a fool, a virtuous or a vicious man; though this does not always hold good, yet something may be observed, which may be a direction to parents in the education of their children, and placing them out to what is proper and suitable for them. Some observe, that the word has a quite contrary meaning, that "a child carries himself a stranger by his doings" (e); so that he is not known by them: he so conceals and disguises himself, he acts so fraudulently and deceitfully, and plays the hypocrite, and puts the cheat on men, that they cannot tell what he is, nor what he will be; and if children can thus dissemble, as not to be known by their actions, then much more grown persons;

whether his work be pure, and whether it be right; not what his present work is, or actions are, but what his later life and conversation will be; which in some measure may be judged of, though not with certainty and exactness; see Proverbs 22:6; especially when he acts a covert and deceitful part.

(e) "ignotus erit", i.e. "non facile cognoscitur", Vatablus; so R. Joseph Kimchi; "simulat se alium esse", Gussetius, p. 413. "dissimulatorem agit", Schultens.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

11. The conduct of children even is the best test of principle (compare Mt 7:16).

Proverbs 20:11 Additional Commentaries
Context
Wine is a Mocker
10Differing weights and differing measures, Both of them are abominable to the LORD. 11It is by his deeds that a lad distinguishes himself If his conduct is pure and right. 12The hearing ear and the seeing eye, The LORD has made both of them.…
Cross References
Matthew 7:16
By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?

Proverbs 20:12
Ears that hear and eyes that see-- the LORD has made them both.
Treasury of Scripture

Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

Proverbs 21:8 The way of man is fraudulent and strange: but as for the pure, his …

Proverbs 22:15 Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction …

Psalm 51:5 Behold, I was shaped in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

Psalm 58:3 The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as …

Matthew 7:16 You shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, …

Luke 1:15,66 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither …

Luke 2:46,47 And it came to pass, that after three days they found him in the …

Luke 6:43,44 For a good tree brings not forth corrupt fruit; neither does a corrupt …

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