Proverbs 20:4
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Sluggards do not plow in season; so at harvest time they look but find nothing.

New Living Translation
Those too lazy to plow in the right season will have no food at the harvest.

English Standard Version
The sluggard does not plow in the autumn; he will seek at harvest and have nothing.

New American Standard Bible
The sluggard does not plow after the autumn, So he begs during the harvest and has nothing.

King James Bible
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
The slacker does not plow during planting season; at harvest time he looks, and there is nothing.

International Standard Version
A lazy person doesn't plow in the proper season; he looks for a harvest, but there is nothing.

NET Bible
The sluggard will not plow during the planting season, so at harvest time he looks for the crop but has nothing.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
A lazy man is reproached and does not keep silent; he begs in harvest and there is no water.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
A lazy person does not plow in the fall. He looks for something in the harvest but finds nothing.

Jubilee Bible 2000
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore he shall beg in harvest and have nothing.

King James 2000 Bible
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing.

American King James Version
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing.

American Standard Version
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the winter; Therefore he shall beg in harvest, and have nothing.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Because of the cold the sluggard would not plough: he shall beg therefore in the summer, and it shall not be given him.

Darby Bible Translation
The sluggard will not plough by reason of the winter; he shall beg in harvest, and have nothing.

English Revised Version
The slothful will not plow by reason of the winter; therefore he shall beg in harvest, and have nothing.

Webster's Bible Translation
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing.

World English Bible
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the winter; therefore he shall beg in harvest, and have nothing.

Young's Literal Translation
Because of winter the slothful plougheth not, He asketh in harvest, and there is nothing.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

20:1 It seems hard to believe that men of the greatest abilities, as well as the ignorant, should render themselves fools and madmen, merely for the taste or excitement produced by strong liquors. 2. How formidable kings are to those who provoke them! how much more foolish then is it to provoke the King of kings! 3. To engage in quarrels is the greatest folly that can be. Yield, and even give up just demands, for peace' sake. 4. He who labours and endures hardship in his seed-time for eternity, will be properly diligent as to his earthly business.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 4. - The sluggard will not plough by reason of the cold; propter frigus, Vulgate. But חֹרֶפ (choreph) denotes the time of gathering - the autumn; so we would translate, "At the time of harvest the sluggard ploughs not" - just when the ground is most easily and profitably worked. "The weakness of the coulter and other parts of the plough requires that advantage be taken, in all but the most friable soils, of the softening of the surface by the winter or spring rains; so that the peasant, if industrious, has to plough in the winter, though sluggards still shrink from its cold, and have to beg in the harvest" (Geikie, 'Holy Land and Bible,' 2:491). Therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing. So the Vulgate, Mendicabit ergo aestate, et non dabitur illi. But this does not accurately represent the meaning of the clause. If ever the prosperous are disposed to relieve the needy, it would be at the time when they have safely garnered their produce; an appeal to their charity at such a moment would not be made in vain. Rather the sentence signifies that the lazy man, having neglected to have his land ploughed at the proper time, "when he asks (for his fruits) at harvest time, there is nothing." He puts off tilling his fields day after day, or never looks to see if his labourers do their duty, and so his land is not cultivated, and he has no crop to reap when autumn comes. "By the street of By-and-by one arrives at the house of Never" (Spanish proverb). Taking a different interpretation of the word choreph, the LXX. renders, "Being reproached, the sluggard is not ashamed, no more than he who borrows corn in harvest."

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

The sluggard will not plough by reason of the cold,.... Or, "in the cold"; in the time of cold, as Aben Ezra; in the time of autumn, which is the time of ploughing, when it begins to be cold weather, and winter is drawing on: and this is discouraging to the sluggard, who does not care to take his hands out of his bosom to feed himself, and much less to plough; see Proverbs 19:24;

therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing; he shall ask of those who have ploughed and sowed, and are now reaping and gathering in their increase at harvest time; but they shall give him nothing; for such as will not work should not eat; and if a man will not plough and sow, he cannot expect to reap, nor should he be encouraged in begging. This holds good in spiritual things; such who have been slothful and sluggish about their spiritual affairs, unconcerned for the grace of God, and indolent in the use of means, or performance of duty, will ask when too late, or of wrong persons, and shall not have it; as the foolish virgins ask oil of the wise, when the bridegroom is come; and the rich man for water from Abraham, when in hell, Matthew 25:8.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

4. shall … beg—literally, "ask" (in this sense, Ps 109:10).

Proverbs 20:4 Additional Commentaries
Context
Wine is a Mocker
3Keeping away from strife is an honor for a man, But any fool will quarrel. 4The sluggard does not plow after the autumn, So he begs during the harvest and has nothing. 5A plan in the heart of a man is like deep water, But a man of understanding draws it out.…
Cross References
Proverbs 6:6
Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise!

Proverbs 13:4
A sluggard's appetite is never filled, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.

Proverbs 20:5
The purposes of a person's heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out.

Proverbs 21:25
The craving of a sluggard will be the death of him, because his hands refuse to work.
Treasury of Scripture

The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing.

sluggard

Proverbs 10:4 He becomes poor that deals with a slack hand: but the hand of the …

Proverbs 19:15,24 Slothfulness casts into a deep sleep; and an idle soul shall suffer hunger…

Proverbs 26:13-16 The slothful man said, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets…

cold

Proverbs 6:10,11 Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep…

Proverbs 19:15 Slothfulness casts into a deep sleep; and an idle soul shall suffer hunger.

Proverbs 24:34 So shall your poverty come as one that travels; and your want as an armed man.

Matthew 25:3-10,24-28 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them…

2 Peter 1:5-11 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; …

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