New International Version
Do you see someone skilled in their work? They will serve before kings; they will not serve before officials of low rank.
New Living Translation
Do you see any truly competent workers? They will serve kings rather than working for ordinary people.
English Standard Version
Do you see a man skillful in his work? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men.
New American Standard Bible
Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will stand before kings; He will not stand before obscure men.
King James Bible
Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.
Holman Christian Standard Bible
Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will stand in the presence of kings. He will not stand in the presence of unknown men.
International Standard Version
Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will work for kings, not unimportant people.
Do you see a person skilled in his work? He will take his position before kings; he will not take his position before obscure people.
Aramaic Bible in Plain English
If you have seen a man skilled in his work, he will stand before kings and he will not stand in front of obscure men.
GOD'S WORD® Translation
Do you see a person who is efficient in his work? He will serve kings. He will not serve unknown people.
JPS Tanakh 1917
Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; He shall not stand before mean men.
New American Standard 1977
Do you see a man skilled in his work?
He will stand before kings;
He will not stand before obscure men.
Parallel CommentariesMatthew Henry's Concise Commentary
22:26,27. Every man ought to be just to himself, and his family; those are not so, who, by folly or other carelessness, waste what they have. 28. We are taught not to trespass on another man's right. And it is hard to find a truly industrious man. Such a man will rise. Seest thou a man diligent in the business of religion? He is likely to excel. Let us then be diligent in God's work.
Verse 29 - A tristich follows. Seest thou a man diligent in his business! Mere diligence would not commend a man to high notice unless accompanied by dexterity and skill; and though מָהִיר (mahir) means "quick," it also has the notion of "skilful," and is better here taken in that sense. He shall stand before kings. This phrase means to serve or minister to another (Genesis 41:46; 1 Samuel 16:21, 22; 1 Kings 10:8; Job 1:6). A man thus export is fitted for any, even the highest situation, may well be employed in affairs of state, and enjoy the confidence of kings. He shall not stand before mean men. "Mean" (חְשֻׁכִּים) are the men of no importance, ignobiles, obscure. An intellectual, clever, adroit man would never he satisfied with serving such masters; his ambition is higher; he knows that he is capable of better things. Septuagint, "It must needs be that an observant (ὁρατικὸν) man, and one who is keen in his business, should attend on kings, and not attend on slothful men."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Seest thou a man diligent in his business?.... In the business of his calling, be it what it will, whether for himself or his master; constant in it, swift, ready, and expeditious at it; who industriously pursues it, cheerfully attends it, makes quick dispatch of it; does it off of hand, at once, and is not slothful in it, nor weary of it; when you have observed and taken notice of such a man, which is not very common, you may, without a spirit of prophecy, foresee that such a man will rise in the world;
he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men, or "obscure persons" (o); he shall not continue in the service of ignoble persons, or keep company with them; but he shall be taken into the service of princes and noble men, and be admitted into their presence, and receive favours from them; as Joseph, who was industrious and diligent in his business in Potiphar's house, was in process of time advanced, and stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt, Genesis 39:4. This may be spiritually applied. Every good man has a work or business to do in a religious way; some in a higher sphere, as officers of churches, ministers and deacons; the work of the one lies in reading, study, meditation, and prayer, in the ministration of the word and ordinances, and other duties of their once; and the business of the others in taking care of the poor, and the secular affairs of the churches; others in a lower way, and common to all Christians, which lies in the exercise of grace, and performance of all good works, relative to themselves, their families, and the church of God. Now ministers that are diligent in teaching and ruling; and deacons that do their office well; and private Christians, who are steadfast and immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord; are ready to every good work, heartily engaged in it, and constantly at it; shall not be company for the sons of darkness, unregenerate men, who are in the dark, and darkness itself; what communion has light with darkness, with works of darkness, they should be not workers of? or have any fellowship with the prince of darkness, from whose power they are delivered; but shall have society with the saints, who are made kings and priests unto God; shall be admitted into the presence of the King of kings now, and have communion with him; and shall stand before him at the great day with confidence, and not be ashamed; shall stand at his right hand, and shall be for ever with him. So the Jews (p) interpret this place, "he shall not stand before dark ones", in hell; "he shall stand before kings", in the garden of Eden, in paradise; that is, in heaven.
(o) "ante obscuros", Mercerus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator; "coram obscuris", Cocceius, Gejerus, Michaelis; "in conspectu obscurorum", Schultens. (p) Gloss. in T. Bab. Sanhedrin, fol. 104. 2.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
29. Success rewards diligence (Pr 10:4; 21:5).
Proverbs 22:29 Additional Commentaries
A Good Name More Desirable than Riches
…28Do not move the ancient boundary Which your fathers have set. 29Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will stand before kings; He will not stand before obscure men.
Joseph was thirty years old when he entered the service of Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from Pharaoh's presence and traveled throughout Egypt.
and the land of Egypt is before you; settle your father and your brothers in the best part of the land. Let them live in Goshen. And if you know of any among them with special ability, put them in charge of my own livestock."
1 Samuel 16:21
David came to Saul and entered his service. Saul liked him very much, and David became one of his armor-bearers.
1 Kings 10:8
How happy your people must be! How happy your officials, who continually stand before you and hear your wisdom!
1 Kings 11:28
Now Jeroboam was a man of standing, and when Solomon saw how well the young man did his work, he put him in charge of the whole labor force of the tribes of Joseph.
When you sit to dine with a ruler, note well what is before you,
Treasury of Scripture
See you a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.
he shall stand that is, he shall have the honour or serving kings; as the phrase denotes mean men.
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