|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
25:1-3 God needs not search into any thing; nothing can be hid from him. But it is the honour of rulers to search out matters, to bring to light hidden works of darkness. 4,5. For a prince to suppress vice, and reform his people, is the best way to support his government. 6,7. Religion teaches us humility and self-denial. He who has seen the glory of the Lord in Christ Jesus, will feel his own unworthiness. 8-10. To be hasty in beginning strife, will bring into difficulties. War must at length end, and might better be prevented. It is so in private quarrels; do all thou canst to settle the matter. 11,12. A word of counsel, or reproof, rightly spoken, is especially beautiful, as fine fruit becomes still more beautiful in silver baskets. 13. See what ought to be the aim of him that is trusted with any business; to be faithful. A faithful minister, Christ's messenger, should be thus acceptable to us. 14. He who pretends to have received or given that which he never had, is like the morning cloud, that disappoints those who look for rain. 15. Be patient to bear a present hurt. Be mild to speak without passion; for persuasive language is the most effectual to prevail over the hardened mind. 16. God has given us leave to use grateful things, but we are cautioned against excess.
Verse 10. - Lest he that heareth it put thee to shame; i.e. lest any one, not the offended neighbour only, who hears how treacherous you have been, makes your proceeding known and cries shame upon you. And thine infamy turn not away. The stigma attached to you be never obliterated. Thus Siracides: "Whoso discovereth secrets loseth his credit; and shall never find friend to his mind. Love thy friend, and be faithful unto him: but if thou bewrayest his secrets, follow no more after him. For as a man hath destroyed his enemy; so hast thou lost the love of thy neighbour" (Ecclus. 27:16, etc.; comp. also 22:22). The motive presented in our text is not the highest, being grounded on the fear of shame and disgrace in men's eyes; but it is a very potent incentive to right action, and the moralist has good reason for employing it. That it does not reach to the height of Christian morality is obvious. The gnome is thus given in the Greek: "When thy friend shall reproach thee, retreat backward, despise him not, lest thy friend reproach thee still; and so thy quarrel and enmity shall not pass away, but shall be to thee like death." Then the LXX. adds a paragraph, reproduced partly by St. Jerome, "Kindness and friendship set a man free (ἐλευθεροῖ); preserve thou these, that thou become not liable to reproach (ἐπονείδισοτς, exprobabilis); but guard thy ways in a conciliating spirit (εὐσυναλλάκτως)."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Lest he that heareth it put thee to shame,.... Or, "reproach thee" (c) with treachery and deceit. Either the person of whom it is told, or the person to whom it is told; who may make thee ashamed, either by fixing the odious character of a defamer, a whisperer, and backbiter, on thee; or by making a retaliation, and in his turn make known some secret things concerning thyself, which before were not known, and, now published, will be to thy disgrace;
and thine infamy turn not away; it shall stick so close to thee, that thou shalt never get clear of it as long as thou livest, or ever retrieve thy credit; the brand of infamy shall ever be upon thee.
(c) "probris afficiat te", Pagniuus, Montanus, Mercerus, Gejerus; "probro afficiet te", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Michaelis.
Proverbs 25:10 Parallel Commentaries
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