|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
29:19. Here is an unprofitable, slothful, wicked servant; one that serves not from conscience, or love, but from fear. 20. When a man is self-conceited, rash, and given to wrangling, there is more hope of the ignorant and profligate. 21. Good usage to a servant does not mean indulgence, which would ruin even a child. The body is a servant to the soul; those that humour it, and are over-tender of it, will find it forget its place. 22. An angry, passionate disposition makes men provoking to one another, and provoking to God. 23. Only those who humble themselves shall be exalted and established. 24. The receiver is as bad as the thief. 25. Many are ashamed to own Christ now; and he will not own them in the day of judgment. But he that trusts in the Lord will be saved from this snare.
Verse 24. - Whoso is partner with a thief hateth his own soul. The accomplice of a thief puts his own safety in danger. This is explained by what follows: He heareth cursing, and bewrayeth it not; better, he heareth the adjuration, and telleth not. This refers to the course of proceeding defined by Leviticus 5:1, and intimated in Judges 17:2. When a theft was committed, the person wronged or the judge pronounced an imprecation on the thief and on any one who was privy to the crime, and refrained from giving information; a witness who saw and knew of it, and was silent under this formal adjuration, has to bear his iniquity; he is not only an accomplice of a criminal, he is also a perjurer; one sin leads to another. Some commentators explain the first hemistich as referring only to the crime of receiving or using stolen goods, by which a man commits a crime and exposes himself to punishment; but it is best taken, as above, in connection with the second clause, and as elucidated thereby.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Whoso is partner with a thief,.... That robs and steals, and raises away another man's property; which to do is sinful and contrary to the law of God, and punishable by it; and so it is to join with him in the theft, or to devise, or consent unto it; or to receive the stolen goods, or to hide and conceal them; or to hide the thief, or the theft, and not declare them; see Psalm 50:18. Such an one
hateth his own soul; that is, he is not careful of it, he is not concerned for its welfare as he should be; for otherwise no man, properly speaking, hates his own flesh or body, and much less his soul; but he is negligent of the good of it, and, for the sake of the mammon of unrighteousness, runs the risk of the ruin of it; by which he shows that he loves the world more than his own soul; when the profit of the whole world is nothing to the soul of man, Matthew 16:26; see Proverbs 8:36;
he heareth cursing, and bewrayeth it not; or "does not declare it" (b); he heareth the cursing of those that have lost their goods, and yet he does not declare where they are, and who is the author of the theft, though he knows; or, being suspected of being concerned in it, or, at least, of knowing who did it, be is had before a civil magistrate, and an oath is given him, which he takes, and yet he conceals the matter: which is an aggravation of his sin, and brings ruin to his soul. So the Targum,
"an oath is determined (or brought to him) and he confesseth not.''
Some understand this of a distinct evil, of hearing cursing and swearing, and taking the name of God in vain, and blasphemy against him; yet, through fear of incurring the displeasure of men, and being reckoned a busy body, or through indifference and want of zeal for the glory of God, do not discover it, or inform of it, to a proper person, for the punishment of such; see Leviticus 5:1; and render the words (c), as "he that is partner with a thief hateth his own soul; so he that heareth cursing, and betrayeth it not."
(b) "et non indicat", Junius & Tremellius, Mercerus, Cocceius, Schultens, Michaelis. (c) So Gejerus.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
24. hateth … soul—(Compare Pr 8:36).
heareth cursing—(Le 5:1), risks the punishment, rather than reveal truth.
Proverbs 29:24 Parallel Commentaries
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