|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
29:1 If God wounds, who can heal? The word of God warns all to flee from the wrath to come, to the hope set before us in Jesus Christ. 2. The people have cause to rejoice or mourn, as their rulers are righteous or wicked. 3. Divine wisdom best keeps us from ruinous lusts. 4. The Lord Jesus is the King who will minister true judgment to the people. 5. Flatterers put men off their guard, which betrays them into foolish conduct. 6. Transgressions always end in vexations. Righteous men walk at liberty, and walk in safety. 7. This verse is applicable to compassion for the distress of the poor, and the unfeeling disregard shown by the wicked. 8. The scornful mock at things sacred and serious. Men who promote religion, which is true wisdom, turn away the wrath of God. 9. If a wise man dispute with a conceited wrangler, he will be treated with anger or ridicule; and no good is done. 10. Christ told his disciples that they should be hated of all men. The just, whom the blood-thirsty hate, gladly do any thing for their salvation.
Verse 7. - Considereth the cause; recognizes the claims, and, as the word din implies, supports them at the seat of judgment (comp. Job 29:12, 16; Psalm 82:3, etc.). Septuagint, "A righteous man knows how to judge for the poor." The wicked regardeth not to know it. This is a clumsy translation; it means, pays no attention so as to become fully acquainted with its details and bearings. But the words signify rather, as in the Revised Version margin, "understandeth not knowledge" (Proverbs 19:25; Proverbs 28:5), has no knowledge which would lead him to enter into the poor man's case, and to sympathize with him in his distress; the claims of the feeble to recognition and relief at his hands are utterly unknown and disregarded. He can daily look on Lazarus at his gate, and find no call for his pity and charity; he can see the wounded traveller in the road, and pass by on the other side. The LXX. offers two translations of the latter clause, reading the second time דשׁ instead of רשׁע, and thereby not improving the sense: "But the ungodly understand. eth not knowledge, and the poor man hath not an understanding mind."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The righteous considereth the cause of the poor,.... Not his poverty and distress, so as to relieve him, which yet he does, Psalm 41:1; nor the person of the poor in judgment, and which he ought not to do; for as he should not regard a rich man's person, and favour him, because he is rich; so neither a poor man, because he is poor, through an affectation of mercy, Leviticus 19:15; but the cause of the poor, and the justice of that, and do him justice, though a poor man. This is to be understood chiefly of a civil magistrate, a judge righteous; who will take notice of and regard a poor man's cause, and take a good deal of pains and care that he is not injured. Or, "knoweth the judgment of the poor" (m) he acquaints himself with his case, makes himself thoroughly master of it, searches out his cause as Job did, Proverbs 29:16;
but the wicked regardeth not to know it; or, "does not understand knowledge" (n) of the poor man's cause and case; and there being no money to be had, he does not care to consider it, and look into it, and get knowledge of it, and do him justice; he will not take his cause in hand, or plead it.
(m) "novit justus causan pauperum", V. L. "cognoscit", Pagninus, Tigurine version, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, &c. "novit et curat justus judicum pauperum", Michaelis; "cognoscit justus litem tenuiem", Schultens. (n) "non intellilget scientiam", Paguinus, Montanus; "intelligit", Mercerus, Piscator, Gejerus, Michaelis, Schultens.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
7. considereth—literally, "knows," as Ps 1:6.
the cause—that is, in courts of justice (compare Pr 29:14). The voluntary neglect of it by the wicked (Pr 28:27) occasions oppression.
Proverbs 29:7 Parallel Commentaries
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