Proverbs 30:17
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"The eye that mocks a father, that scorns an aged mother, will be pecked out by the ravens of the valley, will be eaten by the vultures.

New Living Translation
The eye that mocks a father and despises a mother's instructions will be plucked out by ravens of the valley and eaten by vultures.

English Standard Version
The eye that mocks a father and scorns to obey a mother will be picked out by the ravens of the valley and eaten by the vultures.

New American Standard Bible
The eye that mocks a father And scorns a mother, The ravens of the valley will pick it out, And the young eagles will eat it.

King James Bible
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
As for the eye that ridicules a father and despises obedience to a mother, may ravens of the valley pluck it out and young vultures eat it.

International Standard Version
The eye that mocks a father and looks with a disobedient attitude at a mother— the valley ravens will pluck it out; and vultures will eat it.

NET Bible
The eye that mocks at a father and despises obeying a mother--the ravens of the valley will peck it out and the young vultures will eat it.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Ravens of the valley will tear out the eye that laughs at its father and despises the old age of its mother, and the young Eagles will eat it.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
The eye that makes fun of a father and hates to obey a mother will be plucked out by ravens in the valley and eaten by young vultures.

Jubilee Bible 2000
The eye that mocks at his father, and despises the teaching of his mother, the ravens shall pluck it out of the river, and the young eagles shall eat it.

King James 2000 Bible
The eye that mocks at his father, and despises to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young vultures shall eat it.

American King James Version
The eye that mocks at his father, and despises to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

American Standard Version
The eye that mocketh at his father, And despiseth to obey his mother, The ravens of the valley shall pick it out, And the young eagles shall eat it.

Douay-Rheims Bible
The eye that mocketh at his father, and that despiseth the labour of his mother in bearing him, let the ravens of the brooks pick it out, and the young eagles eat it.

Darby Bible Translation
The eye that mocketh at a father, and despiseth to obey a mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

English Revised Version
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

Webster's Bible Translation
The eye that mocketh at its father, and despiseth to obey its mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

World English Bible
"The eye that mocks at his father, and scorns obedience to his mother: the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, the young eagles shall eat it.

Young's Literal Translation
An eye that mocketh at a father, And despiseth to obey a mother, Dig it out do ravens of the valley, And eat it do young eagles.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

30:10 Slander not a servant to his master, accuse him not in small matters, to make mischief. 11-14. In every age there are monsters of ingratitude who ill-treat their parents. Many persuade themselves they are holy persons, whose hearts are full of sin, and who practise secret wickedness. There are others whose lofty pride is manifest. There have also been cruel monsters in every age. 15-17. Cruelty and covetousness are two daughters of the horseleech, that still cry, Give, give, and they are continually uneasy to themselves. Four things never are satisfied, to which these devourers are compared. Those are never rich that are always coveting. And many who have come to a bad end, have owned that their wicked courses began by despising their parents' authority. 18-20. Four things cannot be fully known. The kingdom of nature is full of marvels. The fourth is a mystery of iniquity; the cursed arts by which a vile seducer gains the affections of a female; and the arts which a vile woman uses to conceal her wickedness. 21-23 Four sorts of persons are very troublesome. Men of low origin and base spirit, who, getting authority, become tyrants. Foolish and violent men indulging in excesses. A woman of a contentious spirit and vicious habits. A servant who has obtained undue influence. Let those whom Providence has advanced from low beginnings, carefully watch against that sin which most easily besets them.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 17. - This is an independent proverb, only connected with the preceding by being founded on an allusion to an animal. The eye that mocketh at his father. The eye is named as the mind's instrument for expressing scorn and insubordination; it is the index to the inner feeling; and look may be as sinful as action. And despiseth to obey his mother; i.e. holds obedience to his mother to be a thing of no importance whatever. The word translated "to obey" (ליקהת) is rendered by St. Jerome partum; by others, "weakness," or "wrinkles," or "old age," as Septuagint, γῆρας. But etymology has led most modern commentators to give the sense of "obedience" (see Genesis 49:10). The ravens of the valley shall pick it out. Such an undutiful son shall die a violent death; his corpse shall lie unburied, and the birds of prey shall feed upon him. It is well known that ravens, vultures, and other birds that live on carrion first attack the eyes of their prey; and in our own islands we are told crows and birds of this sort will fix on the eyes of young or sickly animals. Corn. a Lapide quotes Catullus, 'Carm.,' 108:5 -

"Effossos oculos voret atro gutture corvus,
Intestina canes, cetera membra lupi."


"His eyes, plucked out, let croaking ravens gorge,
His bowels dogs, his limbs the greedy wolves."
The valley, or brook, reminds one of Elijah's miraculous support (1 Kings 17:4). Young eagles. The nesher must here mean one of the vulture tribe, as eagles do not feed on carrion (but see Job 39:30). St. Gregory ('Moral.,' 18:49) applies the proverb thus: "'The eye that sneereth at his father, and despiseth the travail of his mother, lo! the ravens from the torrents shall pick it out.' For bad men, while they find limit with the judgments of God, do 'sneer at their Father;' and heretics of all sorts, whilst in mocking they contemn the preaching of holy Church and her fruitfulness, what else is this but that they 'despise the travail of their mother'? whom we not unjustly call the mother of them as well, because from the same they come forth, who speak against the same."

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

The eye that mocketh at his father,.... At his advice, admonitions, and instructions; looks upon him with scorn and disdain, and treats him as a weak, silly, old man: here Agur returns to the first generation he had observed;

and despiseth to obey his mother; her orders and commands: or, "the obedience of his mother" (s); her discipline and instruction, having no regard to it. The word is rendered "gathering" in Genesis 49:10; and Jarchi interprets it of the gathering of wrinkles in her face: and so the Targum, Arabic, and Syriac versions render it, "the old age of his mother"; despising her as an old foolish woman; see Proverbs 23:22; in the Ethiopic language, signifies to "grow old", from whence the word here used, by a transposition of letters, may be derived; and Mr. Castell (t) observes, that the royal prophet, among others, seems to have taken this word from the queen of Sheba;

the ravens of the valley, shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it; it signifies, that such persons shall come to an untimely end, and an ignominious death; either be drowned in a river, when floating upon it, or cast upon the banks of it, the ravens that frequent such places, and are most cruel and voracious, should feed upon them: or they should be hanged on a tree, or be crucified (u), where birds of prey would light upon them; and particularly pick out their eyes and eat them, as being softest and sweetest to them; therefore first aim at them, and of which birds, and especially ravens, are very fond (w); and is a just retaliation for their scornful and disdainful looks at their parent. This may figuratively design the black devils of hell, the posse of them in the air, who are sometimes compared to the fowls thereof; to whom such unnatural and disobedient children shall become a prey; see Matthew 13:4.

(s) "obediantiam matris", Pagninus, Montanus, Mercerus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Cocceius, Michaelis; "doctrinam", Vatablus, Tigurine version; "disciplinam", Castalio; "obsequium matris", Schultens. (t) Lexic. col. 1960. (u) "Non pasces in cruce corvos", Horat. Ephesians 16. ad Quinctium, v. 48. (w) "Hic prior in cadaveribus oculum petit", Isidor. Origin. l. 12. c. 7. "Effossos oculos vorat corvus", Catullus ad Cominium, Ephesians 105. v. 5.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

17. The eye—for the person, with reference to the use of the organ to express mockery and contempt, and also as that by which punishment is received.

the ravens … eagles … eat—either as dying unnaturally, or being left unburied, or both.

Proverbs 30:17 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Words of Agur
16Sheol, and the barren womb, Earth that is never satisfied with water, And fire that never says, "Enough." 17The eye that mocks a father And scorns a mother, The ravens of the valley will pick it out, And the young eagles will eat it. 18There are three things which are too wonderful for me, Four which I do not understand:…
Cross References
Genesis 9:22
Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father naked and told his two brothers outside.

Deuteronomy 28:26
Your carcasses will be food for all the birds and the wild animals, and there will be no one to frighten them away.

Proverbs 15:20
A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish man despises his mother.

Proverbs 23:22
Listen to your father, who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.

Proverbs 30:18
"There are three things that are too amazing for me, four that I do not understand:

Malachi 1:6
"A son honors his father, and a slave his master. If I am a father, where is the honor due me? If I am a master, where is the respect due me?" says the LORD Almighty. "It is you priests who show contempt for my name. "But you ask, 'How have we shown contempt for your name?'
Treasury of Scripture

The eye that mocks at his father, and despises to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

eye

Proverbs 30:11 There is a generation that curses their father, and does not bless their mother.

Proverbs 20:20 Whoever curses his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out …

Proverbs 23:22 Listen to your father that begat you, and despise not your mother …

Genesis 9:21-27 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within …

Leviticus 20:9 For every one that curses his father or his mother shall be surely …

Deuteronomy 21:18-21 If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey …

2 Samuel 18:9,10,14-17 And Absalom met the servants of David. And Absalom rode on a mule, …

the ravens

1 Samuel 17:44 And the Philistine said to David, Come to me, and I will give your …

2 Samuel 21:10 And Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth, and spread it for …

valley or brook

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