|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.
Verse 23. - For an odious woman when she is married; or, under an unloved woman when she is married. The sentence does not refer to an unbeloved wife, a Leah, becoming the favourite, a Rachel; the expression, "when she is married," can hardly have this sense; but the gnome speaks of a woman who has passed much of her life without love, having nothing about her attractive either in looks, attainments, or manner, and is consequently soured and ill-tempered. If such a one does at last win a husband, she uses her new position to vex those who formerly depreciated her, and to make them as miserable as she cam And a handmaid that is heir to her mistress. The maidservant that obtains her mistress's property, either by supplanting her or by right of inheritance, is supposed to make a bad use of it, to become conceited, arrogant, and odious to all around her. The LXX. transposes the last two members of the comparison, placing the unloved woman in the fourth place as the most intolerable of all: "And if a maidservant should cast out (ἐκβάλη, Genesis 21:10) her own mistress, and a hateful woman should obtain a good husband."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For an odious woman, when she is married,.... Odious for her person, her ugliness, and the deformity of her body; or rather for the ill qualities of her mind, which, while single, she endeavours to conceal, but, being married, hides them no longer; but becomes imperious, proud, scornful, and malicious, and behaves in an ill natured way to her husband and all about her, to such a degree, that there is no bearing the place where she is;
and an handmaid, that is heir to her mistress; that has got so much into her affections that she leaves all she has to her when she dies, which makes her insufferably proud and vain; or she marries her master after the death of her mistress, and so coming into her place enjoys all she had, but only her wisdom and humility; which being wanting, she behaves in such a manner as to make the whole family uneasy. This might be exemplified in the case of Hagar, the bondmaid of Sarah, a type of those that are under the law of works, and seek the inheritance by it; and who trust in themselves that they are righteous, and despise others, Genesis 16:4.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
23. heir … mistress—that is, takes her place as a wife (Ge 16:4).
Proverbs 30:23 Parallel Commentaries
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