Proverbs 11:25
The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
11:1 However men may make light of giving short weight or measure, and however common such crimes may be, they are an abomination to the Lord. 2. Considering how safe, and quiet, and easy the humble are, we see that with the lowly is wisdom. 3. An honest man's principles are fixed, therefore his way is plain. 4. Riches will stand men in no stead in the day of death. 5,6. The ways of wickedness are dangerous. And sin will be its own punishment. 7. When a godly man dies, all his fears vanish; but when a wicked man dies, his hopes vanish. 8. The righteous are often wonderfully kept from going into dangerous situations, and the ungodly go in their stead. 9. Hypocrites delude men into error and sin by artful objections against the truths of God's word. 10,11. Nations prosper when wicked men are cast down. 12. A man of understanding does not judge of others by their success. 13. A faithful man will not disclose what he is trusted with, unless the honour of God and the real good of society require it. 14. We shall often find it to our advantage to advise with others. 15. The welfare of our families, our own peace, and our ability to pay just debts, must not be brought into danger. But here especially let us consider the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ in becoming Surety even for enemies. 16. A pious and discreet woman will keep esteem and respect, as strong men keep possession of wealth. 17. A cruel, froward, ill-natured man, is vexatious to those that are, and should be to him as his own flesh, and punishes himself. 18. He that makes it his business to do good, shall have a reward, as sure to him as eternal truth can make it. 19. True holiness is true happiness. The more violent a man is in sinful pursuits, the more he hastens his own destruction. 20. Nothing is more hateful to God, than hypocrisy and double dealing, which are here signified. God delights in such as aim and act with uprightness. 21. Joining together in sin shall not protect the sinners. 22. Beauty is abused by those who have not discretion or modesty with it. This is true of all bodily endowments. 23. The wicked desire mischief to others, but it shall return upon themselves. 24. A man may grow poor by not paying just debts, not relieving the poor, not allowing needful expenses. Let men be ever so saving of what they have, if God appoints, it comes to nothing. 25. Both in temporal and spiritual things, God commonly deals with his people according to the measure by which they deal with their brethren. 26. We must not hoard up the gifts of God's bounty, merely for our own advantage. 27. Seeking mischief is here set against seeking good; for those that are not doing good are doing hurt, even to themselves.Liberal soul - literally, "the soul that blesses," i. e., gives freely and fully. The similitudes are both of them essentially Eastern. Fatness, the sleek, well filled look of health, becomes the figure of prosperity, as leanness of misfortune Proverbs 13:4; Proverbs 28:25; Psalm 22:29; Isaiah 10:16. Kindly acts come as the refreshing dew and soft rain from heaven upon a thirsty land. 25. liberal soul—(Compare Margin).

made fat—prospers (Pr 28:25; De 32:15; Lu 6:38).

watereth … watered—a common figure for blessing.

The liberal soul, Heb. the soul of blessing; that man who is a blessing to others, who blesseth them, i.e. doeth good to them, as blessing is oft used for a gift, as Genesis 33:11 1 Samuel 25:27 2 Corinthians 9:5.

Shall be made fat; shall be greatly enriched, both with temporal and spiritual blessings.

He that watereth shall be watered also himself possibly it is a metaphor from a fountain, which when it poureth forth its waters is instantly filled again, whereas if it be stopped it groweth empty, and the water seeketh another course. Others render it, he shall be a rain, i.e. he shall receive such liberal supplies from God, that he shall be able to pour forth showers of good things upon others.

The liberal soul shall be made fat,.... Or, "the soul of blessing" (c): that is, as the Vulgate Latin version renders it, "the soul which blesseth"; not that merely prays for a blessing upon others, and wishes them well, and gives them good words; but bestows blessings on them, gives good things unto them liberally, cheerfully, and plentifully; and so is a blessing to the poor, and receives a blessing from them again; as such also do from the Lord, by whom they are "made fat"; or are blessed with temporal and spiritual blessings; and are in thriving and flourishing circumstances, both in soul and body. So he that comes full fraught with the blessing of the Gospel of Christ to others is enriched with it himself, and becomes more and more flourishing in gifts and grace;

and he that watereth shall be watered also himself; he that largely shares with others, like a flowing fountain of water, shall have an abundance communicated to him again from God, the inexhaustible fountain of mercies. Watering the plants in Christ's vineyard is one part of the work of a Gospel minister; "I have planted, Apollos watered", &c. 1 Corinthians 3:6; and such who do their work well are watered, rewarded, refreshed, and comforted of God, being largely taught and richly furnished for such service by him; so the Targum,

"and he that teacheth, also he himself shall learn.''

(c) "anima benedictionis", Montanus, Baynus, Cocceius, Michaelis; "anima benedictioni dedita", Schultens.

The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
25. The liberal soul] Lit. the soul of blessing (ψυχὴ εὐλογουμένη, LXX.); the soul that is ready to benefit and bless in will and deed. Comp. “a blessing” = “a gift,” 2 Kings 5:15, and ὁ σπείρων ἐπʼ εὐλογίαις, 2 Corinthians 9:6.

Verse 25. - The sentiment of the preceding verse is here carried on and confirmed. The liberal soul; literally, the soul of blessings, the man that blesses others by giving liberally. Shall be made fat (Proverbs 13:4; Proverbs 28:25). The term is used of the rich and prosperous (Psalm 22:29). Septuagint, "Every simple soul is blessed." He that watereth - benefits and refreshes others - shall be watered also himself; shall receive the blessing which he imparts. The Vulgate introduces another idea, Qui inebriat, ipse quoque inebriabitur, where the verb implies rather abundance than excess, as in Proverbs 5:19, etc. The Septuagint departs widely from the present text: "A passionate man is not graceful" (εὐσχήμων), i.e. is ugly in appearance and manner - a sentiment which may be very true, but it is not clear how it found its way into the passage. St. Chrysostom comments upon it in 'Hom.' 17, on St. John. There are some Eastern proverbs on the stewardship of the rich. When a good man gets riches, it is like fruit falling into the midst of the village. The riches of the good are like water turned into a rice field. The good, like clouds, receive only to give away. The rivers themselves drink not their water; nor do the trees eat their own sweet fruit, and the clouds eat not the crops. The garment in which you clothe another will last longer than that in which you clothe yourself. Who gives alms sows one and reaps a thousand. Proverbs 11:2525 A liberal soul [soul of blessing] is made fat,

     And he that watereth others is also watered.

A synonymous distich (vid., p. 7). A soul of blessing is one from whom blessings go out to others, who is even a blessing to all with whom he comes into fellowship; בּרצה denotes also particularly the gifts of love, 1 Samuel 25:27, בּרך denotes, if the Arab. is right, which derives it from the fundamental idea "to spread out:" to cause to increase and prosper by means of word and deed. The blessing which goes out from such a soul comes back again to itself: תדשּׁן (as Proverbs 13:4; Proverbs 28:25), it is made fat, gains thereby sap and strength in fulness; the Pual refers to the ordinance of God; Proverbs 22:9 is kindred in meaning to this anima benefica pinguefiet. In 25b יורא is the Aramaic form of writing, but without the Aramaic vocalization (cf. Proverbs 1:10. תּבא, Isaiah 21:12 ויּתא). Perhaps the א makes it noticeable that here a different word from יורה, morning rain, is used; however, Symm. translates πρωΐνός, and the Graec. Venet. (Kimchi following it) ὑετός. As a rule, we do not derive יורא from ירה, of which it would be the Hophal ( equals יוּרה, as הודע, Leviticus 4:23, equals הוּדע) (Ewald, 131f.); for the idea conspergitur, which the Ho. of the Hiph. יורה, Hosea 6:3, expresses, is, as correlate to מרוה, as a parallel word to תדשּׁן, one not of equal force. Jerome was guided by correct feeling, for he translates: et qui inebriat ipse quoque inebriabitur. The stem-word is certainly רוה, whether it is with Hitzig to be punctuated יוּרא equals ירוה, or with Fleischer we are to regard יורא as derived per metathesin from ירוה, as for Arab. ârây (to cause to see) is used

(Note: Hitzig's comparison of rawaâ, finem respicere, as transposed from waray is incorrect; the former verb, which signifies to consider, thus appears to be original.)

the vulgar Arab. ârway (in the Syr. Arab.) and âwray (in the Egypt. Arab.). We prefer the latter, for the passing of יורה (from ירוה) into יורה is according to rule, vid., at Proverbs 23:21.

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