Proverbs 11:29
He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind: and the fool shall be servant to the wise of heart.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(29) He that troubleth his own house.—Possibly by his stubbornness and avarice, as Proverbs 15:27.

Shall inherit the wind.—Will get nothing for his pains.

The fool (‘evîl).—The self-willed, who will listen to no advice, and so comes to ruin.

Proverbs 11:29. He that troubleth his own house — He who brings trouble upon himself and children; either, 1st, By carelessness, sloth, improvidence, prodigality, or any wickedness, whereby he consumes his estate: or, 2d, By covetous desires, and restless endeavours to heap up riches, whereby he greatly harasses and distresses both himself and his family with excessive cares and labours; shall inherit the wind — Shall be as unable to keep and enjoy what he gets, as a man is to hold the wind in his fist, or to feed and satisfy himself with it: he shall be brought to poverty. And the fool shall be servant to the wise of heart — A person so destitute of prudence or industry, shall, through his extreme necessity, be obliged to work hard for his living, and to become a servant to such as are more diligent in pursuing, and more discreet in managing their worldly affairs.

11:28. The true believer is a branch of the living Vine. When those that take root in the world wither, those who are grafted into Christ shall be fruitful. 29. He that brings trouble upon himself and his family, by carelessness, or by wickedness, shall be unable to keep and enjoy what he gets, as a man is unable to hold the wind, or to satisfy himself with it. 30. The righteous are as trees of life; and their influence upon earth, like the fruits of that tree, support and nourish the spiritual life in many. 31. Even the righteous, when they offend on earth, shall meet with sharp corrections; much more will the wicked meet the due reward of their sins. Let us then seek those blessings which our Surety purchased by his sufferings and death; let us seek to copy his example, and to keep his commandments.He that troubleth ... - The temper, nigardly and worrying, which leads a man to make those about him miserable, and proves but bad economy in the end. 29. troubleth—as Pr 15:27 explains, by greediness for gain (compare Pr 11:17).

inherit … wind—Even successful, his gains are of no real value. So the fool, thus acting, either comes to poverty, or heaps up for others.

He that troubleth his own house; he who bringeth trouble and misery upon himself and children, either,

1. By carelessness, slothfulness, improvidence, prodigality, or any wickedness, whereby he consumeth his estate. So this troubling of his house may be opposed to a man’s building of his house, Jeremiah 29:28. Or,

2. By covetous desires and restless endeavours to heap up riches, whereby he greatly tires and troubles both himself and all his family with excessive cares and labours, which is called coveting an evil covetousness to his house, Habakkuk 2:9.

Shall inherit the wind; shall be as unable to keep and enjoy what he gets as a man is to hold the wind in his fist, or to feed and satisfy himself with it; he shall be brought to poverty.

The fool shall be servant to the wise of heart; by which means such a troublesome fool shall through his extreme necessity be forced even to sell himself to such as are wiser.

He that troubleth his own house,.... His family, his wife, and children, and servants; by being bitter to the one, and by provoking the others to wrath, and continually giving out menacing words to the rest; or through idleness, not providing for his family; or through an over worldly spirit, pushing on business, and hurrying it on beyond measure; or through a stubborn and avaricious temper, withholding meat and drink, and clothes convenient for them; see Proverbs 15:27; or through profuseness and prodigality. Such an one

shall inherit the wind; nothing but vanity and emptiness; he shall come to nothing, and get nothing; and what he does, be shall not keep, and on which he cannot live;

and the fool shall be servant to the wise of heart; he who has both got and lost his substance in a foolish way shall be so reduced as to become a servant to him who has pursued wise measures, both in getting and keeping what he has; and to whom perhaps the fool formerly stood in the relation of a master. Such a change will be with respect to antichrist and the saints, Daniel 7:25.

He that troubleth his own {q} house shall inherit the wind: and the fool shall be {r} servant to the wise of heart.

(q) The covetous men who spare their riches to the hinderance of their families, will be deprived of it miserably.

(r) For though the wicked are rich, yet they are only slaves to the godly, who are the true possessors of the gifts of God.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
29. troubleth] by churlish and stubborn ways. Comp. the story of Nabal, 1 Samuel 25.

the wind] Which shall drive away him and his possessions, Psalm 1:4; or the wind may here be used to denote that which is unsubstantial and vanishes away. Comp. Isaiah 41:29.

Verse 29. - He that troubleth his own house; he that annoys and worries his family and household by stubbornness, bad management, and captious ill temper. So the Son of Sirach writes (Ecclus. 4:30), "Be not as a lion in thy house, nor frantic (φαντασιοκοπῶν, 'suspicious') among thy servants." Septuagint, "he who has no friendly intercourse (ὁ μὴ συμπεριφερόμενος) with his own house." Shall inherit the wind; he will be the loser in the end; no one will lend him a helping hand, and his affairs will fall to ruin. The fool - the man who acts thus foolishly - shall be servant to the wise of heart; to the man who administers his household matters in a better and more orderly manner (see on Proverbs 12:24). It is implied that the troubler of his own house shall be reduced to such extremity as to have to apply for relief to the wise of heart. The other side of the question is given by the Son of Sirach: "Unto the servant that is wise shall they that are free do service" (Ecclus. 10:25). The prodigal in the parable prayed his father to make him one of his hired servants (Luke 15:19). Proverbs 11:2929 He that troubleth his own household shall inherit the wind,

     And a fool becomes servant to the wise in heart.

Jerome well translates: qui conturbat domum suam, for עכר closely corresponds to the Lat. turbare; but with what reference is the troubling or disturbing here meant? The Syr. translates 29a doubly, and refers it once to deceit, and the second time to the contrary of avarice; the lxx, by ὁ μὴ συμπεριφερόμενος τῷ ἑαυτοῦ οἴκῳ, understands one who acts towards his own not unsociably, or without affability, and thus not tyrannically. But עכר שׁארו Proverbs 11:17, is he who does not grudge to his own body that which is necessary; עכר ישׂראל is applied to Elijah, 1 Kings 18:17, on account of whose prayer there was a want of rain; and at Proverbs 15:27 it is the covetous who is spoken of as עכר בּיתו. The proverb has, accordingly, in the man who "troubles his own house" (Luth.), a stubborn and sordid person (Hitzig) in view, one who does not give to his own, particularly to his own servants, a sufficiency of food and of necessary recreation. Far from raising himself by his household arrangements, he shall only inherit wind (ינחל, not as the Syr. translates, ינחיל, in the general signification to inherit, to obtain, as Proverbs 3:35; Proverbs 28:10, etc.), i.e., he goes always farther and farther back (for he deprives his servants of all pleasure and love for their work in seeking the prosperity of his house), till in the end the reality of his possession dissolves into nothing. Such conduct is not only loveless, but also foolish; and a foolish person (vid., regarding אויל at Proverbs 1:7) has no influence as the master of a house, and generally is unable to maintain his independence: "and the servant is a fool to him who is wise of heart." Thus the lxx (cf. also the lxx of Proverbs 10:5), Syr., Targ., Jerome, Graec. Venet., Luth. construe the sentence. The explanation, et servus stulti cordato (sc. addicitur), i.e., even the domestics of the covetous fool are at last partakers in the wise beneficence (Fl.), places 29b in an unnecessary connection with 29a, omits the verb, which is here scarcely superfluous, and is not demanded by the accentuation (cf. e.g., Proverbs 19:22).

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