The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Fountain of life.—Comp. Proverbs 13:14 and John 4:14.Proverbs 10:11 note.
fear of the Lord—or, "law of the wise," is wisdom (Ps 111:10).John 4:14; eternal life is connected with it; it makes meet for it, and issues in it: or the Lord, who is the object of fear, he is the fountain of life: as of natural, so of spiritual and eternal life; spiritual life springs from him, is supported and maintained by him, the consequence of which is life everlasting;
to depart from the snares of death; sins, transgressions, as Aben Ezra interprets it; these are the works of men's hands, in which they are snared; these are the cords in which they are holden, and so die without instruction; the wages of them are death, even death eternal: likewise there are the snares of the world and of the devil, temptations to sin, with which being ensnared, lead to death; now the fear of the Lord is a means of delivering from and of avoiding those snares, and so of escaping death.The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)27. Comp. Proverbs 13:14.Verse 27. - A repetition of Proverbs 13:14, substituting the fear of the Lord for "the law of the wise." The fear of the Lord can he called a fountain of life, because, showing itself in obedience, it nourishes the flowers and fruits of faith, produces graces and virtues, and prepares the soul for immortality. Septuagint, "The commandment of the Lord is a fountain of life, and makes one decline from the snare of death."
But whoever hath compassion on the suffering - blessings on him!
One should regard every human being, especially such as God has placed near to him, as a being having the same origin, as created in the image of God, and of the same lofty destination, and should consider himself as under obligation to love him. He who despiseth his neighbour (write בּז with Metheg, and vid., regarding the constr. with dat. object. Proverbs 6:30, cf. Proverbs 11:12; Proverbs 13:13) sins in this respect, that he raises himself proudly and unwarrantably above him; that the honour and love he shows to him he measures not by the rule of duty and of necessity, but according to that which is pleasing to himself; and in that he refuses to him that which according to the ordinance of God he owes him. In Proverbs 14:21 the Chethı̂b עניּים and the Kerı̂ ענוים (vid., at Psalm 9:13) interchange in an inexplicable way; עני is the bowed down (cf. Arab. ma'nuww, particularly of the prisoner, from 'ana, fut. ya'nw, to bow, bend), ענו (Arab. 'anin, with the art. âl'niy, from the intrans. 'aniya, to be bowed down) the patient bearer who in the school of suffering has learned humility and meekness. One does not see why the Kerı̂ here exchanges that passive idea for this ethical one, especially since, in proving himself to be מחונן (compassionate) (for which elsewhere the part. Kal חונן, Proverbs 14:31; Proverbs 19:17; Proverbs 28:8), one must be determined only by the needy condition of his neighbour, and not by his (the neighbour's) moral worthiness, the want of which ought to make him twofold more an object of our compassion. All the old translators, from the lxx to the Venet. and Luther, on this account adopt the Chethı̂b.
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