He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit exalts folly.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)He that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly—i.e., brings it into view, or shows himself highly foolish. Or it may signify, “he takes up and carries away folly as his portion,” as Proverbs 3:35 may be translated, “fools receive shame for their portion.”Proverbs 14:29. He that is slow to wrath, &c. — He who is not soon provoked to anger by reproaches or ill usage, shows himself to be a wise and great man; but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly — Exposes his folly, and makes it apparent to every body. Hebrew, מרים אולת, lifteth up folly, displays it like a banner.
hasty—(Compare Pr 14:17).
exalteth folly—makes it conspicuous, as if delighting to honor it.Is of great understanding; showeth great and true wisdom in conquering his sinful and shameful passions.
Exalteth, Heb. lifteth up, like a banner; makes it known and visible to all men.
but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly; or is "short of spirit" (f); is soon angry; presently discovers resentment in his words, looks, and gestures; such an one "exalts folly", prefers it to wisdom, sets it above himself, and makes it his master: or he "lifts" it (g) up; exposes his folly to public view, so that it is seen of all men to his disgrace.
(e) "longus iris", Vatablus; "longus naribus", Montanus; "longus narium", Schultens. (f) "brevis spiritu", Montanus, Vatblus. Cocceius, Merceus, Michaelis; "curtus spiritu", Schultens. (g) "attollit", Mercerus, Piscator; "alte proclamat", Schultens; "elevat", Baynus.He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)29. slow to wrath] Comp. βραδὺς εἰς ὀργήν, James 1:19.
exalteth] The Heb. word may either mean, with A.V. and R.V. text, lifteth up, i.e. gives it prominence, brings it into notice; or, with R.V. marg., taketh up, and so carrieth away, as his possession. The first of these is to be preferred.Verse 29. - He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding. The Hebrew expression for what the Septuagint calls μακροθυμος, "long suffering," and the Vulgate, patiens, is "long in nostrils" (Proverbs 15:18), as the contrary temper, which we had in ver. 17, is "short in nostrils." That organ, into which was breathed the breath of life (Genesis 2:7), is taken as the seat of the inward spirit, and as showing by exterior signs the dominant feeling. The original is very terse, "long in nostrils, great in understanding." A man's prudence and wisdom are displayed by his being slow to take offence and being patient under injury. He that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly; i.e. flaunts it in the eyes of all men, makes plain exposure of it. Septuagint, "He who is short in temper is a mighty fool." "Passion," says an old saw, "makes fools of the wise. and shows the folly of the foolish" (comp. Proverbs 12:23; Proverbs 13:16). The word rendered "exalteth," צּצּצּ (marim), occurs in Proverbs 3:35, and is taken by Delitzsch and Nowack in the sense of "carries away" as the assured result. "By anger," says St. Gregory ('Moral.,' 5:78), "wisdom is parted with, so that we are left wholly in ignorance what to do, and in what order to do it.... Anger withdraws the light of understanding, while by agitating it troubles the mind." Proverbs 14:23-31) which, with a single exception (Proverbs 14:24), have all this in common, that one or two key-words in them begin with מ.
23 In all labour there is gain,
But idle talk leadeth only to loss.
Here the key-words are מותר and מחסור (parallel Proverbs 21:5, cf. with Proverbs 11:24), which begin with מ. עצב is labour, and that earnest and unwearied, as at Proverbs 10:22. If one toils on honestly, then there always results from it something which stands forth above the endeavour as its result and product, vid., at Job 30:11, where it is shown how יתר, from the primary meaning to be stretched out long, acquires the meaning of that which hangs over, shoots over, copiousness, and gain. By the word of the lips, on the contrary, i.e., purposeless and inoperative talk (דּבר שׂפתים as Isaiah 36:5, cf. Job 11:2), nothing is gained, but on the contrary there is only loss, for by it one only robs both himself and others of time, and wastes strength, which might have been turned to better purpose, to say nothing of the injury that is thereby done to his soul; perhaps also he morally injures, or at least discomposes and wearies others.
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