Proverbs 27:10
Your own friend, and your father's friend, forsake not; neither go into your brother's house in the day of your calamity: for better is a neighbor that is near than a brother far off.
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(10) Better is a neighbour that is near.—See above on Proverbs 17:17; Proverbs 18:24. “Near” and “far off”—i.e., in feeling.

Proverbs 27:10. Thine own friend, and thy father’s friend — Of whose friendship thou hast had long experience; forsake not — But betake thyself to him, when thou art in distress, rather than to thy natural brother or kinsman, if he be not also thy friend. For better is a neighbour — That is, a friend, such as is mentioned in the beginning of the verse, who hath showed himself to be a true and good neighbour; that is near — Namely, in affection; than a brother far off — Who is alienated in affection from thee.27:9,10. Depend not for relief upon a kinsman, merely for kindred's sake; apply to those who are at hand, and will help in need. But there is a Friend that sticketh closer than a brother, and let us place entire confidence in him. 11. An affectionate parent urges his son to prudent conduct that should gladden his heart. The good conduct of Christians is the best answer to all who find fault with the gospel. 12. Where there is temptation, if we thrust ourselves into it, there will be sin, and punishment will follow. 13. An honest man may be made a beggar, but he is not honest that makes himself one. 14. It is folly to be fond of being praised; it is a temptation to pride."Better is a neighbor" who is really "near" in heart and spirit, than a brother who though closer by blood, is "far off" in feeling. 10. Adhere to tried friends. The ties of blood may be less reliable than those of genuine friendship. Thy father’s friend, of whose friendship thou hast had long experience.

Neither go into thy brother’s house, to wit, for comfort and relief, and so as to forsake or neglect thy friend for him.

Better is a neighbour; the friend mentioned in the beginning of the verse, who hath showed himself to be a true and a good neighbour.

That is near; either,

1. In place by cohabitation. Or rather,

2. In affection, in which respect God is oft said to be near to the righteous, and far from the wicked. Thine own friend, and thy father's friend forsake not,.... Who have been long tried and proved, and found faithful; these should be kept to and valued, and not new ones sought; which to do is oftentimes of bad consequence. Solomon valued his father's friend Hiram, and kept up friendship with him; but Rehoboam his son forsook the counsel of the old men his father's friends and counsellors, and followed the young mien his new friends, and thereby lost ten tribes at once. Jarchi interprets this of God, the friend of Israel and of their fathers, who is not to be forsaken, and is a friend that loves at all times; and to forsake him is to forsake the fountain of living waters;

neither go into thy brother's house in the day of thy calamity; poverty and distress, to tell him thy case, expecting sympathy relief, and succour from him; but rather go to thy friend and father's friend, who sticks closer than a brother; see Proverbs 18:24;

for better is a neighbour that is near than a brother far off: a neighbour that is a fast and faithful friend, and who is not only near as to place but as to affections is more serviceable and, useful to a man in time of distress than a brother though near in blood, yet as far off in place, so much more in affection, and from whom a man can promise nothing, and little is to be expected. The phrase in the preceding clause signifies a cloudy day, and such a day of distress through poverty is; in which sense it is used by Latin (e) writers, when a man is alone, and former friends care not to come nigh him.

(e) "Tempora si fuerunt nubila, solus eris", Ovid. Trist. 1. Eleg. 8.

Thy own friend, and thy father's friend, forsake not; neither go into thy brother's {d} house in the day of thy calamity: for better is a neighbour that is near than a brother far off.

(d) Do not trust any worldly help in the day of your trouble.

10. The aim of this proverb is not of course to depreciate natural affection, but to warn against pressing unduly the claims of kinship and blood relationship, on which, with the sanction of the Law of Moses, such store was set in the East. Do not think it necessary, says the writer, to seek out in thy time of trouble a kinsman, who may be far from thee in place and sympathy, when thou hast one near at hand, who though he be no kinsman is the tried friend of thyself and of thy father before thee. See Proverbs 17:17, Proverbs 18:24, and notes.

“Compare the following passage from Hesiod, Works and Days. 27:341:

Τὸν δὲ μάλιστα καλεῖν, ὄς τις σέθεν ἐγγύθι ναἰει

Εἰ γάρ τοι καὶ χρῆμʼ ἐγχώριον ἄλλο γένηται,

Γείτονες ἄζωστοι ἔκιον, ζώσαντο δὲ πηοί.

‘Chiefly bid to thy feast the friend that dwelleth hard by thee; For should there chance to come a matter that toucheth the village, Neighbours will come in haste, while kinsmen leisurely gird them.’ ”

Dean Plumptre in Speaker’s Comm.Verse 10. - Another proverb, a tristich, in praise of friendship. It seems to be a combination of two maxims. Thine own friend, and thy father's friend, forsake not. A father's friend is one who is connected with a family by hereditary and ancestral bonds; φίλον πατρῷον. Septuagint. Such a one is to be cherished and regarded with the utmost affection. Neither go into thy brother's house in the day of thy calamity. The tried friend is more likely to help and sympathize with you than even your own brother, for a friend is born for adversity, and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother (Proverbs 17:17; Proverbs 18:24, where see notes). The mere blood relationship, which is the result of circumstances over which one has had no control, is inferior to the affectionate connection which arises from moral considerations and is the effect of deliberate choice. We must remember, too, that the practice of polygamy, with the separate establishments of the various wives, greatly weakened the tie of brotherhood. There was little love between David's sons; and Jonathan was far dearer to David himself than any of his numerous brothers were. Better is a neighbour that is near than a brother far off. "Near" and "far off" may be taken as referring to feeling or to local position. In the former case the maxim says that a neighbour who is really attached to one by the bonds of affection is better than the closest relation who has no love or sympathy. In the latter view, the proverb enunciates the truth that a friend on the spot in time of calamity is more useful than a brother living at a distance (μακρὰν οἰκῶν, Septuagint); one is sure of help at once from the former, while application to the latter must occasion delay, and may not be successful. Commentators quote Hesiod, Ἔργ. καὶ Ημ., 341 -

Τὸν δὲ μάλιστα καλεῖν ὅστις σέθεν ἐγγύθεναίει
Αἰ γάρ τοι καὶ χρῆμ ἐγκώμιον ἄλλο γένηται
Γείτονες ἄζωστοι ἔκιον ζώσαντο δὲ πηοί 4 The madness of anger, and the overflowing of wrath -

   And before jealousy who keeps his place!

Here also the two pairs of words 4a stand in connection; אכזריּוּת (for which the Cod. Jaman has incorrectly אכזריות) is the connecting form; vid., regarding אכזרי, Proverbs 5:9. Let one imagine the blind, relentless rage of extreme excitement and irritation, a boiling over of anger like a water-flood, which bears everything down along with it - these paroxysms of wrath do not usually continue long, and it is possible to appease them; but jealousy is a passion that not only rages, but reckons calmly; it incessantly ferments through the mind, and when it breaks forth, he perishes irretrievably who is its object. Fleischer generalizes this idea: "enmity proceeding from hatred, envy, or jealousy, it is difficult or altogether impossible to withstand, since it puts into operation all means, both secretly and openly, to injure the enemy." But after Proverbs 6:34., cf. Sol 8:8, there is particularly meant the passion of scorned, mortified, deceived love, viz., in the relation of husband and wife.

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