Then shall you walk in your way safely, and your foot shall not stumble.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Proverbs 3:23. Then shalt thou walk in thy way — Manage all thy employments and concerns safely, securely, or confidently, without danger or fear, casting thy care on God, in the discharge of thy duty. And thy foot shall not stumble — At those stumbling-blocks, trials, and temptations, at which heedless sinners commonly stumble, and by which they fall. Thy natural life, and all that belongs to it, shall be under the protection of God’s providence; thy spiritual life, and all its interests, under the protection of his grace; so that thou shalt be kept from falling into sin or trouble. Wisdom shall direct thee into and keep thee in the right way, as far as may be from temptation, and will enable thee to walk in it with holy security, and thou shalt find the way of duty to be the way of safety.Walk in thy way; manage all thy employments and concerns.
Safely, or securely, or confidently, without danger or fear; casting thy care upon God in the discharge of thy duty.
Shall not stumble at those stumbling-blocks and temptations at which heedless sinners commonly stumble and fall. Thou shalt thereby be kept from falling into sin, and that mischief which generally attends upon it.
and thy foot shall not stumble; at the word and the truths of it, as some men do, being thereunto appointed; and at Christ, the stumbling stone laid in Zion, particularly at his justifying righteousness; see 1 Peter 2:8.Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)23. thy foot shall not stumble] Lit. thou shalt not dash thy foot, R.V. margin. Comp. Psalm 91:12, where “against a stone” is added.Verse 23. - Then shall thou walk in thy way safely. The first of the promises of protection, which follow from vers. 23-26. He who keeps "sound wisdom and discretion" shall enjoy the greatest sense of security in all situations of life. Safely (lavetakh); either in confidence, as Vulgate fiducialiter, i.e. confidently, because of the sense of security (cf. LXX., πεποιθὼς ἐν εἰρήνῃ, and ver. 26); or in security: the adverb lavetakh is equivalent to betakh in Proverbs 1:30 and Proverbs 10:9. The allusion is obvious. As he who is accompanied by an escort proceeds on his way in safety, so you protected by God will pass your life in security; or, as Trapp, "Thou shalt ever go under a double guard, 'the peace of God' within thee (Philippians 4:7), and the 'power of God' without thee (1 Peter 1:5)." And thy foot shall not stumble; literally, and thou shall not strike thy foot. Stumble in the original is thiggoph, 2 singular kal future of nagaph, "to smite, .... strike against with the foot." So in Psalm 91:12. The Authorized Version, however, correctly gives the sense. The LXX., like the Authorized Version, makes "foot" the subject, Ὁ δὲ ποῦς σου σὺ μὴ προσκόψῃ, "(That) thy foot may not stumble." For a similar assurance, see Proverbs 4:12. The meaning is: You will not stumble, because you will be walking in the way of wisdom, which is free from stumbling blocks (Lapide). You will not fall into sin. Proverbs 1:15);
(Note: The root is not תב, to grope, but נת; whence Arab. natt, to bubble up, natâ, to raise oneself, to swell up, etc.)
נתיבותיה has Munach, and instead of the Metheg, Tarcha, vid., under Proverbs 1:31. The figure of the tree of life the fruit of which brings immortality, is, as Proverbs 11:30; Proverbs 15:4 (cf. Proverbs 13:12), Revelation 2:7, taken from the history of paradise in the Book of Genesis. The old ecclesiastical saying, Lignum vitae crux Christi, accommodates itself in a certain measure, through Matthew 11:19; Luke 11:49, with this passage of the Book of Proverbs. החזיק ב means to fasten upon anything, more fully expressed in Genesis 21:18, to bind the hand firm with anything, to seize it firmly. They who give themselves to Wisdom, come to experience that she is a tree of life whose fruit contains and communicates strength of life, and whoever always keeps fast hold of Wisdom is blessed, i.e., to be pronounced happy (Psalm 41:3, vid., under Psalm 137:8). The predicate מאשּׁר, blessed, refers to each one of the תּמכיה, those who hold her, cf. Proverbs 27:16; Numbers 24:9. It is the so-called distributive singular of the predicate, which is freely used particularly in those cases where the plur. of the subject is a participle (vid., under Proverbs 3:35).
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