Proverbs 3:33
The curse of the LORD is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(33) He blesseth the habitation of the just.—The word rendered “habitation” often signifies “pasture,” “sheepfold,” and this is a relic of the time when the Israelites led a nomad life and had no fixed habitations; so the cry, “To your tents, O Israel!” (1Kings 12:16) was still in use long after the settlement in Canaan. By some there is thought to be a distinction intended between the well-built “house” of the wicked and the slightly constructed cottage of the humble just man, no better than a shepherd’s hut.

Proverbs 3:33-35. The curse of the Lord is in the house, &c. — Not only upon his own person, but upon his posterity, and upon all his domestic concerns. But he blesseth the habitation — Hebrew, נוה, the cottage, or sheepcot, that is, the dwelling, however mean; of the just — The blessing of God is upon him, his house and family, and all his concerns. Surely he scorneth the scorners — He will expose to scorn and contempt all proud and insolent sinners, who make a mock at sin, (Proverbs 14:9,) and at God and religion, and who despise all counsels and means of amendment: for those that exalt themselves shall certainly be abased. But he giveth grace unto the lowly — Namely, favour, both with himself and with men, as this phrase is often used. The LXX. render this verse, The Lord resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the lowly; and St. Peter and St. James have quoted it according to them, 1 Peter 5:5; James 4:6. The wise shall inherit glory — Shall enjoy it, not only for a season, as wicked men often do, but as an inheritance, constantly and for ever; but shame shall be the promotion of fools — Instead of that glory which they greedily seek, they shall meet with nothing but ignominy. The reading in the margin, Shame exalteth the fools, or, as some render the clause, The elevation of fools shall turn to their confusion, seems more agreeable to the Hebrew: that is, the more they have been elevated, “the more their folly shall be known, and their fall become more fatal.”

3:27-35 Our business is to observe the precepts of Christ, and to copy his example; to do justice, to love mercy, and to beware of covetousness; to be ready for every good work, avoiding needless strife, and bearing evils, if possible, rather than seeking redress by law. It will be found there is little got by striving. Let us not envy prosperous oppressors; far be it from the disciples of Christ to choose any of their ways. These truths may be despised by the covetous and luxurious, but everlasting contempt will be the portion of such scorners, while Divine favour is shown to the humble believer.The thought, like that which appears in Zechariah 5:3-4, and pervades the tragedies of Greek drama, is of a curse, an Ate, dwelling in a house from generation to generation, the source of ever-recurring woes. There is, possibly, a contrast between the "house" or "palace" of the rich oppressor and the lowly shepherd's hut, the "sheep-cote" 2 Samuel 7:8 ennobled only by its upright inhabitants.33. curse … wicked—It abides with them, and will be manifested. In the house of the wicked; not only upon his own person, but also upon his posterity, and upon all his domestical concerns.

The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked,.... The wicked man, being a transgressor of the law, is under the curse of it; and all that he has, his house, his substance, his very blessings are curses; see Malachi 2:2; he is accursed amidst his greatest affluence, and sometimes from a plentiful estate is reduced to penury and want: and Aben Ezra interprets it, "the curse of want"; and the Vulgate Latin version is, "want from the Lord is", &c.

but he blesseth the habitation of the just; the righteous man, as before described; he is blessed himself, having the righteousness of Christ imputed to him, and his sins forgiven him for his sake; and what he has of worldly substance, though it be ever so little, he has it with a blessing; and therefore it is better than the riches of many wicked men; his house, though it is but a courage, as the word (k) here signifies, is blessed with the presence of God in it; his family, his children, and servants, are blessed, having his instructions and example, and especially when made effectual by the grace of God; as the house of Obededom was blessed for the sake of the ark, so is a just man's house, being a "bethel", an house of God, blessed on account of his worship in it; see 2 Samuel 6:11.

(k) "tugurio", Montanus; "tugurium, vel casam pastoritiam", Gejerus.

The curse of the LORD is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Verse 33. - The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked. From ver. 33 to the end of the discourse the contrast is continued between the condition of the wicked and the just, the scornful and the lowly, the wise and the fools. In the verse before us a further reason is given why the prosperity of the wicked is not enviable. The curse of Jehovah dwells in and rests upon his house. The curse; m'erah, from arav, "to curse." This word only occurs five times in the Old Testament once in Deuteronomy, twice in Proverbs (here and in Proverbs 28:27), and twice in Malachi. The nature of the curse may be learned from Deuteronomy 28:20, where it is the infliction of temporal misfortunes ending with the "cutting off" of the wicked (see Psalm 37:22). It is a hovering evil, the source of constant misfortune. LXX., κατάρα. Cf. "the cursing" (alah) against thieves and swearers in Zechariah 5:4. But he blesseth the habitation the just. The contrast to the former, as in Deuteronomy 28:2-6. He blesseth; i.e. both temporarily and spiritually. Blessing does not exclude affliction, but "trials" are not "curses" (Wardlaw). Both the LXX. and the Vulgate render, "But the habitations of the just shall be blessed," the LXX. having read the pual future (y'vorak), "they shall be blessed," for the piel future (y'varik), "he shall bless," of the text. The habitation; naveh, from navah, "to sit down," "to dwell." A poetic and nomad (Fleischer) word usually understood of a small dwelling is tugurium, the shepherd's hut or cottage, "the sheepcote" of 2 Samuel 7:8. The LXX. ἕπαυλις, and tho Vulgate hubitaculam, favour the suggestion of Gejerus, that a contrast is here made between the large house or palace (bayith) of the wicked and the small dwelling of the just. In Proverbs 21:20 and Proverbs 24:15 the word is rendered "dwelling." Proverbs 3:33The prosperity of the godless, far from being worthy of envy, has as its reverse side the curse:

The curse of Jahve is in the house of the godless,

And the dwelling of the just He blesseth.

מארה (a curse), like מסלּה (a highway, from סלל), is formed from ארר (cf. Arab. harr, detestari, abhorrere, a word-imitation of an interjection used in disagreeable experiences). The curse is not merely a deprivation of external goods which render life happy, and the blessing is not merely the fulness of external possessions; the central-point of the curse lies in continuous disquiet of conscience, and that of the blessing in the happy consciousness that God is with us, in soul-rest and peace which is certain of the grace and goodness of God. The poetic נוה (from נוה equals Arab. nwy, tetendit aliquo) signifies the place of settlement, and may be a word borrowed from a nomad life, since it denotes specially the pasture-ground; cf. Proverbs 24:15 (Fleischer). While the curse of God rests in the house of the wicked (vid., Khler on Zechariah 5:4), He blesses, on the contrary, the dwelling-place of the righteous. The lxx and Jerome read יברך, but יברך is more agreeable, since God continues to be the subject.

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