Proverbs 4:8
Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her.
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(8) Exalt her, and she shall promote thee.—Comp. 1Samuel 2:30, “Them that honour me I will honour.”

4:1-13 We must look upon our teachers as our fathers: though instruction carry in it reproof and correction, bid it welcome. Solomon's parents loved him, therefore taught him. Wise and godly men, in every age of the world, and rank in society, agree that true wisdom consists in obedience, and is united to happiness. Get wisdom, take pains for it. Get the rule over thy corruptions; take more pains to get this than the wealth of this world. An interest in Christ's salvation is necessary. This wisdom is the one thing needful. A soul without true wisdom and grace is a dead soul. How poor, contemptible, and wretched are those, who, with all their wealth and power, die without getting understanding, without Christ, without hope, and without God! Let us give heed to the sayings of Him who has the words of eternal life. Thus our path will be plain before us: by taking, and keeping fast hold of instruction, we shall avoid being straitened or stumbling.Or, "The beginning of wisdom is - get wisdom." To seek is to find, to desire is to obtain.8. As you highly esteem her, she will raise you to honor.

embrace her—with fond affection.

Exalt her; let her have thine highest esteem and affection.

To honour, both with God and men; which Solomon knew by experience.

Exalt her, and she shall promote thee,.... Christ is to be exalted in his person, by asserting his proper deity; by ascribing all divine perfections to him; by allowing him to be the author of all divine works; by giving him divine worship and homage; by owning his divine and eternal sonship, and distinct personality: he is to be exalted in all his offices of Prophet, Priest, and King, and as the only Redeemer and Saviour; by trusting in him, embracing his Gospel, and submitting to his ordinances, and such that exalt him, he will "promote" them here and hereafter; of which more in the next clause. According to the Talmudists (u), the word for "exalt" signifies a diligent search, by turning things about to find out what is sought; and so the Septuagint interpret the word in the sense of "searching", Jeremiah 50:26;

she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her: by faith: for this is an act of faith, and a very considerable one, and is expressive of great nearness to Christ, of much intimacy and familiarity with him, of strong love and affection to him, of a good degree of boldness used with him, and of joy and exaltation in him; for such an action is used by persons near akin, and are very familiar with, and have a very great affection for one another, and use much freedom with each other, and rejoice at meeting together. Now such who embrace Christ, in the arms of their faith, as their alone Saviour, such he promotes and "brings to honour"; not to honour among men, for to embrace Christ and exalt him is the way to disgrace, though the disgrace is an honour, and will be before long rolled off; but to honour hereafter. Such will be set at his right hand, and be owned by him before his Father and his angels; and they will be placed on the same throne with him, and will reign with him for ever and ever; see 1 Samuel 2:30.

(u) T. Bab. Roshhashanah, fol. 26. 2.

Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her.
Verse 8 - Exalt her, and she shall promote thee. The father here proceeds to point out some of the benefits which follow from the pursuit of Wisdom. Exalt her (sal's'leah); Vulgate, arripe illam; LXX., περιχαράκωσον αὐτὴν; Targum, dilige eam; Syriac, blandire illi; Arabic, circumsepi eam. The Hebrew, sal's'leah, is the pilpel imperative of salal, "to lift up, exalt." It is equivalent to the kal form. The pilpel form only occurs here, but the kal participle is met with in Proverbs 15:19, where it has the meaning of "to raise up as a causeway" (see marginal reading in loc.). Gesenius renders, "exalt her," sc. with praises. The meaning of the verb, as Delitzsch says, is to be determined, by the corresponding "she shall promote thee" (th'rom'mek), and this verb romem is

(1) to raise or make high;

(2) to exalt by bestowing honours upon one of low estate, i.e. raising them in general estimation; it is so used in 1 Samuel 2:7 by Hannah, in her song of thankfulness, "He (Jehovah) bringeth low and lifteth up (m'romem);"

(3) to extol by praises, as in Psalm 30:2. The radical meaning of salal seems to be "to heap up," as a road is prepared by embankments, and by the filling up of inequalities (cf. Isaiah 62:10). In this sense the passage before us is explained by Levi ben Gersom, "Prepare the way of Wisdom, and walk assiduously in it." But the context, wherein the idea of buying is evidently used. favours Bottcher's interpretation, "Hold it or her high in price, bid high for her as a purchaser who makes offer upon offer, to secure what he wants." So Pi, in pretio habe. The LXX. rendering, "Circumvallate her, enclose her with a wall or hedge," which is reproduced in the Arabic, circumsepi eam, "hedge her around," seems out of place with the context. The Talmudists understand the verb as signifying "to examine closely," "to scrutinize, meditate, or reflect" upon Wisdom constantly, just as the Roman, poet says, "Nocturna versate manu, versate diurna" - "We exalt Wisdom when we follow her precepts," i.e. when we esteem her - the idea which is presented to us in the Targum and Syriac cited above. The sentiment of the verse agrees with what Jehovah says in the message of the man of God to Eli, in 1 Samuel 2:30, "Them that honour me I will honour." She shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her. The LXX. reverses the order of ideas, "Honour her in order that she may embrace thee." Embrace her; i.e. in a loving and affectionate manner, as a husband does his wife, or a son his mother. (For the verb khavak, see Proverbs 5:20: Song of Solomon 2:6; Song of Solomon 8:3.) There are only three other instances where this verb occurs in the pilel form, khibbek. Esteem and honour, the confidence of others, elevation to offices of trust and consequence, are some of the rewards with which Wisdom repays those who esteem and love her. Others follow in the next verse. Proverbs 4:8The meaning of the ἁπ. γεγρ. סלסל is determined by רומם in the parallel clause; סלל signifies to raise, exalt, as a way or dam by heaping up; the Pilpel, here tropical: to value or estimate highly. Bttcher interprets well: hold it high in price, raise it (as a purchaser) always higher, make offer for it upon offer. The lxx (approved by Bertheau), περιχαράκωσον αὐτήν, circumvallate it, i.e., surround it with a wall (סללה) - a strange and here unsuitable figure. Hold it high, says the author, and so it will reward

(Note: Lwenstein has rightly ותרוממך, vid., my preface to Baer's Genesis, p. vii.)

thee with a high place, and (with chiastic transposition of the performance and the consequence) she will honour

(Note: We read תכבּדך, not תכבּרך (Hahn) or תכבּדך (Lwenstein); the tone lies on the penult., and the tone-syllable has the point Tsere, as in ויגּדך, Deuteronomy 32:7; vid., Michlol 66b.)

thee if (ἐάν) thou lovingly embracest her. חבּק is used of embracing in the pressure of tender love, as in Sol 2:6; Sol 8:3; the Piel is related to the Kal as amplexari to amplecti. Wisdom exalts her admirers, honours her lovers, and makes a man's appearance pleasant, causing him to be reverenced when he approaches. Regarding לוית־חן, vid., Proverbs 1:9. מגּן, to deliver up (Genesis 14:20), to give up (Hosea 11:8), is connected in the free poetic manner with two accusatives, instead of with an accus. and dat. lxx has ὑπερασπίσῃ, but one does not defend himself (as with a shield) by a wreath or crown.

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