Proverbs 4:9
She shall give to your head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to you.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
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.9. ornament—such as the chaplet or wreath of conquerors.

deliver—(Compare Ge 14:20). The allusion to a shield, contained in the Hebrew, suggests protection as well as honor (compare Pr 4:6).

An ornament of grace, i.e. an acceptable or beautiful ornament, such as they used to put upon their heads. She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace,.... This, and the following clause, explain what that honour is Christ promotes and brings his followers to here and hereafter: he gives them grace and more grace; "an increase of grace", so the Vulgate Latin version renders it; and some think James refers to this passage, Proverbs 4:6. The grace that Christ gives is very ornamental to his people: justifying grace greatly beautifies and adorns them; it not only covers the nakedness of their souls, and all their spots and imperfections, and through it all their sins are caused to pass from them; but they are made exceeding beautiful, perfectly comely through this comeliness, a perfection of beauty by it; and which is often signified by that which is very ornamental, rich, and costly, as fine linen, clothing of wrought gold, raiment of needlework, a Wedding garment, stuck with jewels and precious stones: sanctifying grace, which also is Christ's gift, is very ornamental; it is called "the beauty of holiness"; it is that by which a man is made like to God, and conformed to the image of Christ; it is the curious workmanship of the Spirit of God; or what makes a man beautiful, and makes him meet for heaven and happiness: every grace is ornamental; faith, hope, love, humility, &c. these are like rows of jewels, and chains of gold, about the neck. And when this ornament is said to be given "to the head", it is not to be understood of the natural head of a man, but of his whole person, it gives a comeliness to; and may denote the visibility of it, as it appears in the life and conversation;

a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee; by which is meant eternal glory and happiness, called a "crown", an ensign of royal dignity, which, belongs to such as are made kings and priests unto God; and is given to conquerors, even who are more than conquerors through Christ, and as a reward of diligence and faithfulness, Revelation 2:10. It is sometimes called a crown of life, a crown of righteousness, an incorruptible and never-fading one, and, as here, "a crown of glory"; the saints in heaven will have a glory put upon them, both in soul and body; they will appear with Christ in glory, and be crowned with glory and honour, as he is; they will be clothed and surrounded with it: and so some render it,

"she will compass thee about with a crown of glory as with a shield'' (w);

see Psalm 5:12. This Christ is said to "deliver"; it is in his hands, laid up in him, and is safe with him; he has power to dispose of it, and it may be expected from him; see 2 Timothy 4:8.

(w) , Sept. "proteget te", V. L. "muniet te", Montanus, Tigerine version; "cinget te", Gejerus.

She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Verse 9. - An ornament of grace (liv'yath khen). (On this, see Proverbs 1:9.) A crown of glory shall she deliver to thee; or, as margin, she shall compass thee with a crown of glory. Deliver. The verb miggen, piel, since the kal, magan, is not used. is, however, properly, "to give, or deliver," as in Genesis 14:20; Hosea 11:8. That this is the meaning is clear from the corresponding "she shall give" (titten, but cf. nathan, "to give"). It is commonly found with an accusative and dative, but here takes two accusatives. Both the LXX. and the Vulgate render, "With a crown of glory or delights shall she protect (ὑπερασπίση, proteget) thee:" as if it were connected with magen, "a shield," but a crown is not usually associated with protection or defence. "A crown of glory," in the New Testament, is always associated with the everlasting honours of heaven, as in Hebrews 2:9; 2 Timothy 4:8; 1 Peter 4:4; Revelation 2:20. The meaning is here, "Wisdom shall confer on thee true dignity." He now confirms and explains the command to duty which he has placed at the beginning of the whole (Proverbs 1:8). This he does by his own example, for he relates from the history of his own youth, to the circle of disciples by whom he sees himself surrounded, what good doctrine his parents had taught him regarding the way of life:

1 Hear, ye sons, the instruction of a father,

   And attend that ye may gain understanding;

2 For I give to you good doctrine,

   Forsake not my direction!

3 For I was a son to my father,

   A tender and only (son) in the sight of my mother.

4 And he instructed me, and said to me:

   "Let thine heart hold fast my words:

   Observe my commandments and live!"

That בּנים in the address comes here into the place of בּני, hitherto used, externally denotes that בני in the progress of these discourses finds another application: the poet himself is so addressed by his father. Intentionally he does not say אביכם (cf. Proverbs 1:8): he does not mean the father of each individual among those addressed, but himself, who is a father in his relation to them as his disciples; and as he manifests towards them fatherly love, so also he can lay claim to paternal authority over them. לדעת is rightly vocalized, not לדעת. The words do not give the object of attention, but the design, the aim. The combination of ideas in דּעת בּינה (cf. Proverbs 1:2), which appears to us singular, loses its strangeness when we remember that דעת means, according to its etymon, deposition or reception into the conscience and life. Regarding לקח, apprehension, reception, lesson equals doctrine, vid., Proverbs 1:5. נתתּי is the perf., which denotes as fixed and finished what is just now being done, Gesenius, 126, 4. עזב is here synonym of נטשׁ, Proverbs 1:8, and the contrary of שׁמר, Proverbs 28:4. The relative factum in the perfect, designating the circumstances under which the event happened, regularly precedes the chief factum ויּרני; see under Genesis 1:2. Superficially understood, the expression 3a would be a platitude; the author means that the natural legal relation was also confirming itself as a moral one. It was a relation of many-sided love, according to 3a: he was esteemed of his mother - לפני, used of the reflex in the judgment, Genesis 10:9, and of loving care, Genesis 17:18, means this - as a tender child, and therefore tenderly to be protected (רך as Genesis 33:13), and as an only child, whether he were so in reality, or was only loved as if he were so. יחיד (Aq., Sym., Theod., μονογενής) may with reference to number also mean unice dilectus (lxx ἀγαπώμενος); cf. Genesis 22:2, יחידך (where the lxx translate τὸν ἀγαπητόν, without therefore having ידידך before them). לפני is maintained by all the versions; לבני is not a variant.

(Note: In some editions לבני is noted as Kerı̂ to לפני, but erroneously and contrary to the express evidence of the Masora, which affirms that there are two passages in which we ought to read not לפני, but לבני, viz., Psalm 80:3 and Proverbs 4:3.)

The instruction of the father begins with the jussive, which is pointed יתמך־

(Note: The writing of -יתמך with the grave Metheg (Gaja) and Kametz-Chatuph (ǒ) is that of Ben Asher; on the other hand, יתמך־ with Cholem (ō) and the permanent Metheg is that of Ben Naphtali; vid., Michlol 21a [under the verbal form 25], 30.)

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