Wesley's Notes on the Bible
As snow in summer, and as rain in harvest, so honour is not seemly for a fool.
As the bird by wandering, as the swallow by flying, so the curse causeless shall not come.
26:2 By flying - Secures itself from the fowler. Not come - Upon the innocent person, but he shall escape from it like a bird.
A whip for the horse, a bridle for the ass, and a rod for the fool's back.
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.
26:4 According - So as to imitate his folly, by passionate or reproachful speeches.
Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.
26:5 According - So as his folly needs and requires, convincing him strongly, reproving him sharply, and exposing him to just shame.
He that sendeth a message by the hand of a fool cutteth off the feet, and drinketh damage.
26:6 Cutteth off the feet - Of his messenger; bids one go that wants legs. Drinketh - Drinking, in scripture, frequently denotes the plentiful doing or receiving of any thing.
The legs of the lame are not equal: so is a parable in the mouth of fools.
26:7 The legs - Heb. the legs of the lame are lifted up, in going, or in dancing, which is done with great inequality and uncomeliness. So - No less incident are wise and pious speeches from a foolish and ungodly man.
As he that bindeth a stone in a sling, so is he that giveth honour to a fool.
26:8 Bindeth - Whereby he hinders his own design of throwing the stone out of it. So - No less absurd is he that giveth to a fool that honour which he is not capable of using aright.
As a thorn goeth up into the hand of a drunkard, so is a parable in the mouth of fools.
26:9 A thorn - As a thorn is in a drunkard's hand, which he cannot manage cautiously, but employs to his own and others hurt. So - As unprofitable, and, by accident, hurtful to himself and others.
The great God that formed all things both rewardeth the fool, and rewardeth transgressors.
26:10 Rewardeth - Will certainly give that recompence which is deserved by fools and transgressors, by such as sin either thro' ignorance, or wilfully.
As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.
Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him.
The slothful man saith, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets.
As the door turneth upon his hinges, so doth the slothful upon his bed.
26:14 Turneth - Moving hither and thither upon it, but not removing from its place.
The slothful hideth his hand in his bosom; it grieveth him to bring it again to his mouth.
The sluggard is wiser in his own conceit than seven men that can render a reason.
26:16 A reason - A satisfactory reason of ail their actions.
He that passeth by, and meddleth with strife belonging not to him, is like one that taketh a dog by the ears.
26:17 He - Who is going upon the way. With strife - In which he is not concerned, nor any way obliged to meddle. That taketh - Exposes himself to needless hazard.
As a mad man who casteth firebrands, arrows, and death,
26:18 And death - Any instruments of death.
So is the man that deceiveth his neighbour, and saith, Am not I in sport?
Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.
As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire; so is a contentious man to kindle strife.
The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.
Burning lips and a wicked heart are like a potsherd covered with silver dross.
26:23 Burning - With malice or hatred: A slanderous or evil tongue. Dross - Such a tongue and heart are of no real worth, although sometimes they make a shew of it, as dross does of silver.
He that hateth dissembleth with his lips, and layeth up deceit within him;
When he speaketh fair, believe him not: for there are seven abominations in his heart.
Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the whole congregation.
26:26 Deceit - With false professions of love.
Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him.
26:27 Rolleth - Up the hill with design to do mischief to some person.
A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.