Proverbs 17:23
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
The wicked accepts a bribe in secret to pervert the ways of justice.

King James Bible
A wicked man taketh a gift out of the bosom to pervert the ways of judgment.

American Standard Version
A wicked man receiveth a bribe out of the bosom, To pervert the ways of justice.

Douay-Rheims Bible
The wicked man taketh gifts out of the bosom, that he may pervert the paths of judgment.

English Revised Version
A wicked man taketh a gift out of the bosom, to pervert the ways of judgment.

Webster's Bible Translation
A wicked man taketh a gift out of the bosom to pervert the ways of judgment.

Proverbs 17:23 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

17 At all times the right friend shows himself loving;

     And as a brother is he born for adversity.

Brother is more than friend, he stands to one nearer than a friend does, Psalm 35:14; but the relation of a friend may deepen itself into a spiritual, moral brotherhood, Psalm 18:24, and there is no name of friend that sounds dearer than אחי, 2 Samuel 1:26. 17a and 17b are, according to this, related to each other climactically. The friend meant in 17a is a true friend. Of no other is it said that he loves בּכל־עת, i.e., makes his love manifest; and also the article in הרע not only here gives to the word more body, but stamps it as an ideal-word: the friend who corresponds to the idea of such an one.

(Note: The Arab. grammarians say that the article in this case stands, l'astfrâgh khsânas âljnas, as an exhaustive expression of all essential properties of the genus, i.e., to express the full ideal realization of the idea in that which is named.)

The inf. of the Hiph., in the sense "to associate" (Ewald), cannot therefore be הרע, because רע is not derived from רעע, but from רעה. Thus there exists no contrast between 17a and 17b, so that the love of a friend is thought of, in contradistinction to that of a brother, as without permanency (Fl.); but 17b means that the true friend shows himself in the time of need, and that thus the friendship becomes closer, like that between brothers. The statements do not refer to two kinds of friends; this is seen from the circumstance that אח has not the article, as הרע has. It is not the subj. but pred., as אדם, Job 11:12 : sooner is a wild ass born or born again as a man. The meaning of הוּלד there, as at Psalm 87:5., borders on the notion of regenerari; here the idea is not essentially much less, for by the saying that the friend is born in the time of need, as a brother, is meant that he then for the first time shows himself as a friend, he receives the right status or baptism of such an one, and is, as it were, born into personal brotherly relationship to the sorely-tried friend. The translation comprobatur (Jerome) and erfunden [is found out] (Luther) obliterates the peculiar and thus intentional expression, for נולד is not at all a metaphor used for passing into the light - the two passages in Proverbs and in Job have not their parallel. לצרה is not equivalent to בּצרה (cf. Psalm 9:10; Psalm 10:1), for the interchange of the prep. in 17a and 17b would then be without any apparent reason. But Hitzig's translation also: as a brother he is born of adversity, is impossible, for ל after נודל and ילּד always designates that for which the birth is an advantage, not that from which it proceeds. Thus ל will be that of the purpose: for the purpose of the need, - not indeed to suffer (Job 5:7) on account of it, but to bear it in sympathy, and to help to bear it. Rightly Fleischer: frater autem ad aerumnam (sc. levandam et removendam) nascitur. The lxx gives this sense to the ל: ἀδελφοὶ δὲ ἐν ἀνάγκαις χρήσιμοι ἔστωσαν, τοῦτο γὰρ χάριν γεννῶνται.

Proverbs 17:23 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Proverbs 17:8 A gift is as a precious stone in the eyes of him that has it: wherever it turns, it prospers.

Proverbs 18:16 A man's gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men.

Proverbs 21:14 A gift in secret pacifies anger: and a reward in the bosom strong wrath.

Exodus 23:8 And you shall take no gift: for the gift blinds the wise, and perverts the words of the righteous.

Deuteronomy 16:19 You shall not wrest judgment; you shall not respect persons, neither take a gift: for a gift does blind the eyes of the wise...

1 Samuel 8:3 And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment.

1 Samuel 12:3 Behold, here I am: witness against me before the LORD, and before his anointed: whose ox have I taken? or whose donkey have I taken?...

Isaiah 1:23 Your princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loves gifts, and follows after rewards: they judge not the fatherless...

Ezekiel 22:12 In you have they taken gifts to shed blood; you have taken usury and increase...

Micah 7:3 That they may do evil with both hands earnestly, the prince asks, and the judge asks for a reward; and the great man...

Mark 14:10,11 And Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve, went to the chief priests, to betray him to them...

Cross References
Exodus 23:8
And you shall take no bribe, for a bribe blinds the clear-sighted and subverts the cause of those who are in the right.

Deuteronomy 16:19
You shall not pervert justice. You shall not show partiality, and you shall not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and subverts the cause of the righteous.

Proverbs 17:8
A bribe is like a magic stone in the eyes of the one who gives it; wherever he turns he prospers.

Ecclesiastes 7:7
Surely oppression drives the wise into madness, and a bribe corrupts the heart.

Micah 3:11
Its heads give judgment for a bribe; its priests teach for a price; its prophets practice divination for money; yet they lean on the LORD and say, "Is not the LORD in the midst of us? No disaster shall come upon us."

Micah 7:3
Their hands are on what is evil, to do it well; the prince and the judge ask for a bribe, and the great man utters the evil desire of his soul; thus they weave it together.

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