Proverbs 14:34
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin condemns any people.

King James Bible
Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.

Darby Bible Translation
Righteousness exalteth a nation; but sin is a reproach to peoples.

World English Bible
Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.

Young's Literal Translation
Righteousness exalteth a nation, And the goodliness of peoples is a sin-offering.

Proverbs 14:34 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

But sin is a reproach to any people - I am satisfied this is not the sense of the original, וחסד לאמים חטאת vechesed leummim chattath; which would be better rendered, And mercy is a sin-offering for the people. The Vulgate has, Miseros autem facit populos peccatum, "sin makes the people wretched." Ελασσονουσι δε φυλας ἁμαρτιαι; "But sins lessen the tribes." - Septuagint. So also the Syriac and Arabic. The plain meaning of the original seems to be, A national disposition to mercy appears in the sight of God as a continual sin-offering. Not that it atones for the sin of the people; but, as a sin-offering is pleasing in the sight of the God of mercy, so is a merciful disposition in a nation. This view of the verse is consistent with the purest doctrines of free grace. And what is the true sense of the words, we should take at all hazards and consequences: we shall never trench upon a sound creed by a literal interpretation of God's words. No nation has more of this spirit than the British nation. It is true, we have too many sanguinary laws; but the spirit of the people is widely different.

If any one will contend for the common version, he has my consent; and I readily agree in the saying, Sin is the reproach of any people. It is the curse and scandal of man. Though I think what I have given is the true meaning of the text.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge


Deuteronomy 4:6-8 Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations...

Deuteronomy 28:1-14 And it shall come to pass, if you shall listen diligently to the voice of the LORD your God...

Judges 2:6-14 And when Joshua had let the people go, the children of Israel went every man to his inheritance to possess the land...

Jeremiah 2:2 Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus said the LORD; I remember you, the kindness of your youth, the love of your espousals...

Hosea 13:1 When Ephraim spoke trembling, he exalted himself in Israel; but when he offended in Baal, he died.


Deuteronomy 28:15 But it shall come to pass, if you will not listen to the voice of the LORD your God...

Deuteronomy 29:18-28 Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turns away this day from the LORD our God...

Psalm 107:34 A fruitful land into barrenness, for the wickedness of them that dwell therein.

Ezekiel 16:22,23 And in all your abominations and your prostitutions you have not remembered the days of your youth, when you were naked and bore...

A Startling Statement
TEXT: "The wicked shall not be unpunished."--Prov. 11:21. There are very many passages of Scripture which ought to be read in connection with this text; as for example, "Fools make a mock at sin" (Proverbs 14:9), for only a fool would. Better trifle with the pestilence and expose one's self to the plague than to discount the blighting effects of sin. And, again, "The soul that sinneth it shall die" (Ezekiel 18:4). From this clear statement of the word of God there is no escape. Or, again, "Our
J. Wilbur Chapman—And Judas Iscariot

Sin the Mocker
'Fools make a mock at sin; but among the righteous there is favour.'--Proverbs xiv, 9. The wisdom of this Book of Proverbs is not simply intellectual, but it has its roots in reverence and obedience to God, and for its accompaniment, righteousness. The wise man is the good man, and the good man is the godly man. And as is wisdom, so its opposite, folly, is not only intellectual feebleness--the bad man is a fool, and the godless is a bad man. The greatest amount of brain-power cultivated to the highest
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Epistle xxx. To Eulogius, Bishop of Alexandria.
To Eulogius, Bishop of Alexandria. Gregory to Eulogius, &c. Our common son, the bearer of these presents, when he brought the letters of your Holiness found me sick, and has left me sick; whence it has ensued that the scanty water of my brief epistle has been hardly able to exude to the large fountain of your Blessedness. But it was a heavenly boon that, while in a state of bodily pain, I received the letter of your Holiness to lift me up with joy for the instruction of the heretics of the city
Saint Gregory the Great—the Epistles of Saint Gregory the Great

The Intercession of Christ
Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us! T he Redemption of the soul is precious. Fools make mock of sin (Proverbs 14:9) . But they will not think lightly of it, who duly consider the majesty, authority, and goodness of Him, against whom it is committed; and who are taught, by what God actually has done, what sin rendered necessary to be done, before a sinner could have a well-grounded
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 2

Cross References
Proverbs 14:33
Wisdom reposes in the heart of the discerning and even among fools she lets herself be known.

Proverbs 14:35
A king delights in a wise servant, but a shameful servant arouses his fury.

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