Proverbs 26:20
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down.

King James Bible
Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.

Darby Bible Translation
Where no wood is, the fire goeth out; and where there is no talebearer, the contention ceaseth.

World English Bible
For lack of wood a fire goes out. Without gossip, a quarrel dies down.

Young's Literal Translation
Without wood is fire going out, And without a tale-bearer, contention ceaseth,

Proverbs 26:20 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out - The tale-receiver and the tale-bearer are the agents of discord. If none received the slander in the first instance, it could not be propagated. Hence our proverb, "The receiver is as bad as the thief." And our laws treat them equally; for the receiver of stolen goods, knowing them to be stolen, is hanged, as well as he who stole them.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

where no wood is or without wood

Proverbs 26:22 The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.

Proverbs 16:28 A fraudulent man sows strife: and a whisperer separates chief friends.

Proverbs 22:10 Cast out the scorner, and contention shall go out; yes, strife and reproach shall cease.

James 3:6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defiles the whole body...

tale-bearer or whisperer is silent

One Lion Two Lions no Lion at All
A sermon (No. 1670) delivered on Thursday Evening, June 8th, 1882, at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington, by C. H. Spurgeon. "The slothful man saith, There is a lion without, I shall be slain in the streets."--Proverbs 22:13. "The slothful man saith, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets."--Proverbs 26:13. This slothful man seems to cherish that one dread of his about the lions, as if it were his favorite aversion and he felt it to be too much trouble to invent another excuse.
C.H. Spurgeon—Sermons on Proverbs

Many specimens of the so-called Wisdom Literature are preserved for us in the book of Proverbs, for its contents are by no means confined to what we call proverbs. The first nine chapters constitute a continuous discourse, almost in the manner of a sermon; and of the last two chapters, ch. xxx. is largely made up of enigmas, and xxxi. is in part a description of the good housewife. All, however, are rightly subsumed under the idea of wisdom, which to the Hebrew had always moral relations. The Hebrew
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

Cross References
James 3:5
Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.

Leviticus 19:16
"'Do not go about spreading slander among your people. "'Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor's life. I am the LORD.

Proverbs 16:28
A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends.

Proverbs 22:10
Drive out the mocker, and out goes strife; quarrels and insults are ended.

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