Proverbs 20:17
New International Version
Food gained by fraud tastes sweet, but one ends up with a mouth full of gravel.

New Living Translation
Stolen bread tastes sweet, but it turns to gravel in the mouth.

English Standard Version
Bread gained by deceit is sweet to a man, but afterward his mouth will be full of gravel.

Berean Study Bible
Food gained by fraud is sweet to a man, but later his mouth is full of gravel.

New American Standard Bible
Bread obtained by falsehood is sweet to a man, But afterward his mouth will be filled with gravel.

King James Bible
Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

Christian Standard Bible
Food gained by fraud is sweet to a person, but afterward his mouth is full of gravel.

Contemporary English Version
The food you get by cheating may taste delicious, but it turns to gravel.

Good News Translation
What you get by dishonesty you may enjoy like the finest food, but sooner or later it will be like a mouthful of sand.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Food gained by fraud is sweet to a man, but afterward his mouth is full of gravel.

International Standard Version
Bread gained by deceit is sweet to a man, but later his mouth will be full of gravel.

NET Bible
Bread gained by deceit tastes sweet to a person, but afterward his mouth will be filled with gravel.

New Heart English Bible
Fraudulent food is sweet to a man, but afterwards his mouth is filled with gravel.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
He pledges security to a man with deceitful bread, and after that, his mouth will be filled with pebbles.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Food gained dishonestly tastes sweet to a person, but afterwards his mouth will be filled with gravel.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Bread of falsehood is sweet to a man; But afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

New American Standard 1977
Bread obtained by falsehood is sweet to a man, But afterward his mouth will be filled with gravel.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Bread of deceit is sweet to a man, but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

King James 2000 Bible
Bread gained by deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

American King James Version
Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

American Standard Version
Bread of falsehood is sweet to a man; But afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

Douay-Rheims Bible
The bread of lying is sweet to a man: but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

Darby Bible Translation
Bread of falsehood is sweet to a man, but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

English Revised Version
Bread of falsehood is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

Webster's Bible Translation
Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

World English Bible
Fraudulent food is sweet to a man, but afterwards his mouth is filled with gravel.

Young's Literal Translation
Sweet to a man is the bread of falsehood, And afterwards is his mouth filled with gravel.
Study Bible
Wine is a Mocker
16Take the garment of the one who posts security for a stranger; get collateral if it is for a wayward woman. 17Food gained by fraud is sweet to a man, but later his mouth is full of gravel. 18Set plans by consultation, and wage war under sound guidance.…
Cross References
Proverbs 9:17
"Stolen water is sweet, and bread eaten in secret is tasty!"

Proverbs 20:16
Take the garment of the one who posts security for a stranger; get collateral if it is for a wayward woman.

Lamentations 3:16
He has ground my teeth with gravel and trampled me in the dust.

Treasury of Scripture

Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.







Lexicon
Food
לֶ֣חֶם (le·ḥem)
Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's Hebrew 3899: Food, bread, grain

gained by fraud
שָׁ֑קֶר (šā·qer)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 8267: Deception, disappointment, falsehood

is sweet
עָרֵ֣ב (‘ā·rêḇ)
Adjective - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 6149: To be sweet or pleasing

to a man,
לָ֭אִישׁ (lā·’îš)
Preposition-l, Article | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 376: A man as an individual, a male person

but later
וְ֝אַחַ֗ר (wə·’a·ḥar)
Conjunctive waw | Adverb
Strong's Hebrew 310: The hind or following part

his mouth
פִ֥יהוּ (p̄î·hū)
Noun - masculine singular construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 6310: The mouth, edge, portion, side, according to

is full of
יִמָּֽלֵא־ (yim·mā·lê-)
Verb - Nifal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 4390: To fill, be full of

gravel.
חָצָֽץ׃ (ḥā·ṣāṣ)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 2687: Something cutting, gravel, an arrow
Verse 17. - Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; Revised Version, bread of falsehood; i.e. bread gained without labour, or by unrighteous means (comp. Proverbs 10:2). This is agreeable because it is easily won, and has the relish of forbidden fruit. "Wickedness is sweet in his mouth" (Job 20:12). But afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel. He will find in his "bread" no nourishment, but rather discomfort and positive injury (comp. Job 20:14). The expression, "to eat gravel," is intimated in Lamentations 3:16, "He hath broken my teeth with gravel stones;" it implies grievous disappointment and unprofitableness. See here a warning against evil plesaures -

Φεῦγ ἡδονὴν φέρουσαν ὕστερον βλάβην

"Sperne voluptates: nocet empta dolore voluptas." Oort supposes that the gnome in the text is derived from a riddle, which asked, "What is sweet at first, but afterwards like sand in the mouth?" 20:7. A good man is not liable to uneasiness in contriving what he shall do, or in reflecting on what he has done, as those who walk in deceit. And his family fare better for his sake. 8. If great men are good men, they may do much good, and prevent very much evil. 9. Some can say, Through grace, we are cleaner than we have been; but it was the work of the Holy Spirit. 10. See the various deceits men use, of which the love of money is the root. The Lord will not bless what is thus gotten. 11. Parents should observe their children, that they may manage them accordingly. 12. All our powers and faculties are from God, and are to be employed for him. 13. Those that indulge themselves, may expect to want necessaries, which should have been gotten by honest labour. 14. Men use arts to get a good bargain, and to buy cheap; whereas a man ought to be ashamed of a fraud and a lie. 15. He that prefers true knowledge to riches, follows the ways of religion and happiness. If we really believed this truth, the word of God would be valued as it deserves, and the world would lose its tempting influence. 16. Those ruin themselves who entangle themselves in rash suretiship. Also those who are in league with abandoned women. Place no confidence in either. 17. Wealth gotten by fraud may be sweet, for the carnal mind takes pleasure in the success of wicked devices; but it will be bitter in the reflection. 18. Especially we need advice in spiritual warfare. The word and Spirit of God are the best counsellors in every point. 19. Those dearly buy their own praise, who put confidence in a man because he speaks fairly. 20. An undutiful child will become very miserable. Never let him expect any peace or comfort. 21. An estate suddenly raised, is often as suddenly ruined. 22. Wait on the Lord, attend his pleasure, and he will protect thee.
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