And they said to her, Surely we will return with you to your people.…
1. Promises of speech and purposes of spirit should walk hand in hand together. None ought to promise with their mouths what they do not purpose with their hearts; this is to be fraudulent and deceitful, which is destructive to human society. God's children are all such as will not lie (Isaiah 63:8), to say and unsay, or to say one thing and think another, to blow hot and cold with one blast. Ye that have promised to give up yourselves to Christ, and to go with Him in ways of holiness, it must be your purpose to depart from iniquity (2 Timothy 2:19; Revelation 14:4; Hosea 2:7).
2. Promises of the mouth, yea, and purposes of the mind, do oft proceed from passion, and not from principle. So did Orpah's here; it was only a pang of passion which the discreet matron prudently distrusts, and therefore tries them both with powerful dissuasives. Thus Saul in a passion promised fairly to David (1 Samuel 24:16, 17, and 1 Samuel 26:21), and David discovered all those fair promises to proceed more from sudden passion than from fixed principles; therefore did he distrust both his talk and his tears. Hereupon David gets him up into the hold, well knowing there was little hold to be taken at such passionate promises and protestations (1 Samuel 24:22). Yea, and out of the land too, as not daring to trust his reconciliation in passion and strong conviction without any true conversion (1 Samuel 26:25, and 1 Samuel 27:1,2,4), otherwise his malice had been restless and he faithless.
3. Purposes and promises that proceed from passion, and not from principle, do soon dwindle away into nothing. Thus did Orpah's (ver. 14), who said with that son in the parable (Matthew 21:30), "I go, sir"; yea, but when, sir? So here, it is certain we will return with thee, was enough uncertain. It is a maxim, second thoughts are better than first, but Orpah's first were better than her second; her purposes and promises do dwindle away and vanish into smoke.
Parallel VersesKJV: And they said unto her, Surely we will return with thee unto thy people.