The Wise and the Foolish
Proverbs 13:16
Every prudent man deals with knowledge: but a fool lays open his folly.

I. THE WISE MAN. "He dealeth with knowledge." This implies —

1. That he has knowledge. Knowledge is essential to a wise man. All true knowledge has its foundation in God. There is no knowledge that includes Him not. It implies —

2. That a wise man treats his knowledge wisely. "He dealeth with knowledge." A man may have a great deal of knowledge, and no wisdom. Wisdom consists in the right application of knowledge. The wise man so deals with his knowledge as to culture his own nature and promote the real progress of his race. "Perfect freedom," says , "hath four parts — viz., wisdom, the principle of doing things aright; justice, the principle of doing things equally in public and private; fortitude, the principle of not flying danger, but meeting it; and temperance, the principle of subduing desires, and living moderately."

II. THE FOOLISH MAN. Foolish men show their folly in at least two ways.

1. By talking about things of which they know little or nothing. There are two notable facts in human nature. Empty-minded persons are generally talkative. The thinker, discerning difficulties in every turn, moves cautiously, reverently, and even with hesitation.

2. By attempting things which they are incapable of achieving. The foolish man knows not his aptitudes and inaptitudes. Hence he is seen everywhere, striving to be what he never can be; to do that which he never can accomplish.

(D. Thomas, D.D.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open his folly.

WEB: Every prudent man acts from knowledge, but a fool exposes folly.

Warning Against Transgressors' Ways
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