Proverbs 19 Commentary

Lessons heeded and ignored (19:1-29)

Moral uprightness is more important than wealth, and wise action is more important than hasty action. People are foolish when they blame God for the trouble they bring upon themselves through their own mistakes (19:1-3).

Often the reason the rich have many friends is that these ‘friends’ hope to gain personally from their wealth or influence (4-6). The poor lose their friends, though in a sense they are rich if they maintain their understanding (7-8). People should behave in a way that befits their social status, though to misrepresent the truth is always wrong (9-10). If they are mature, they will not allow themselves to be easily offended and will know how to control their temper (11-12).

Stupidity, quarrelling, laziness and a lack of parental discipline will destroy family happiness. Wise, sympathetic, yet firm, dealings by the parents will build it (13-18). Bad tempered people never seem to learn, and as a result bring trouble upon themselves repeatedly (19-20).

God directs affairs in people’s lives, and desires from them reverent loyalty. He blesses the obedient, but not the lazy (21-24). Physical punishment is often the only method of correction that fools understand, but sensible people listen to rebukes and learn from them (25-29).

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