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A Commentary, Critical, Practical, and Explanatory on the Old and New Testaments, by Robert Jamieson, A.R. Fausset and David Brown [1882] at

Proverbs Chapter 25

Proverbs 25:1

pro 25:1

(Pro. 25:1-28)

The character of these proverbs sustains the title (see Introduction).

also--refers to the former part of the book.

copied out--literally, "transferred," that is, from some other book to this; not given from memory.

Proverbs 25:2

pro 25:2

God's unsearchableness impresses us with awe (compare Isa 45:15; Rom 11:33). But kings, being finite, should confer with wise counsellors;

Proverbs 25:3

pro 25:3

Ye wisely keeping state secrets, which to common men are as inaccessible heights and depths.

Proverbs 25:4

pro 25:4

As separating impurities from ore leaves pure silver, so taking from a king wicked counsellors leaves a wise and beneficent government.

Proverbs 25:5

pro 25:5

before--or, "in presence of," as courtiers stood about a king.

Proverbs 25:6

pro 25:6

Do not intrude into the presence of the king, for the elevation of the humble is honorable, but the humbling of the proud disgraceful (Luk 14:8-10).

Proverbs 25:8

pro 25:8

(Compare Pro 3:30).

lest . . . shame--lest you do what you ought not, when shamed by defeat, or "lest thou art shut out from doing any thing."

Proverbs 25:9

pro 25:9

(Compare Mat 5:25, Margin).

secret--that is, of your opponent, for his disadvantage, and so you be disgraced, not having discussed your difficulties with him.

Proverbs 25:11

pro 25:11

a word fitly--literally, "quickly," as wheels roll, just in time. The comparison as apples . . . silver gives a like sense.

apples, &c.--either real apples of golden color, in a silver network basket, or imitations on silver embroidery.

Proverbs 25:12

pro 25:12

Those who desire to know and do rightly, most highly esteem good counsel (Pro 9:9; Pro 15:31). The listening ear is better than one hung with gold.

Proverbs 25:13

pro 25:13

Snow from mountains was used to cool drinks; so refreshing is a faithful messenger (Pro 13:17).

Proverbs 25:14

pro 25:14

clouds--literally, "vapors" (Jer 10:13), clouds only in appearance.

a false gift--promised, but not given.

Proverbs 25:15

pro 25:15

Gentleness and kindness overcome the most powerful and obstinate.

long forbearing--or, "slowness to anger" (Pro 14:29; Pro 15:18).

Proverbs 25:16

pro 25:16

A comparison, as a surfeit of honey produces physical disgust, so your company, however agreeable in moderation, may, if excessive, lead your friend to hate you.

Proverbs 25:18

pro 25:18

A false witness is as destructive to reputation, as such weapons to the body (Pro 24:28).

beareth . . . witness--literally, "answereth questions," as before a judge, against his neighbor.

Proverbs 25:19

pro 25:19

Treachery annoys as well as deceives.

Proverbs 25:20

pro 25:20

Not only is the incongruity of songs (that is, joyful) and sadness meant, but an accession of sadness, by want of sympathy, is implied.

Proverbs 25:21

pro 25:21

(Compare Mat 5:44; Rom 12:20). As metals are melted by heaping coals upon them, so is the heart softened by kindness.

Proverbs 25:23

pro 25:23

Better, "As the north wind bringeth forth (Psa 90:2) or produces rain, so does a concealed or slandering tongue produce anger."

Proverbs 25:24

pro 25:24

(Compare Pro 21:9, Pro 21:19).

Proverbs 25:25

pro 25:25

(Compare Pro 25:13).

good news--that is, of some loved interest or absent friend, the more grateful as coming from afar.

Proverbs 25:26

pro 25:26

From troubled fountains and corrupt springs no healthy water is to be had, so when the righteous are oppressed by the wicked, their power for good is lessened or destroyed.

Proverbs 25:27

pro 25:27

Satiety surfeits (Pro 25:16); so men who are self-glorious find shame.

is not glory--"not" is supplied from the first clause, or "is grievous," in which sense a similar word is used (Pro 27:2).

Proverbs 25:28

pro 25:28

Such are exposed to the incursions of evil thoughts and successful temptations.

Next: Proverbs Chapter 26