Verse 1: There is great hope of those that reverence their parents.
There is little hope of any who will not hear those that deal
faithfully with them. (2). By our words we must be justified or
condemned, (Mt 12:37). (3). He that thinks before he speaks,
that suppresses evil if he have thought it, keeps his soul from
a great deal both of guilt and grief. Many a one is ruined by an
ungoverned tongue. (4). The slothful desire the gains the
diligent get, but hate the pains the diligent take; therefore
they have nothing. This is especially true as to the soul. (5).
Where sin reigns, the man is loathsome. If his conscience were
awake, he would abhor himself, and repent in dust and ashes.
(6). An honest desire to do right, preserves a man from fatal
mistakes, better than a thousand fine-drawn distinctions. (7).
Some who are really poor, trade and spend as if they were rich:
this is sin, and will be shame, and it will end accordingly.
Some that are really rich, would be thought to be poor: in this
there is want of gratitude to God, want of justice and charity
to others. There are many hypocrites, empty of grace, who will
not be convinced of their poverty. There are many fearing
Christians, who are spiritually rich, yet think themselves poor;
by their doubts, and complaints, and griefs, they make
themselves poor. (8). Great riches often tempt to violence
against those that possess them; but the poor are free from such
perils. (9). The light of the righteous is as that of the sun,
which may be eclipsed and clouded, but will continue: the Spirit
is their Light, he gives a fulness of joy: that of the wicked is
as a lamp of their own kindling, easily put out. (10). All
contentions, whether between private persons, families,
churches, or nations, are begun and carried forward by pride.
Disputes would be easily prevented or ended, if it were not for
pride. (11). Wealth gotten by dishonesty or vice, has a secret
curse, which will speedily waste it. (12). The delay of what is
anxiously hoped for, is very painful to the mind; obtaining it
is very pleasant. But spiritual blessings are chiefly intended.
(13). He that stands in awe of God, and reverences his word,
shall escape destruction, and be rewarded for his godly fear.
(14). The rule by which the wise regulate their conduct, is a
fountain yielding life and happiness. (15). The way of sinners
is hard upon others, and hard to the sinner himself. The service
of sin is slavery; the road to hell is strewed with the thorns
and thistles that followed the curse. (16). It is folly to talk
of things of which we know nothing, and to undertake what we are
no way fit for. (17). Those that are wicked, and false to Christ
and to the souls of men, do mischief, and fall into mischief;
but those that are faithful, find sound words healing to others
and to themselves. (18). He that scorns to be taught, will
certainly be brought down. (19). There are in man strong desires
after happiness; but never let those expect any thing truly
sweet to their souls, who will not be persuaded to leave their
sins. (20). Multitudes are brought to ruin by bad company. And
all that make themselves wicked will be destroyed. (21). When
God pursues sinners he is sure to overtake them; and he will
reward the righteous. (22). The servant of God who is not
anxious about riches, takes the best method of providing for his
children. (23). The poor, yet industrious, thrive, though in a
homely manner, while those who have great riches are often
brought to poverty for want of judgment. (24). He acts as if he
hated his child, who, by false indulgence, permits sinful habits
to gather strength, which will bring sorrow here, and misery
hereafter. (25). It is the misery of the wicked, that even their
sensual appetites are always craving. The righteous feeds on the
word and ordinances, to the satisfying of his soul with the
promises of the gospel, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the
Bread of life.