Verse 1: Sin makes men cowards. Whatever difficulties the righteous meet in the way of duty, they are not daunted. (2). National sins disturb the public repose. (3). If needy persons get opportunities of oppressing, their extortion will be more severe than that of the more wealthy. (4). Wicked people strengthen one another in wicked ways. (5). If a man seeks the Lord, it is a good sign that he understands much, and it is a good means of understanding more. (6). An honest, godly, poor man, is better than a wicked, ungodly, rich man; has more comfort in himself, and is a greater blessing to the world. (7). Companions of riotous men not only grieve their parents, but shame them. (8). That which is ill got, though it may increase much, will not last long. Thus the poor are repaid, and God is glorified. (9). The sinner at whose prayers God is angry, is one who obstinately refuses to obey God's commands. (10). The success of ungodly men is their own misery. (11). Rich men are so flattered, that they think themselves superior to others. (12). There is glory in the land when the righteous have liberty. (13). It is folly to indulge sin, and excuse it. He who covers his sins, shall not have any true peace. He who humbly confesses his sins, with true repentance and faith, shall find mercy from God. The Son of God is our great atonement. Under a deep sense of our guilt and danger, we may claim salvation from that mercy which reigns through righteousness unto eternal life, by Jesus Christ our Lord. (14). There is a fear which causes happiness. Faith and love will deliver from the fear of eternal misery; but we should always fear offending God, and fear sinning against him. (15). A wicked ruler, whatever we may call him, this scripture calls a roaring lion, and a ranging bear. (16). Oppressors want understanding; they do not consult their own honour, ease, and safety. (17). The murderer shall be haunted with terrors. None shall desire to save him from deserved punishment, nor pity him. (18). Uprightness will give men holy security in the worst times; but the false and dishonest are never safe. (19). Those who are diligent, take the way to live comfortably. (20). The true way to be happy, is to be holy and honest; not to raise an estate suddenly, without regard to right or wrong. (21). Judgment is perverted, when any thing but pure right is considered. (22). He that hastens to be rich, never seriously thinks how quickly God may take his wealth from him, and leave him in poverty. (23). Upon reflection, most will have a better opinion of a faithful reprover than of a soothing flatterer. (24). Here is the wickedness of those who think it no sin to rob their parents, by wheedling them or threatening them, or by wasting what they have, and running into debt. (25). Those make themselves always easy, that live in continual dependence upon God and his grace, and live by faith. (26). A fool trusts to his own strength, merit, and righteousness. And trusts to his own heart, which is not only deceitful above all things, but which has often deceived him. (27). A selfish man not only will not look out for objects of compassion, but will look off from those that call for his attention. (28). When power is put into the hands of the wicked, wise men decline public business. If the reader will go diligently over this and the other chapters, in many places where at first he may suppose there is least of Christ, still he will find what will lead to him.
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