Proverbs 26:28
A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.
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(28) A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it.—As the remembrance of them calls up his own wickedness to the mind of the offender. This is one reason why “the carnal mind is enmity against God” (Romans 8:7), as being conscious of having rejected God’s love, and so hating to be reminded of Him.

Proverbs 26:28. A lying tongue hateth, &c. — That is, he who slanders others hates those whom he slanders, because, by his calumnies, he hath made them his enemies. For “it is common for men to hate those to whom they have done evil: thus Tacitus, Proprium humani ingenii est, odisse quem læseris, ‘It is natural to man to hate one whom he hath injured;’ and this aversion is always strong in proportion to the greatness and injustice of the wrong which has been done.” See Calmet. And a flattering mouth worketh ruin — Though it be more smooth and plausible than a slandering mouth, yet it is, in truth, no less pernicious, betraying others either to sin, or to danger and calamity.

26:24-26. Always distrust when a man speaks fair unless you know him well. Satan, in his temptations, speaks fair, as he did to Eve; but it is madness to give credit to him. 27. What pains men take to do mischief to others! but it is digging a pit, it is rolling a stone, hard work; and they prepare mischief to themselves. 28. There are two sorts of lies equally detestable. A slandering lie, the mischief of this every body sees. A flattering lie, which secretly works ruin. A wise man will be more afraid of a flatterer than of a slanderer.The lying tongue hates its victims. 28. Men hate those they injure.

A lying tongue—"lips" for the persons (compare Pr 4:24; Ps 12:3).

Hateth those that are afflicted by it, because by his calumnies he hath made them his enemies.

A flattering mouth; which, though it be more smooth and plausible than a slandering mouth, yet is in truth no less pernicious, betraying others either to sin, or to danger and mischief.

A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it,.... That is, a man of a lying tongue, that is given to lying, hates those that are hurt and crushed by his lies; the reason why he hurts them with his lies is because he hates them; and, having hurt them, he hates them, being made his enemies, and from whom he may expect and be in fear of revenge: moreover, he hates those that are troubled at and disturbed with his lies; or the "contrite" (p) and humble men: or those who "smite" or "strike" (q) him, as some render the word, actively; that is, reprove him, and bring him to shame for lying. The words are by some translated, a "contrite" person, or everyone of "the contrite ones, hateth a lying tongue" (r); such as are of a broken and of a contrite spirit, and that tremble at the word of God, or are hurt by lies, these abhor a liar. The Targum is,

"a lying tongue bates the ways of truth;''

and the Septuagint, Syriac, and Arabic versions, render it, "a lying tongue hate truth"; and so the Vulgate Latin version, "a lying tongue loves not truth"; for nothing is more contrary to a lie than truth;

and a flattering mouth worketh ruin; both to itself and to the persons flattered by it: or, "makes an impulse" (s); a pushing, a driving away; it drives away such as cannot bear its flatteries: and pushes on such that are taken with it, both into sin and into ruin.

(p) "contritos suos", Montanus, Michaelis. (q) "Percutientes", Gejerus. (r) "Linguam falsitatis odit quisque contritorum ejus", Cocceius Lexic. col. 158. "quisque contritorum ab ea", ibid. version. (s) "expulsionem", Pagninus, Montanus; "impulsum sive lapsum", Vatablus; "impulsionem", Tigurine version, Mercerus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Gejerus, Michaelis, Schultens.

A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.
28. Comp. “Proprium humani ingenii est odisse quem læseris.” Tacitus, Agric., cap. 42.

Verse 28. - A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; or, those whom it crusheth (Proverbs 25:15). There is a consensus of the Vulgate, Septuagint, Syriac, and Targum to translate דכיו "truth," thinking apparently of the Aramaean דַכְיָא "that which is pure." But the hemistich would thus state the baldest truism, and modern commentators unite in assigning to the word some such sense as that given above in the Authorized Version. A liar shows his want of charity by slandering his neighbour; and that men dislike those whom they have injured is a common experience. "It is a characteristic of human nature," says Tacitus ('Agric.,' 42), "to hate those whom one has injured." Seneca, 'De Ira,' 2:83, "Hoe habent pessimum animi magna fortuna insolentes, quos laeserunt, et oderunt." A flattering mouth worketh ruin; brings destruction on those who succumb to its seductive words. Vulgate, Os lubricum operatur ruinas; Septuagint, "A mouth uncovered (ἄστεγον) causeth tumults." (For "the smooth mouth," comp. ch. 5:3; Psalm 12:3; Psalm 55:21; Isaiah 30:10.) The word for "tumults" is ἀκαταστασίας, which does not occur elsewhere in the Septuagint, but is common in the New Testament; e.g., Luke 21:9; 1 Corinthians 14:33.

Proverbs 26:2828 The lying tongue hateth those whom it bruiseth;

     And a flattering mouth causeth ruin.

The lxx, Jerome, the Targ., and Syr. render ישׂנא דכיו in the sense of non amat veritatem; they appear by דכיו to have thought of the Aram. דכיא, that which is pure; and thus they gain nothing else but an undeniable plain thought. Many Jewish interpreters gloss: מוכיחיו, also after the Aram.: דּכּיו equals מדכּיו; but the Aram. דּכּי does not mean pure in the sense of being right, therefore Elia Wilna understands him who desires to justify himself, and this violent derivation from the Aram. thus does not lead to the end. Luther, translating: "a false tongue hates those who punish it," explains, as also Gesenius, conterentes equals castigantes ipsam; but דּך signifies, according to the usage of the language before us, "bruised" (vid., Psalm 9:10), not: bruising; and the thought that the liar hates him who listens to him, leads ad absurdum; but that he does not love him who bruises (punishes) him, is self-evident. Kimchi sees in דּכּיו another form of דּכּא; and Meri, Jona Gerundi in his ethical work (שׁערי תשׁובה equals The gates of Repentance), and others, accordingly render דכיו in the sense of ענו (עניו): the lying tongue hates - as Lwenstein translates - the humble [pious]; also that for דכּיו, by the omission of ו, דכּי equals זכּי may be read, is supposable; but this does not harmonize with the second half of the proverb, according to which לשׁון שׁקר must be the subject, and ישׂנא דכיו must express some kind of evil which proceeds from such a tongue. Ewald: "the lying tongue hates its master (אדניו)," but that is not in accordance with the Heb. style; the word in that case should have been בּעליו. Hitzig countenances this אדניו, with the remark that the tongue is here personified; but personified, the tongue certainly means him who has it (Psalm 120:3). Bttcher's conjecture ישׁנּא דכיו, "confounds their talk," is certainly a curiosity. Spoken of the sea, those words would mean, "it changes its surge." But is it then at all necessary to uncover first the meaning of 28a? Rashi, Arama, and others refer דכּיו to דּכּים equals נדכּאים (מדכּים). Thus also perhaps the Venet., which translates τοὺς ἐπιτριμμοὺς (not: ἐπιτετριμμένους) αὐτῆς. C. B. Michaelis: Lingua falsitatis odio habet contritos suos, h. e. eos quos falsitate ac mendacio laedit contritosque facit. Hitzig objects that it is more correct to say: conterit perosos sibi. And certainly this lay nearer, on which account Fleischer remarks: in 28a there is to be supposed a poetic transposition of the ideas (Hypallage): homo qui lingua ad calumnias abutitur conterit eos quos odit. The poet makes ישׂנא the main conception, because it does not come to him so readily to say that the lying tongue bruises those against whom it is directed, as that it is hatred, which is active in this. To say this was by no means superfluous. There are men who find pleasure in repeating and magnifying scandalously that which is depreciatory and disadvantageous to their neighbour unsubstantiated, without being at all conscious of any particular ill-will or personal enmity against him; but this proverb says that such untruthful tongue-thrashing proceeds always from a transgression of the commandment, "Thou shalt not hate thy brother," Leviticus 19:17, and not merely from the want of love, but from a state of mind which is the direct opposite of love (vid., Proverbs 10:18). Ewald finds it incongruous that 28a speaks of that which others have to suffer from the lying tongue, whereas the whole connection of this proverb requires that the tongue should here be regarded as bringing ruin upon its owner himself. But of the destruction which the wicked tongue prepares for others many proverbs also speak, e.g., Proverbs 12:13, cf. Proverbs 17:4, לשׁון הוּת; and 28b does not mention that the smooth tongue (written וּפה־חלק with Makkeph) brings injury upon itself (an idea which must be otherwise expressed; cf. Proverbs 14:32), but that it brings injury and ruin on those who have pleasure in its flatteries (חלקות, Psalm 12:3; Isaiah 30:10), and are befooled thereby: os blandiloquum (blanditiis dolum tegens) ad casum impellit, sc. alios (Fleischer).

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