My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with you.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Proverbs 7:4 of the young man as he goes on his way through life. See Proverbs 8 in the introduction.
Pr 7:1-27. The subject continued, by a delineation of the arts of strange women, as a caution to the unwary.
1-4. Similar calls (Pr 3:1-3; 4:10, &c.).Solomon again persuadeth to keep his laws, and delight in wisdom, Proverbs 7:1-5. A young man void of understanding is insnared by a harlot, Proverbs 7:6-9. A description of a harlot, Proverbs 7:10,11, from her practice, Proverbs 7:12,13. Of her subtlety, Proverbs 7:14-20; by which she gained compliance to her desire, Proverbs 7:21,22. The danger of it, set forth under the similitude of a bird, Proverbs 7:23. He craveth their attention, Proverbs 7:24; and dehorteth from uncleanness, Proverbs 7:25-27.
and lay up my commandments with thee: as a treasure in his heart, to be brought out upon occasion; to be kept as valuable, and made use of as an antidote against and a preservative from sinning; see Psalm 119:11. The Septuagint and Arabic versions add, what is not in the Hebrew text,
"son, honour the Lord, and thou shalt be strong;''
the Arabic adds,My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)1. The LXX. add at the end of this verse,
“My son, fear the Lord and thou shalt be strong,
And beside him, fear none other.”
Proverbs 7:1-4] Compare the similar exhortations Proverbs 1:8-9, Proverbs 2:1-5, Proverbs 3:1; Proverbs 3:3; Proverbs 3:21-22, Proverbs 4:20-21, Proverbs 6:20-23.Verses 1-27. - 13. Thirteenth admonitory discourse, containing a warning against adultery, treated under a different aspect from previous exhortations, and strengthened by an example. In this chapter and the following a contrast is drawn between the adulteress and Wisdom. Verse 1. - My son, keep my words. The teacher enjoins his pupil, as in Proverbs 2:1, to observe the rules which he gives. Lay up, as a precious treasure (see on Proverbs 2:1 and 7). The LXX. adds here a distich which is not in the Hebrew or in any other version, and is not germane to the context, however excellent in itself: "My son, honour the Lord, and thou shalt be strong, and beside him feat no other." With this we may compare Luke 12:5 and Isaiah 8:12, 13.
30 One does not treat the thief scornfully if he steals
To satisfy his craving when he is hungry;
31 Being seized, he may restore sevenfold,
Give up the whole wealth of his house.
For the most part 30a is explained: even when this is the case, one does not pass it over in the thief as a bagatelle. Ewald remarks: בּוּז ל stands here in its nearest signification of overlooking, whence first follows that of contemning. But this "nearest" signification is devised wholly in favour of this passage; - the interpretation, "they do not thus let the thief pass," is set aside by Sol 8:1, Sol 8:7; for by 31b, cf. Sol 8:7, and 34a, cf. Sol 8:6, it is proved that from Proverbs 6:30 on, reminiscences from the Canticles, which belong to the literature of the Chokma, find their way into the Mashal language of the author. Hitzig's correct supposition, that בּוּז ל always signifies positive contemning, does not necessitate the interrogative interpretation: "Does not one despise the thief if...?" Thus to be understood, the author ought to have written אף כי or גם כי. Michaelis rightly: furtum licet merito pro infami in republica habetur, tamen si cum adulterio comparatur, minus probrosum est. Regarding נפשׁ in the sense of appetite, and even throat and stomach, vid., Psychologie, p. 204. A second is, that the thief, if he is seized (but we regard ונמצא not as the hypoth. perf., but as the part. deprehensus), may make compensation for this crime. The fut. ישׁלּם thus to be understood as the potential lies near from this, that a sevenfold compensation of the thing stolen is unheard of in the Israelitish law; it knows only of a twofold, fourfold, fivefold restoration, Exodus 21:37; Exodus 22:1-3, Exodus 22:8 (cf. Saalschtz, Mos. Recht, p. 554ff.). This excess over that which the law rendered necessary leads into the region of free-will: he (the thief, by which we are now only to think of him whom bitter necessity has made such) may make compensation sevenfold, i.e., superabundantly; he may give up the whole possessions (vid., on הון at Proverbs 1:13) of his house, so as not merely to satisfy the law, but to appease him against whom he has done wrong, and again to gain for himself an honoured name. What is said in Proverbs 6:30 and Proverbs 6:31 is perfectly just. One does not contemn a man who is a thief through poverty, he is pitied; while the adulterer goes to ruin under all circumstances of contempt and scorn. And: theft may be made good, and that abundantly; but adultery and its consequences are irreparable.
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