Proverbs 7:15
Therefore came I forth to meet you, diligently to seek your face, and I have found you.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Proverbs 7:15-20. Therefore came I forth to meet thee — As not being able to take any pleasure in my feast without thy company; and I have found thee — By a happy providence of God complying with my desires, to my great joy, I have found thee speedily and most opportunely. Thus this wicked woman pretended that she came forth on purpose to meet this youth, from a peculiar affection, as if she had had a prior acquaintance and intimacy with him. I have decked my bed, &c. — She desires to inflame his lusts by the mention of the bed, and by its ornaments and perfumes. The good man is not at home — Whom she does not call her husband, lest the mention of that name should awaken his conscience or discretion. He hath taken a bag of money with him — Which is an evidence he designs to go far, and to stay a considerable time; and will come home at the day appointed — Or, at the day of full moon, as Dr. Waterland translates יום הכסא, Houbigant renders the clause, Nor will he return to his house before the full moon. The woman plainly gives this as a reason for removing all apprehensions and fears of detection from the simple youth she is soliciting to destruction. 7:6-27 Here is an affecting example of the danger of youthful lusts. It is a history or a parable of the most instructive kind. Will any one dare to venture on temptations that lead to impurity, after Solomon has set before his eyes in so lively and plain a manner, the danger of even going near them? Then is he as the man who would dance on the edge of a lofty rock, when he has just seen another fall headlong from the same place. The misery of self-ruined sinners began in disregard to God's blessed commands. We ought daily to pray that we may be kept from running into temptation, else we invite the enemies of our souls to spread snares for us. Ever avoid the neighbourhood of vice. Beware of sins which are said to be pleasant sins. They are the more dangerous, because they most easily gain the heart, and close it against repentance. Do nothing till thou hast well considered the end of it. Were a man to live as long as Methuselah, and to spend all his days in the highest delights sin can offer, one hour of the anguish and tribulation that must follow, would far outweigh them.This pretence of a religious feast gives us an insight into some strange features of popular religion under the monarchy of Judah. The harlot uses the technical word Leviticus 3:1 for the "peace-offerings," and makes them the starting-point for her sin. They have to be eaten on the same day that they are offered Leviticus 7:15-16, and she invites her victim to the feast. She who speaks is a "foreigner" who, under a show of conformity to the religion of Israel, still retains her old notions (see Proverbs 2:16 note), and a feast-day to her is nothing but a time of self-indulgence, which she may invite another to share with her. If we assume, as probable, that these harlots of Jerusalem were mainly of Phoenician origin, the connection of their worship with their sin would be but the continuation of their original "cultus." 13-15. The preparations for a feast do not necessarily imply peculiar religious professions. The offerer retained part of the victim for a feast (Le 3:9, &c.). This feast she professes was prepared for him whom she boldly addresses as one sought specially to partake of it. Diligently to seek thy face; as not being able to take any pleasure in my feast without thy company.

I have found thee, by a happy providence of God complying with my desires. Therefore came I forth to meet thee,.... Having so much good cheer at home, and none to eat of it with her; and having so fond and affectionate a regard to this young man, as she pretended; he being the only person in her thoughts, whom she hoped to meet with, and whose company she desired, and his only; though, had she met any other, she would have said the same things to them. Aben Ezra, upon Proverbs 7:14, says, she told him lies; probably that might be true; but this was no doubt a lie; and it is no unusual thing for the whore of Rome to speak lies in hypocrisy, 1 Timothy 4:2;

diligently to seek thy face; which of all faces she desired to see, being most lovely to her; with the comeliness of which she was exceedingly taken and ravished, and got up betimes in the morning, as the word (n) signifies, even before day, to seek for him;

and I have found thee; which she speaks with a rapture and ecstasy of joy; blessing herself on this happy occasion, that she should come out so opportunely, and find him so quickly; intimating, that it was a kind providence, and that the thing was of God: so conversions to the antichristian church, which are the artifice of hell, are ascribed to the divine Being.

(n) "ad quaerendum mane", Montanus.

Therefore came I forth to meet thee, diligently to seek thy face, and I have found thee.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Verse 15. - Therefore came I forth to meet thee. As though she would invite the youth to a pious rite, she speaks; she uses religion as a pretext for her proceedings, trying to blind his conscience and to gratify his vanity. Diligently to seek thy face, and I have found thee (see on Proverbs 1:28). She tries to persuade her dupe that he is the very lover for whom she was looking, whereas she was ready to take the first that offered. Spiritual writers see in this adulteress a type of the mystery of iniquity, or false doctrine, or the harlot described in Revelation (Revelation 2:20, etc.; Revelation 17:1, etc.; Revelation 18:9, etc.). The designations of time give the impression of progress to a climax; for Hitzig unwarrantably denies that נשׁף means the twilight; the Talmud, Berachoth 3b, correctly distinguishes תרי נשׁפי two twilights, the evening and the morning twilight. But the idea is not limited to this narrow sense, and does not need this, since the root-word נשׁף (vid., at Isaiah 40:24) permits the extension of the idea to the whole of the cool half (evening and night) of the entire day; cf. the parallel of the adulterer who veils himself by the darkness of the night and by a mask on his countenance, Job 24:15 with Jeremiah 13:16. However, the first group of synonyms, בּנשׁף בּערב יום (with the Cod. Frankf. 1294, to be thus punctuated), as against the second, appears to denote an earlier period of the second half of the day; for if one reads, with Hitzig, בּערב יום (after Judges 19:9), the meaning remains the same as with בּערב יום, viz., advesperascente die (Jerome), for ערב equals Arab. gharab, means to go away, and particularly to go under, of the sun, and thus to become evening. He saw the youth in the twilight, as the day had declined (κέκλικεν, Luke 24:29), going backwards and forwards; and when the darkness of night had reached its middle, or its highest point, he was still in his lurking-place. אישׁון לילה, apple of the eye of the night, is, like the Pers. dili scheb, heart of the night, the poetic designation of the middle of the night. Gusset incorrectly: crepusculum in quo sicut in oculi pupilla est nigredo sublustris et quasi mistura lucis ac tenebrarum. אישׁון is, as elsewhere לב, particularly the middle; the application to the night was specially suitable, since the apple of the eye is the black part in the white of the eye (Hitzig). It is to be translated according to the accus., in pupilla noctis et caligine (not caliginis); and this was probably the meaning of the poet, for a ב is obviously to be supplied to ואפלה.
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