Proverbs 30:19
Parallel Verses
New International Version
the way of an eagle in the sky, the way of a snake on a rock, the way of a ship on the high seas, and the way of a man with a young woman.

King James Bible
The way of an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent upon a rock; the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of a man with a maid.

Darby Bible Translation
The way of an eagle in the heavens, the way of a serpent upon a rock, the way of a ship in the midst of the sea, and the way of a man with a maid.

World English Bible
The way of an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent on a rock; the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of a man with a maiden.

Young's Literal Translation
The way of the eagle in the heavens, The way of a serpent on a rock, The way of a ship in the heart of the sea, And the way of a man in youth.

Proverbs 30:19 Parallel
Commentary
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

The way of an eagle - I borrow, with thanks, the very sensible note of the Rev. Mr. Holden on this passage.

"The particle כן ken plainly shows that Proverbs 30:19 and Proverbs 30:20 are to be taken in connection; consequently, it is a comparison between the way of an adulterous woman, and the way of the things here described.

"The adulterous woman goes about in search of her deluded victim, like as the eagle takes its flight into the air to spy out its prey. She uses every species of blandishment and insinuation to allure and beguile, as the serpent employs its windings and sinuous motions to pass along the rocks; she pursues a course surrounded with danger, as a ship in the midst of the sea is continually exposed to the fury of the tempest, and the hazard of shipwreck; and she tries every means, and exercises all her sagacity, to prevent the discovery of her illicit enjoyments, as a man attempts to conceal his clandestine intercourse with a maid. Such is the conduct of a lewd woman, marked by specious dissimulation and traitorous blandishment; she eateth and wipeth her mouth-she indulges her adulterous lust, yet artfully endeavors to conceal it, and with unblushing countenance asserts her innocence, exclaiming, I have done no wickedness."

Chaucer's January and May is an excellent comment on such wiles and protestations.

The way of a man with a maid - בעלמה bealmah with or in a maid; but one of De Rossi's MSS. has בעלמיו bealmaiv, in his youth; and with this the Septuagint, ev neothti, the Vulgate, in adolescentia, the Syriac and the Arabic agree; and so also my own MS. Bible: - The weie of a man in his waxing youthe. Dr. Kennicott, in a sermon preached at Onsford, 1765, p. 46, has defended the reading of the versions, corroborating it by two MSS., one in the Harleian, and the other in the Bodleian library, besides that mentioned by De Rossi. See De Rossi's Var. Lect. Certainly the way of a man in his youth contains too many intricacies for human wisdom to explore. He only who searches the heart knows fully its various corrupt principles, and their productions. The common reading may refer to the formation of a child in the womb. But some have understood it of the immaculate conception. See my note on Matthew 1:23 (note), where the subject is largely considered.

If we take the four things which Agur says were too wonderful for him, in their obvious sense, there is little difficulty in them.

1. The passage which a bird makes through the air;

2. That which is made by a serpent on a rock; and,

3. That made by a ship through the sea, are such as cannot be ascertained: for who can possibly show the track in which either of them has passed?

And as to the fourth, if it refer to the suspected incontinence of one reputed a virgin, the signs are so equivocal, as to be absolutely unascertainable. The existence of the hymen has been denied by the ablest anatomists; and the signs of continence or incontinence, except in the most recent cases, are such as neither man nor woman can swear to, even to the present day; and they were certainly not less difficult to Agur and his contemporaries. I shall carry this matter no farther.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

way of an

Job 39:27 Does the eagle mount up at your command, and make her nest on high?

Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary...

midst

Exodus 22:16 And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife.

Library
A Homily for Humble Folks
A Sermon (No. 2140) delivered on Lord's Day, April 27th, 1890 by C.H. Spurgeon at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington. "Surely I am more brutish than any man, and have not the understanding of a man."--Proverbs 30:2. Sometimes it is necessary for a speaker to refer to himself, and he may feel it needful to do so in a way peculiar to the occasion. When Elihu addressed himself to Job and the three wise men, he commended himself to them saying, "I am full of matter, the spirit within me constraineth
C.H. Spurgeon—Sermons on Proverbs

The Tenth Commandment
Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his man-servant, nor his maid-servant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.' Exod 20: 17. THIS commandment forbids covetousness in general, Thou shalt not covet;' and in particular, Thy neighbour's house, thy neighbour's wife, &c. I. It forbids covetousness in general. Thou shalt not covet.' It is lawful to use the world, yea, and to desire so much of it as may keep us from the temptation
Thomas Watson—The Ten Commandments

A Book for Boys and Girls Or, Temporal Things Spritualized.
by John Bunyan, Licensed and entered according to order. London: Printed for, and sold by, R. Tookey, at his Printing House in St. Christopher's Court, in Threadneedle Street, behind the Royal Exchange, 1701. Advertisement by the Editor. Some degree of mystery hangs over these Divine Emblems for children, and many years' diligent researches have not enabled me completely to solve it. That they were written by Bunyan, there cannot be the slightest doubt. 'Manner and matter, too, are all his own.'[1]
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

Thoughts Upon Worldly Riches. Sect. I.
HE that seriously considers the Constitution of the Christian Religion, observing the Excellency of its Doctrines, the Clearness of its Precepts, the Severity of its Threatnings, together with the Faithfulness of its Promises, and the Certainty of its Principles to trust to; such a one may justly be astonished, and admire what should be the reason that they who profess this not only the most excellent, but only true Religion in the World, should notwithstanding be generally as wicked, debauched and
William Beveridge—Private Thoughts Upon a Christian Life

Cross References
Deuteronomy 28:49
The LORD will bring a nation against you from far away, from the ends of the earth, like an eagle swooping down, a nation whose language you will not understand,

Proverbs 30:18
"There are three things that are too amazing for me, four that I do not understand:

Jeremiah 48:40
This is what the LORD says: "Look! An eagle is swooping down, spreading its wings over Moab.

Jeremiah 49:22
Look! An eagle will soar and swoop down, spreading its wings over Bozrah. In that day the hearts of Edom's warriors will be like the heart of a woman in labor.

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