He that digs a pit shall fall into it; and whoever breaks an hedge, a serpent shall bite him.
I. THE HEDGES WHICH GOD HAS PLACED AROUND US.
1. God's commandments.
2. Parental restraints. Hedges with respect to associates, books, habits, and places of amusements.
3. Imparted principles. Teachers are anxious to fix truths, sentences from Scripture, holy maxims, in the minds of the young, that they may be in them as moral hedges in the time of temptation.
II. THE YOUNG WILL BE TEMPTED TO BREAK THESE HEDGES.
1. By their own evil hearts.
2. By evil companions.
3. By the evil one.
III. THERE IS A SERPENT BEHIND THE HEDGE. If we do wrong we shall certainly suffer. The path of sin is full of serpents. The way of transgressors is hard. Punishment not always visible, but surely follows the deed. In the sense of shame, in the stings of conscience, in the displeasure of God, the serpent's bite is felt.
(W. Osborne Lilley.)
Parallel VersesKJV: He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him.