Bible Commentaries

Proverbs 12

Verses 1-28

Verse Proverbs 12:9. That is to say, it matters little that one is not counted as of any importance by his neighbors if, nevertheless, he is able to keep a servant, that is, to employ someone to minister to his need. That man is in a far worse case who honors himself, that is, keeps up an appearance out of pride, while, nevertheless, he lacks bread.

Verse Proverbs 12:12. The contrast here is between the feverish desire for the speculative method of obtaining, symbolized by hunting, with the natural and certain, if slower, process of growing.

Verse Proverbs 12:14. This proverb takes for granted that a man's words and works are good, and then teaches that they benefit him as well as those to whom he speaks and for whom he works.

Verse Proverbs 12:20. In order to appreciate the antithesis of the proverb it must be recognized that the writer takes it for granted that deceit in the heart is the cause of misery. Men who imagine evil have to practice deceit, which causes unhappiness. Men who counsel peace have joy in the heart.