Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary
Here are many like words to the former, by way of proverbs in this Chapter to the same purport as before, in holding forth the mysteries of the kingdom.
Proverbs 29:1-4 He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy. When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn. Whoso loveth wisdom rejoiceth his father: but he that keepeth company with harlots spendeth his substance. The king by judgment establisheth the land: but he that receiveth gifts overthroweth it.
By the king here spoken of, must be meant the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the king uniformly intended through all the scriptures, whose government is in righteousness, and who will minister true judgment unto the people. He is Jehovah's king, and so revealed. Psalms 2:6; Psa 20; Psa 21.
A man that flattereth his neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet. In the transgression of an evil man there is a snare: but the righteous doth sing and rejoice. The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it. Scornful men bring a city into a snare: but wise men turn away wrath. If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest. The bloodthirsty hate the upright: but the just seek his soul. A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards. If a ruler hearken to lies, all his servants are wicked. The poor and the deceitful man meet together: the LORD lighteneth both their eyes.
This last verse contains an abundance of gospel truths. When the Holy Ghost shines in upon the soul of the sinner, grace breaks through all the darkness of the mind. The poor in spirit, and the deceitful heart of the proud sinner; both are made equal debtors to the rich, free, and sovereign grace of God. Herein, in an eminent point of view, is that scripture fulfilled, which saith, God is no respecter of persons. For in the redemption by Christ, it is not that one sinner merits more than another sinner, in being made the distinguished object of such an unspeakable mercy: but that God's rich grace may be magnified. It is not a respect to our person, but a respect to the everlasting covenant of God in Christ. Romans 9:16-21.
The king that faithfully judgeth the poor, his throne shall be established forever. The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame. When the wicked are multiplied, transgression increaseth: but the righteous shall see their fall. Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul. Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.
I pause over this last verse, to remark, that by the people perishing where there is no vision, cannot be meant that the people of God perish everlastingly: for Jesus hath said, that they, shall not perish; neither shall any pluck them out of his hand. John 10:28. But even the people of God may perish temporally: and if they follow blind leaders, and are found sitting under a carnal ministry; here the lack of knowledge must, and will induce great leanness of soul: therefore they may be truly said to perish for the want of soul-enriching supports, arising from the open vision of the word, and secret manifestation, through the ministry of the word and ordinances of Jesus and his graces. Reader! think here from how inexpressibly valuable must it be to have a soul-strengthening fulness of ordinances; and a faithful ministry of the word to sit under, where Jesus hath promised his presence. Matthew 18:20.
A servant will not be corrected by words: for though he understand he will not answer. Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him. He that delicately bringeth up his servant from a child shall have him become his son at the length. An angry man stirreth up strife, and a furious man aboundeth in transgression. A man's pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit. Whoso is partner with a thief hateth his own soul: he heareth cursing, and bewrayeth it not. The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe. Many seek the ruler's favour; but every man's judgment cometh from the LORD. An unjust man is an abomination to the just: and he that is upright in the way is abomination to the wicked.
It is blessed to mark, both in the entrance, the progress, and the issue of things, the mighty difference between him that serveth. the Lord, and him that serveth him not. The Prophet did not, without sufficient cause, deliver that most decided sentence: Say ye to the righteous, that it shall be well with him: for they shall eat the fruit of their doings. Woe unto the wicked, it shall be ill with him; for the reward of his hands shall be given him. Isaiah 3:10-11.
READER! there is an abundance of matter for raising many profitable reflections in the perusal of this chapter; but I beg particularly to call your attention to that solemn verse contained in it, which in itself forms a volume. Where there is no vision, the people perish. The most faithful ministers of Jesus have to lament the little success of their labors in the present day: and when they look round and take a leisurely survey, of the languishing state of Zion, much cause have they to weep, between the porch and the altar, and to besiege the mercy-seat, night and day, with the cry: Spare thy people, 0 Lord, and give not thine heritage to reproach. But what an awful view doth it afford in the consciousness that in many paces of this our guilty land, There is no vision! Oh! for the Lord to send forth faithful men, anxious to win souls to Christ! And oh! for the Lord Jesus to come himself in every place whithersoever he sends his word by faithful Pastors, after his own heart, that shall feed his people in true understanding and knowledge. Reader! where, and under what open vision, do you sit? That gospel, which holds forth Jesus in the glories of his person, and in the completeness of his salvation - which humbles the sinner, and exalts the Saviour - which, by laying the creature low, makes Jesus precious; and tends to promote holiness in the life and conversation, in shewing all our springs to be in him: these are precious truths to keep the soul alive, and to prevent leanness and perishing. Reader! may it be your portion, and mine, to be thus strong in the grace which is in Christ Jesus.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Proverbs 29 Overview". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://beta.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/pmc/proverbs-29.html. 1828.
the First Week of Advent