The Book of Proverbs chapter twelve with BAC (Brit-Am Commentary).
Proverbs 12:1-7 Love Instruction.
[Proverbs 12:1] Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge,
But he who hates correction is stupid.
instruction: in Hebrew "musar" also renderable as "reproof".
stupid" in Hebrew "baer" which may be understandable as "willfully ignorant".
[Proverbs 12:2] A good man obtains favor from the Lord,
But a man of wicked intentions He will condemn.
God will help those who are good.
will condemn. Hebrew "yaRshia" i.e. shall be found guilty.
[Proverbs 12:3] A man is not established by wickedness,
But the root of the righteous cannot be moved.
[Proverbs 12:4] An excellent wife is the crown of her husband,
But she who causes shame is like rottenness in his bones.
Women should honor their husbands. They should also conduct themselves in such a way as brings respect to their families.
At the least they should not do the opposite.
[Proverbs 12:5] The thoughts of the righteous are right,
But the counsels of the wicked are deceitful.
A good person want to do the right thing. Bad people take delight in badness.
A basically good person will not seek the downfall of others who trust in him.
Even when a wicked person says he is seeking your good and genuinely believes he is, he probably is not.
[Proverbs 12:6] The words of the wicked are, 'Lie in wait for blood,'
But the mouth of the upright will deliver them.
The words of the wicked are, 'Lie in wait for blood,': In Hebrew this would be understood as saying,
When evil people speak they intend to trap the livelihood and existence of others.
When an upright person speaks he intends well and this comes through so that even when he is in trouble he will be helped to overcome it.
[Proverbs 12:7] The wicked are overthrown and are no more,
But the house of the righteous will stand.
The wicked are overthrown and are no more: In Hebrew this would be understood as saying, when the wicked are overturned (suffer reversals), they become undone BUT the righteous (though they may suffer numerous problems) will eventually be firmly established.
[Proverbs 12:8] A man will be commended according to his wisdom,
But he who is of a perverse heart will be despised.
We all have a little bit of perversity inside us. There is something there that pushes us at times to act against our own interests, or again common sense, or contrary to accepted decency.
We need to recognize this trait and overcome it.
We also have to listen to the good side of ourselves. This is wisdom. It can help us.
[Proverbs 12:9] Better is the one who is slighted but has a servant,
Than he who honors himself but lacks bread.
one who is slighted. Hebrew "ish [man] nikleh [regarded as not important] ".
In Hebrew there is an expression "work gives honor to the worker".
There is much truth in this.
It is not however absolute. At some level we must trust in the Almighty.
[Proverbs 12:10] A righteous man regards the life of his animal,
But the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.
First of all, the second half of this verse is very telling. Many of us may have experienced this. Even when a wicked person has a kind impulse he is liable to do more harm than good.
Now for the fist part, The translation given above is correct. The Hebrew however may be understood as imparting additional meaning.
# A righteous man understands the psyche of his beast #.
# A righteous man understands the importance of his own animal needs #.
We need to look after ourselves. A righteous person will take care of themselves as well as of others.
[Proverbs 12:11] He who tills his land will be satisfied with bread,
But he who follows frivolity is devoid of understanding.
I would slightly rephrase that translation thusly,
# He who tills his own land will satisfy [himself and others] with bread,
But he who pursues empty causes is lacking of heart. #
Do something for yourself. Work for others if that is what is required but also look out for yourself whether by putting money aside, learning the profession, learning something else, be aware of wasting your time or of doing things that lack utility.
Proverbs 12: 12- 28 Truth and Righteousness Give Life.
[Proverbs 12:12] The wicked covet the catch of evil men,
But the root of the righteous yields fruit.
Wicked peoples are envious of each other. They deem that which is gained by evil means to be desirable.
Incidentally where did this word "deem" come from?
The Dictionaries say:
deem O.E. deman "to judge, condemn, think, compute," from root of dom (see doom). Originally "to pronounce judgment" as well as "to form an opinion." The two judges of the Isle of Man were called deemsters in 17c., a title formerly common throughout England and Scotland and preserved in the surname Dempster.
(v.) To account; to esteem; to think; to judge; to hold in opinion; to regard.
(n.) Opinion; judgment.
(v.) To decide; to judge; to sentence; to condemn.
(v. i.) To be of opinion; to think; to estimate; to opine; to suppose.
(v. i.) To pass judgment.
That is what the dictionaries say.
I have a feeling for the meaning of words and I now make bold enough to say that the above definitions are not exact!
"deem" in spoken English implies to "consider something similar or like unto".
If you do not agree, prove me wrong! That is how the word deem is used.
In Hebrew we have a word root DMH giving us words such domeh, dmh, dmion. In verbal conjugation to could also be rendered as dimah and as deem.
What does it mean?
You guessed it.
In Hebrew it means, "consider something similar or like unto".
How is that time after time again we find the Hebrew Language explains the meanings of words in the English Language much better than the English Language Etymological and General Meaning Dictionaries can?
You tell me.
[Proverbs 12:13] The wicked is ensnared by the transgression of his lips,
But the righteous will come through trouble.
In our commentary to the verse above we made some very bold statement concerning the English Language. The implications are that there must exist a Hebrew substratum in English. This is the soul of the language. This is a far-reaching declaration. If we are wrong it should be easy to prove. We even gave an example that if mistaken should not be hard to confound.
But if we are right then we will come through any test that may be set to us.
[Proverbs 12:14] A man will be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth,
And the recompense of a man's hands will be rendered to him.
Speak well and with consideration of others and you will be requited.
[Proverbs 12:15] The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
But he who heeds counsel is wise.
Listen to the advice of others. Take it into consideration. Factor good advice into your decisions.
[Proverbs 12:16] A fool's wrath is known at once,
But a prudent man covers shame.
Hold yourself back when you get angry or think something is wrong. Very often things are not what they may seem. Do not commit yourself to angry reactions that later leave you no room to manoeuvre or to back away if you are mistaken.
[Proverbs 12:17] He who speaks truth declares righteousness,
But a false witness, deceit.
The Truth is right. The way to achieve righteousness is through the truth.
[Proverbs 12:18] There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword,
But the tongue of the wise promotes health.
Sometimes we need to upbraid our children or employees or others, etc. Do this in a way that does not hurt but rather builds and helps.
[Proverbs 12:19] The truthful lip shall be established forever,
But a lying tongue is but for a moment.
[Proverbs 12:20] Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil,
But counselors of peace have joy.
21 No grave trouble will overtake the righteous,
But the wicked shall be filled with evil.
22 Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord,
But those who deal truthfully are His delight.
Tell the truth. Make this a primary principle. There may be circumstances where one can change the description of reality but this should be used rarely.
The second part of this verse is the key, i.e. deal truthfully. Sometimes truthful results may be the main point.
23 A prudent man conceals knowledge,
But the heart of fools proclaims foolishness.
You do not have to reveal everything, neither about yourself nor concerning others.
24 The hand of the diligent will rule,
But the lazy man will be put to forced labor.
25 Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression,
But a good word makes it glad.
If you can say a good word, make a joke, gladden others, do so.
26 The righteous should choose his friends carefully,
For the way of the wicked leads them astray.
27 The lazy man does not roast what he took in hunting,
But diligence is man's precious possession.
Diligence i.e. using properly what is available in the time one has may give results that are better than an outright gift.
28 In the way of righteousness is life,
And in its pathway there is no death.