Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

that wandereth from his place, who forsakes the station in which Providence hath placed him. When heads of families are needlessly absent from home, their domestic affairs take a dad turn, and the love of pleasure and of gadding abroad often exposes young peo-9 file to temfuation and ruin. Ointment and perfume rejoice the heart: so [doth] the sweetness of a man's friend by hearty

10 counsel. Thine own friend, and thy father's friend, whom thou and he have found sincere, forsake not; neither go into thy brother's house in the day of thy calamity: [for] better [is] a neighbour-[thatis] near, than a brother far oft'; we often meet with more kindness in trouble from friends than from near relations; therefore be friendly, get and keep good friends, and show

11 some regard to the ancient friendships of the family. My son, be wise, and make my heart glad, that I may answer him that reproacheth me,and charge»thy miscarriages ufionmy want of care in

12 thy education. A prudent [man] foreseeth the evil of sin and future misery, [and] hideth himself/rom it; [but] the simple pass on, [and] are punished. This is applicable to this world and another.

13 Take his garment that is surety for a stranger, and take a pledge , of him for a strange woman ; if a man be bound for others, he

knows not who, especially persont of bad character, do not trust

14 him without good security, for he is in the way to ruin. He that blosseth his friend with a loud voice ; rising early in the morning; it shall be counted a curse to him; there is an excess and officiousness of complaisance, which instead of serving and pleas

1 s ing hurts and disobliges. A continual dropping in a very rainy day and a contentious woman are alike ; a man cannot go abroad

16 with comfort, or stay at home with tliuet. Whosoever hideth her hideth the wind ; he who would keep her tongue under government or conceal her shame, may as well undertake to keep the wind from blowing; and the ointment of his right hand, [which] bewrayeth [itslef;] a man may group a perfume in his hand, and think thereby to conceal it, but growing warm it will smell the more.

17 Iron sharpetieth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend ; friendship if rightly managed is of the greatest use; wise friends whet one ano'hers minds, and increase each othersi

18 piety and usefulness. Whoso keepeth the figtree shall eat the fruit thereof: so he that waiteth on his master shall be honoured ; he who is diligent in his business, and warchcth over his master's reputation and substance, shall be respected and rewarded.

19 As in water, face [answereth] to face, so the heart of man to man: there is a great re&emllance runs through human nature; by knowing one's own heart, we may make a good guess at others;

20 therefore let us take pains to know our own. Hell and destruction, or the grave, are never full ; so the eyes of man, that is, the de-rires of a worldly man after worldly things, are never satisfi

21 ed. [As] the fining pot for silver, and the furnace for gold, for its trial and examination; so [is] a man to his praise ; a man of vanity and little worth is elevated and intoxicated with it, but a mun of a truly worthy and valuable character will not be so; he

will direct all to God, make allowances for the partiality of hit

22 friends, and use it with caution. Though thou shouldst bray a fool in a mortar among wheat with a pestle, [yet] will not his foolishness depart from him; though you should use the most violent methods for his reformation, and to refiroaf and chiding add rebukes, and blows, yet they will have no good effect upon such an

23 obstinate creature. Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, [and] look'well to thy herds. An admirable rule, not only for husbandmen, but for all masters and mistresses: they should

24 look to their affairs themselves, and not trust to servants. For riches [are] not for ever: and doth the crown [endure] to every generation? The greatest plenty and the largest estate may be lost for want.of firudence and good economy; even a

35 princely fortune may be sunk without care. The hay appeareth, and the tender grass sboweth itself, and herbs of the mountains are gathered; these grow, and there is a time for gathering them, after which they will be spoiled; therefore make hay while the sun shines, and gather herbs in their season, then they will turn to a

26 good account. The lambs [are] for thy clothing, and the goats [are] the" price of the field, to fiay the rent, yea, by good manage

3r ment, to purchase the estate. And [thou shalt have] goat's milk enough for thy food, for the food of thy household, and [for] the maintenance for thy maidens. The meaning of these verses is, that as in husbandry men must look to their affairs, attend to the firofier season of doing business, sowing, reaping, shearing, isfc. so must all others be diligent to know the state of their affairs, prudent in the management of them, and punctual in the dispatch of business and payment of debts; then, with the blessing of God, they will prosper. These cautions are very necessary, since we see so many reduced to distress for want of attending to them, from whose calamities we should learn wisdom.

CHAP. XXVIII.

1 r I "'HE wicked flee when no man pur sue th; an evil con

JL science makes men cowards: but the righteous are bold as a lion ; they proceed with resolution in the most hazardous undertakings; what reason then is there to pray that our soldiers and

2 sailors may be righteous! For the transgression of a land many [are] the princes thereof; many changes are in the government, at least in those that administer it: but by a man of understanding [and] knowledge the state [thereof] shall be prolonged; one wise and upright minister may reduce every thing to

3 order and secure its prosperity. A poor man that oppresseth the poor [is like] a sweeping rain which leaveth no food; like a violent torrent destroying the fruits of the earth,instead of refresh

4 ing them. They that forsake the law, praise the wicked ; sinners keep one anothar in countenance ; but such as keep the law

Vol. V. I

contend with them: it is a sign of real piety to oppose the wick

5 ed. Evil men understand not judgment; their minds are depraved, and they cannot judge between right and wrong: but they that seek the Loud understand all [things ;] they that seek di

6 rectionfrom hia wird and а/ùrit will not err. Better [is] the poor that walketh in his uprightness, than [he that is] perverse [in his] ways, though he [be] rich; who gains his riches by dishonest practices, or by shuffling ways, which is the proper sense of the

7 word. Whoso keepeth the law, who observes the rules of sobriety, temfieran.ee and other -virtues, fis] a wise son, and his parents have honour and comfort in him: but he that is a companion of riotous [men] shameth his father, who ought to have restrained

8 him and taught him better. He that by usury and unjust gain increaseth his substance, he shall gather it for him that will pity

9 the poor, who will exercise the c/iarity he has neglected. He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer [shall be] abomination, instead of making up. the deficiency of his

10 actions. Whoso causeth the righteous to go astray in an evil way, who attempts to seduce upright men into dangerous practices^ he shall full himself into his own pit: but the upright shall have good [tilings] in possession ; the peculiar reward of that -virtue,

} I which triitmpns over the snares of a seducing world. The rich man [is] wise in his own proud conceit; but the poor that hath understanding searcheth him out : in his discourse he finds him to

12 be but a fool. When righteous [men] do rejoice, [there is] great glory: but when the wicked rise, a man is hidden; men

1 3 are glad to conceal themselves for fear of ill usage. He that covereth his sins, who e.rcusfs or lessens them, shall not prosper: but whoso confes.seth and forsaketli [them] shall have mercy ; con

14 fession and reformation mus: go together. Happy [is] the man that feareth alway; who has an habitual awe and reverence of the divine Being and his own conacirnct:: but he that hardcneth his

15 heart shall fall Into mischief. [As] a roaring lion, and a ranging bear; [so is] a wicked ruler over the poor people, who are

16 not able to resist Aie power. The prince that wanteth understanding [is] also a great oppressor: [but] he that hateth covetousness shall prolong [his] days; a ma лim applicable to pri~

17 vate as well as public life. A man that doeth violence to the blood of [any] person shall flee to the pit; let no man stay him ; he shall be so universally abhorred that his neighbours shall not endeavour to save him. It is wrong to intercede for such persons, and it is the glory of a king not to pardon them, though of the

18 highest rank. Whoso walketh uprightly shall be saved: but [he that is] perverse [in his] ways shall fall at once; tie who thinks to save himaclf by artifice and deceit, shall sometime or

19 other jail, so that nothing can preserve him. He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread ; prudent, frugal persons shall thrive: but he that lulloweth after vain [persons], frequents idle and loose company to the neglect of his business, shall have

20 poverty enough. A faithful man, both in -word and deed) shall

[ocr errors]

abound with blessings from God and man: but he that maketh, haste to be rich shall not be innocent; he brings misery upon himself; it is impossible to be -very eager after riches, without vie

21 lating integrity and a good conscience. To have respect of persons [is] not good; for, for a piece of bread [that]" man will transgress ; he will get such a habit of injustice as to sell his integrity

22 for a dinner. He that hasteth to be rich [hath] an evil eye, he envies every one that gets more than himself, and grudges every penny he parts with, especially in charity,. and considereth not that poverty shall come upon him: this is a paradox; one would think that the covetous man would consider most of all the best way to thrive, yet in fact he does not, because he doth not secure the blessing of heaven by generous and charitable actions.

23 He that rebuketh a man, though he may displease him at first, afterward shall find more favour than he that flattereth with tha tongue; we ought to consider how men will look upon us at last.

84 Whoso robbeth his father or his mother, and saith, [It is] no transgression ; the same [is] the companion of a destroyer; he is as bad as any other robber. Children should be content withwhat their parents allow them; and parents who have it in their power should allow their children some spending money, that they may be under no temptation to steal." Let us all remember that it is not our persuading ourselves an action is lawful that will make it

25 so: it is our duty to examine and consider. He that is ef a proud heart stirreth up strife: but he that putteth his trust in the Lokti shall be made fat, that is, shall live comfortably; while nothing makes a man's life more miserable than strife, and living in conten

26 tion with his neighbours and relations.. He that trusteth in his own heart, who relies entirely on his own judgment, is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, who takes and follows good advice, he

27 shall be,delivered. He that giveth unto the poor, shall not lack; he procures the blessing of God upon his substance; but he that hideth his eyes, who does not desire to know those in distress lest he should be obliged to relieve them, shall have many a curse;

28 men will censure him, and God will punish him. When the wicked rise to power and dignity, men hide themselves, that they may not suffer injury by them: but when they perish, the righteous increase ; they openly show themselves, and their numbert increase by their mutual example and encouragement. We here see how much need good men have to strengthen and countenance one another, and how earnestly we should pray that all who are in, authority may be just, ruling in the fear of the Lord.

CHAP. XXIX.

1 T TE that being often reproved by good men, fierhafis earJL JL reeted by God himsctf, but obstinately goes on in bis former wicked courses, and hardeneth [his] neck, shall suddenly be de

3 stroyed, and that without remedy. When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn ; groan under their oppression, not daring per

3 hafis to speak aloud. Whoso loveth wisdom rejoiceth his father, ivho is sincerely desirous of his welfare: but he that keepeth company with harlots spendeth [his] substance, and grieveth his

4 friends. The king by judgment establishet h the land : but he that receiveth gifts to fiervert judgment, overthroweth it, though

5 it ivas well established before. A man that flattereth his neigh

6 bour spreadeth a net for his feet ; leads him into mischief. In the transgression of an evil man [there is] a snare ; he finds himself undone by the means whereby he thought to ruin others: but the righteous doth sing and rejoice under the protection cf God.

7 The righteous considereth the cause of the poor, that he may da him justice: [but] the wicked regardeth not to know [it ;] he expects no advantage from it, and therefore will not give him

8 se{f the trouble to inquire into it. Scornful men bring a city into a snare; but wise [men] turn away wrath ; they divert the fury

9 of men, which the scorner enrageth. [If] a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, [there is] no rest; whether he dispute a matter with him, or seek to reclaim him, whether he taketh it well or ill, be pleased or displeased, it hath no good effect; the best way is to keep at a distance from such

10 persons. The blood thirsty hate the upright: but the just seek

11 his soul, do him all the good offices he can. A fool uttereth all his mind; tells every thing he knows, without considering time or persons: but a wise [man] keepeth it in till afterward; chooses the most convenient time and circumstances, and thinks before he speaks: a maxim which young people in particular should attend to.

12 If a ruler hearken to lies, all his servants [are] wicked; thty

13 xoill arm themselves with his authority to injure others. The poor and the deceitful man meet together: the Loud lighteneth both their eyes. The poor, as opposed to deceitful, may signify persons of great simplicity ; and the deceitful may mean great politicians and cunning men: now whatever knowledge and sagacity they have God gives it them; he can enlighten the poor to guard

14 against the snares of the artful, and humble the deceitful. The king that faithfully judgeth the poor, his throne shall be established for ever by the affections of his people, and the blessing of a

15 righteous God. The rod and reproof give wisdom; they should be used together; correction without reproof is very absurd: but a child left [to himself] bringeth his mother to shame, who by her imprudent fondness has probably done most to sfioil him.

\ 6 When the wicked are multiplied, transgression increaseth : but

« ZurückWeiter »