Thursday, July 5, 2012

Proverbs 12 Speech and Deeds Part 1.

4. Two Subunits on Speech and Deeds (12:1-28)
     (a) The First Subunit (1-14)  Introduction (1-3), Speech and One's Household (4-7), Deeds and Property (8-12), Janus Conclusion: Words and Deeds (13-14)
     (b) The Second Unit (12.15-28) Introduction (15), Wise and Foolish Speech (16-23), Diligent Work and Good speech (24-27), Conclusion (28) 

"Chapter twelve consists of two subunits of proverbs of equal length dealing with speech and deeds (vv. 1-14, 15-28).  Each half begins with an educational aphorism contrasting the teachableness of the wise with the incorrigibility of the fool  (vv. 1-15) to encourage the son to accept the teachings that follow.  Each half concludes with a synthetic proverb--a rare phenomenon in Collection IIA...
Each subunit is divided into partial subunits that commence with an aphorism broadly characterizing the righteous and wicked and is drawn to a conclusion with aphorisms that affirm the permanence of the former and the impermanence of the latter: vv.1-3, 4-7, 8-12 (vv. 13-14 are a concluding janus), and vv. 16-19, 20-23, and 24-28."
       ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
Introduction (vv. 1-3)
1a                                                But     
Whoever                                  he who
loves instruction                 hates correction
loves knowledge,                 is stupid. 
1 An educational statement:
1loves...  "...the parents strike at the passions that motivate behavior (see 1.22).  Their rhetoric and moral persuasion alter the child's religious affection to become a lover of instruction and knowledge."
       ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
1stupid...  "Ignoramus (["senseless, NIV] bā'ar) "refers to a stupid man who does not have the rationality that differentiates men from animals (Ps. 73.22). (Chou-Wee Pan, NIDOTTE, 1:691, s.v. b'r.)
       ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
2                                          (1)  But
A good man                   (2)  a man of wicked intentions
obtains favor                 (4)  will condemn.
from the LORD,               (3)  He[the LORD]
2  An ethical statement:
2wicked intentions...  "...the opposite of a "a good person," designates the brute who, out of his own heart's alienation form God, devises evil stratagems to advantage himself by disadvantaging the community."
       ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
3                                         (1)   But
A man                               (2)  the root
is not established         (4)  cannot be moved.
by wickedness,              (3)  of the righteous
3  A religious statement:
3b  the root...  "...the incomplete horticultural metaphor root (sores) evokes the imagery of a tree (cf. 11.28, 30) and connotes that the Holy One is the source of a flourishing existence (cf. Judg. 5.14; Job 14.7-9; Isa. 11.1).  If the root remains, it will flourish..."         ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
First Subunit: Speech and One's Household  (vv.4-7)
"The first partial subunit of the body begins with a single-line general characterization, contrasting the two kinds of wives..."        ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
4                                              But
An excellent wife              she who causes shame
is the crown                         is like rottenness
of her husband,                  in his bones. 
imprecise antithesis  -  "Marriage is no light matter; the wife either makes or breaks a man in his home and in the community (see 14.1; 18.22; 19.14; 31:10-31)."       ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
4excellent wife...  "The modern sense of virtuous (AV, RV) does not justice to the Heb. term's root idea of strength and worth (Prov. 31.10 cf. the full-length portrait in the ensuing verses there).  The modern phrase, 'sh has a lot in her', expresses something of the meaning."    ---Kidner in TOTC
4his bones...  "his basic physical and psychical structure."      ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
Verses 5-7 are linked by the catchwords "righteous/upright" and "wicked"...
5                                            But
The thoughts                    the counsels
of the righteous          of the wicked
are right,                            are deceitful. 
5thoughts...  "Thoughts mean primarily 'intentions', 'plans'.  Moffatt puts it well: 'The aims of a good man are honourable: the plans of a bad man are underhand.' "  ---Kidner in TOTC
6                                                          But
The words                                        the mouth
of the wicked                                 of the upright
are, "Lie in wait for blood,"       will deliver them. 
6a Lie in wait for blood...  "The literal sense is best: i.e. '...are a lying-in-wait for blood'; in other words, '...are an ambush'.  The second line ends, lit., '...delivers them' (i.e. the upright themselves), and in this answer to the first line there may be a glance at the thought of 1.18, that your trap tends to trap you.  Alternatively the point may be that sincerity is the best defense against slander."  ---Kidner in TOTC
6b  them...  In second cl.  the Heb. has saves them, in which the them (which has no antecedent in the first cl.) must refer to the upright.  Such a reference, however, is not favored by the parallelism: the wicked, in the first cl., attack others, and the upright in the second cl., should save others; good men, moreover, are, in Pr., saved not by their words, but by their righteousness (10.2; 11.4, 6)."  --Toy in ICC
7                                                                          But
- - -                                                                      the house of
The wicked                                                    the righteous
are overthrown                                            - - -
and are no more,                                          will stand.
7  The wicked's destiny corresponds to their deeds.
7b  house...  I wonder it the proverb means to indicate that the righteous help not only their own self, but also those in there household, or those under their influence/protection.
7will stand...  "The metaphor stands firm implies that it is built on a firm foundation well able to weather the storms that threaten to demolish it (10.25;, 30; 12.3, 12; Matt. 7.24-27)."    ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
Second Subunit: Deeds and Property  (vv. 8-12)
8                                                        (1)  But
A man                                             (2)  he who
will be commended                   (4)  will be despised
according to his wisdom,        (3)  is of a perverse heart . 
8commended...  Sometimes the wise, though condemned while they lived, receive praise after death (Matt. 23.29-32), and on his return the LORD will certainly commend the wise (Matt. 5.11-12; Luke12.42-44; 2 Cor. 18.18)."    ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    
8b  perverse...  "Heb “crooked of heart”; cf. NAB, NLT “a warped mind” (NIV similar). The noun לֵב (lev, “heart”) is an attributive genitive. It functions as a metonymy of association for “mind; thoughts” (BDB 524 s.v. 3) and “will; volition” (BDB 524 s.v. 4). He does not perceive things as they are, so he makes all the wrong choices. His thinking is all wrong."       ---NET Bible translation notes
9  Better                            Than
is the one who                 he who
is slighted                          honors himself
but has a servant,          but lacks bread.  
9  Substance over show.  
"This verse gives a specific application of the generalization of v. 8."      ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
9honors...  "... public praise that conceals poverty (cf. 15.17; 30.8-9)."   ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT   

9lacks bread...  "The antithetical parallel, "lacking bread" (i.e. the lack of the basics to sustain life), suggests that having a slave is judged a necessity for life (cf. 30.8-9),  In early Israel the value of a slave was 30 shekels (cf. Exod. 21.32; cf. also 2 Macc 8.11; Matt. 27.3) and lay within reach of one in modest circumstances.  Footnote: A slave was frequently a defaulting debtor or poor person who had no alternative but to enslave himself.  "    ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    
A righteous man regards the life of his animal, 
But the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.  
10  This verse seems to emphasize the expansive reach of a righteous man's goodness that extends even to his animals and the contrasting utter lack of kindness of the wicked whose best actions are cruel.
> The topic of sensible wealth (v. 8) now shifts from the well-earned prosperity of the righteous ... to caring for, not exploiting, the worker(v. 10)."   ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
10his animal...   "Providing for the needs of the working ox functions in the law as a proverb for taking care of one's workers (Deut. 25.4; 1 Cor. 9.9-10)."   ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
10mercies...  "Attributing "mercy," however, to the wicked, who by nature neither fear God nor help others, is sarcastic."    ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    
11                                                          But
He who                                               he who
tills his land                                      follows frivolity
- - -                                                        is devoid of understanding. 
will be satisfied with bread,       - - -     
11  "The economic proverbs now turn from one's workers to one's own work"    ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT  
11b  frivolity...  "In view are ventures or gambles that do not involve hard work and/or contribute to the common wealth, not merely to idleness."   ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    
The wicked covet the catch of evil men, 
But the root of the righteous yields fruit. 
12  The empty desires for the fleeting rewards of evil versus the nourishing substance of deep roots.
12a the catch...  "This line is difficult to interpret. BDB connects the term מְצוֹד (mÿtsod) to II מָצוֹד which means (1) “snare; hunting-net” and (2) what is caught: “prey” (BDB 844-45 s.v. II מָצוֹד). This would function as a metonymy of cause for what the net catches: the prey. Or it may be saying that the wicked get caught in their own net, that is, reap the consequences of their own sins. On the other hand, HALOT 622 connects מְצוֹד (mÿtsod) to II מְצוּדָה (mÿtsudah, “mountain stronghold”; cf. NAB “the stronghold of evil men will be demolished”). The LXX translated it as: “The desires of the wicked are evil.” The Syriac has: “The wicked desire to do evil.” The Latin expands it: “The desire of the wicked is a defense of the worst [things, or persons].” C. H. Toy suggests emending the text to read “wickedness is the net of bad men” (Proverbs [ICC], 250)."         ---NET Bible translation notes
12a the catch...   " "Fortification," a military metaphor for security, provides a better parallel to "root...endure," an agricultural metaphor for security (see 12.3).  "Net" a hunting metaphor, provides a better parallel to "root...sprouts," since both metaphors pertain to production, the first by robbery and the second by producing continually.  The climatic parallels in VV. 3 and 7 pertain to security, not production, favoring the meaning "fortification."    ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    
Janus Conclusion: Words and Deeds  (vv.13-14)

13                                                                  But
The wicked                                                the righteous
is ensnared                                                - - -
by the transgression of his lips,       - - -
- - -                                                                will come through trouble. 
13 ensnared...  "Similar puns occur with "trap" and "evil person" in 18.7 and 29.6; in all three the schemer is caught by his own schemes (see 1.16).  The sequential and (way) favors the meaning "set for an evil person: because it implies that as a result of striking the evil man the righteous escapes."
13his lips...  "Heb “transgression of the lips.” The noun “lips” is a genitive of specification and it functions as a metonymy of cause for speech: sinful talk or sinning by talking. J. H. Greenstone suggests that this refers to litigation; the wicked attempt to involve the innocent (Proverbs, 131)."       ---NET Bible translation notes
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. 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

2 Chron 6

6.23  by bringing his way on his own head...  The follows a familar theme in the book of Proverbs of deeds (good or bad) coming back around to the person who lives that way.
6.30  whose heart you know...  This can be a comforting thought.
6.34  wherever You send them...   I am afraid that there are two many wars, etc.  that God did not send anybody to.
6.36  there is no one who does not sin...

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Proverbs 11.23-27 Kindness Pays

11.23-27 Kindness Pays Chiasmus
"Verses 23 and 27 form a frame around this subunit.  They are yoked together by the catchword tob "good" (vv. 23a, 27a) and by the generalizations about the topic of desires and their paradoxical fulfillment."     ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT
These five verses seem to form a chiasmus with verse 25 at the center enforcing the them of this section.
23a                                  23b  But
The desire                               the expectation                                       A   desire/expectation
of the righteous                     of the wicked
is only good,                          is wrath. 
cf. 10.28
23a    Heb “the desire of the righteous.” The noun תַּאֲוַת (taavat) functions as an objective genitive: “what the righteous desire.”       ---NET Bible translation notes
23a   Only highlights "an unexpected conclusion"   ---IBHS in Waltke; Proverbs NICOT    p.506
23wrath...    "The wrath the wicked hoped to inflict on others comes on them.  They hoped for prosperity by overthrowing others, but they are rewarded instead with God's wrath.  ...the use of the word and the parallel "good" suggests God's wrath, not human annoyance until anger is in view."  ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT   
24a                                 24b  And
There is one                           there is one
who scatters                           who withholds                                      B   scatters/withholds
- - - - - -     ,                              more than is right,
yet increases more;               But it leads to poverty. 
24one who scatters...   'The verb one who scatters occurs nine times in the Bible with the sense "to throw widely, loosely, and freely about."  ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT      
24is right...   ""what is right" (i.e. the "good" that benefits life, see v.23) should be supplied from the parallel, debunking the notion that the proverb affirms any big spender."
24leads to poverty...    "Heb “comes to lack.” The person who withholds will come to the diminishing of his wealth. The verse uses hyperbole to teach that giving to charity does not make anyone poor, and neither does refusal to give ensure prosperity."      ---NET Bible translation notes
25a                                    25b  And
The generous soul                   he who waters                                         C   generous/waters
will be made rich,                    will also be watered himself.  
25  "two images: "fat" from the realm of animal husbandry and "drench" from the realm of horticulture.  The double image functions to underscore the certainty..."   ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    
25generous soul...  "...person (lit. soul) of blessing, the one who dispenses kindness, beneficence."   ---Toy in ICC
25made rich...   Heb lit. "made fat" ---  "connotes wealth, abundance, full satisfaction, and health (cf. Deut. 31.20).  It is used for the refreshing of the bones in a parallel to the rejoicing of the heart in Prlv. 15.30."     ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    
25he who waters...  "...implies a parched land in need of water, an implicit comparison to the poor and needy."  ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT    

26a                                     26b  But
The people                                
will curse                                   blessing will be
him                                              on the head of him
who withholds grain,             who sells it.                                            B'  withholds/sells
26a  curse...  "Fundamentally, it means to "to bore through"/"pierce" (2 K. 12.9[10]), which was expanded to "to prick" and so "to designate," "to distinguish," and thus designate as "bad," with which meaning it becomes a "curse."       ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT
26a withholds ...   "refers to the trader who holds back from sail life's subsistence, exploiting the need of others to advantage himself."      ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT
"Allusion to the practice of hoarding grain in seasons of scarcity in order to sell it at a high price."   ---Toy in ICC
26a  grain...  " It symbolizes life's necessities, not luxuries, and a synecdoche for all the produce from the fields, orchards, and gardens that supported Israel's life and economy."    ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT

27a                                       27b  But
He who                                  2)  to him
earnestly seeks good         3)  who seeks evil.                                      A'  seeks/seeks
finds favor,                            1)  trouble will come 
"Good and evil are better taken in a wide sense, as embracing moral (as in Am. 5.14) and general conditions (as in 3.27,29; 13.21; Eccl. 2.8), and as describing the man's conduct toward others."    ---Toy in ICC 
"The synonyms for seeking, both of which connote energetic activity to fulfill desires, show that the benevolent serve the needy out of the desires of the heart, not our of duress, self-interest, or hypocrisy.  Moreover, they are pious because they seek God's favor, thought they win human applause.  The proverb admonishes its audience to be like Jesus, who went about doing good...  The truth, "seek, and you will find," takes on a new meaning: what you seek for others, you will find for yourself (cf. Matt. 6.33: 7.7)."       ---Bruce Waltke in NICOT
 In Charles Dicken's classic A Christmas Carole, the following dialogue between Scrooge and Marley  illustrate these Proverbs.
Jacob Marley: In life, my spirit never rose beyond the limits of our money-changing holes! Now I am doomed to wander without rest or peace, incessant torture and remorse!
Ebenezer: But it was only that you were a good man of business, Jacob!
Jacob Marley: BUSINESS? Mankind was my business! Their common welfare was my business! And it is at this time of the rolling year that I suffer most!  

Most families have their children help with choirs to maintain the household.  It is there part to contribute toward the upkeep and mission of the home.  If we are generous and benevolent people in the way that these proverbs indicate we should, then we should also involve our children in that work as well--teaching them the values that prompt our generosity and benevolent actions to those in need as we go along.

These proverbs also raise the question "How much is enough?"  "When does prudent provision become selfish hoarding?"  I don't know of a simple rule that defines our minimum responsibility, but there is a definite heart described in these proverbs that we should aspire to.

How much money is enough to adequately provide for ourselves and how much should be give?  What are the concrete things that we can do with our kids to instill that mindset and heart in them?