Proverbs Challenge – Chapter 17

The Lord Tests Hearts

17 Better is a dry morsel with quietness,
Than a house full of [a]feasting with strife.

A wise servant will rule over a son who causes shame,
And will share an inheritance among the brothers.

The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold,
But the Lord tests the hearts.

An evildoer gives heed to false lips;
A liar listens eagerly to a [b]spiteful tongue.

He who mocks the poor reproaches his Maker;
He who is glad at calamity will not go unpunished.

Children’s children are the crown of old men,
And the glory of children is their father.

Excellent speech is not becoming to a fool,
Much less lying lips to a prince.

A present is a precious stone in the eyes of its possessor;
Wherever he turns, he prospers.

He who covers a transgression seeks love,
But he who repeats a matter separates friends.

10 Rebuke is more effective for a wise man
Than a hundred blows on a fool.

11 An evil man seeks only rebellion;
Therefore a cruel messenger will be sent against him.

12 Let a man meet a bear robbed of her cubs,
Rather than a fool in his folly.

13 Whoever rewards evil for good,
Evil will not depart from his house.

14 The beginning of strife is like releasing water;
Therefore stop contention before a quarrel starts.

15 He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the just,
Both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord.

16 Why is there in the hand of a fool the purchase price of wisdom,
Since he has no heart for it?

17 A friend loves at all times,
And a brother is born for adversity.

18 A man devoid of [c]understanding [d]shakes hands in a pledge,
And becomes [e]surety for his friend.

19 He who loves transgression loves strife,
And he who exalts his gate seeks destruction.

20 He who has a [f]deceitful heart finds no good,
And he who has a perverse tongue falls into evil.

21 He who begets a scoffer does so to his sorrow,
And the father of a fool has no joy.

22 A merry heart [g]does good, like medicine,
But a broken spirit dries the bones.

23 A wicked man accepts a bribe [h]behind the back
To pervert the ways of justice.

24 Wisdom is in the sight of him who has understanding,
But the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth.

25 A foolish son is a grief to his father,
And bitterness to her who bore him.

26 Also, to punish the righteous is not good,
Nor to strike princes for their uprightness.

27 He who has knowledge spares his words,
And a man of understanding is of a calm spirit.
28 Even a fool is counted wise when he holds his peace;
When he shuts his lips, he is considered perceptive.

Footnotes

  1. Proverbs 17:1 Or sacrificial meals
  2. Proverbs 17:4 Lit. destructive
  3. Proverbs 17:18 Lit. heart
  4. Proverbs 17:18 Lit. strikes the hands
  5. Proverbs 17:18 guaranty or collateral
  6. Proverbs 17:20 crooked
  7. Proverbs 17:22 Or makes medicine even better
  8. Proverbs 17:23 Under cover, lit. from the bosom

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This Post Has 16 Comments

  1. Merayebu

    Proverbs Chapter 17
    In Praise of Bribes Continuing to riff on old themes, the author states that it’s better to have a little dry food with quiet (meaning, with peace) than to have feasting with strife. A slave who acts wisely will end up ruling over the foolish children of his or her master.

  2. ADEOSUN OLUGBEMI OLAGOKE

    Chapter 17
    The chapter opens with admonitions on the fact that having an unpleasant experience with peace is better than pleasant things with too many troubles.It further tells us the impact of wisdom in whatever level one found himself or herself.it further reveals that God sometimes use difficulties to examine and expose our heart.it talks about not mock the poor, exposure into wicked heart and lying tongue,grand children rejoice the heart of old men,excellent thing can never be in themouth of a fool and lying lips is not good for a prince or someone highly esteemed by God,gift is good and it brings out the glory of a man,overlooking mistake and wrong attitudes of others promote love,insight into an evil person,correction impact more into the wise than the foolish,not good to reward evil for good,is good to depart from contention on time before it escalates,judgement should be balance,
    The striking part of this chapter is in vs 16 that the whole of the book of proverb is to promote wisdom as stated in chapter 1 and that one’s heart must inclined to it before the message of wisdom can be imbibed. It talks about not good to have fools as a child,good heart is good for the body than sorrowful heart scientifically it takes 14 nerves to smile while we use 79 nerves to
    Frowns ones faces,last wisdom in speech when using word is very important.

  3. Odogun Oluwaseun Morrison

    Chapter 17 teaches about those who want to do evil and speak evil and lies use other people’s destructive methods and words as justification and reason for their evil speech and actions. Those who have corrupt desires in their hearts are more susceptible to being led away by the false and misleading teaching of others. Wise people don’t believe folly spewed forth because they pay attention to God’s Word, and they advocate for what is true, right, and good

  4. Balogun Feranmi

    This tells us about contentment. Contentment means getting satisfy with whatever one has no matter how small it is. One should also be wise

  5. Odedairo Oladele Omotayo

    Proverbs 17 is an assorted collection of wisdom sayings. The sayings do not seem to have an order; they aren’t juxtaposed on account of catchwords or a shared message. While many of the sayings employ synonymous parallelism (e.g. v. 4, 20, 21, 27-28), the use of antithetical parallelism continues to diminish (but see v. 7, 9, 22).
    Seeing that there isn’t much to speak of in terms of structure, the rest of the comment will focus on the subjects found in this chapter and their use in the rest of the book.
    V. 5 says, “He who mocks the poor affronts his Maker; He who rejoices over another’s misfortune will not go unpunished.” The idea that one’s treatment of the poor is related to one’s treatment of God is found elsewhere as well. For example, 14:31 says, “He who withholds what is due to the poor affronts his Maker; He who shows pity for the needy honors Him.” Indeed, it seems as if God plans for the rich to meet the poor: “Rich man and poor man meet; The LORD made them both” (22:2). God will pay back anyone who helps the poor: “He who is generous to the poor makes a loan to the LORD; He will repay him his due” (19:17).
    One of the light motifs in the chapter is family, especially children. V. 6 says, “Grandchildren are the crown of their elders, And the glory of children is their parents.”
    V. 21 says, “One begets a dullard to one’s own grief; The father of a villain has no joy,” and v. 25 says, “A stupid son is vexation for his father And a heartache for the woman who bore him.”
    V. 9 speaks about holding a grudge, “He who seeks love overlooks faults, But he who harps on a matter alienates his friend.” The person who “lets things go” is praised in 19:11, “A man shows intelligence by his forebearance; It is his glory when he overlooks an offense.” This “wisdom teaching” is actually found as a command in Lev. 19:18, albeit with different vocabulary: “You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against your countrymen. Love your fellow as yourself: I am the LORD.”
    V. 14 has a related message, namely to avoid strife: “To start a quarrel (madon) is to open a sluice; Before a dispute flares up, drop it.” This message is repeated often in Proverbs, albeit in variegated ways. For example, 26:21 gives a metaphor, “Charcoal for embers and wood for a fire And a contentious man (‘ish medonim) for kindling strife.” Prov. 15:8 is more forthright, “A hot-tempered man provokes a quarrel (madon); A patient man calms strife.” Some verses speak about a bickering wife. For example, 21:29 emphatically states, “It is better to live in the desert Than with a contentious, vexatious wife (‘eshet medanim).” How can one avoid strife? V 27-28 offer a possible answer, “A knowledgeable man is sparing with his words; A man of understanding is reticent. Even a fool, if he keeps silent, is deemed wise; Intelligent, if he seals his lips.” Indeed, there is a recommendation in the book of Job along these lines, “If you would only keep quiet It would be considered wisdom on your part” (Job 13:5).
    Two of the chapter’s sayings use excessive figures of speech to make a point about the foolish. The first is v. 10, “A rebuke works on an intelligent man More than one hundred blows on a fool.” Given that the maximum number of lashes for a crime was 40 (cf. Deut 25:3), it seems that the number “100” is an exaggeration. The verse’s message seems to be like that of 13:18, “Poverty and humiliation are for him who spurns discipline; But he who takes reproof to heart gets honor,” i.e. “be wise and accept reproof.”
    V. 12 is the second verse to employ an excessive analogy, “Sooner meet a bereaved she-bear Than a fool with his nonsense.” While we have seen warnings to stay away from fools (e.g. 14:7, “Keep your distance from a dullard, For you will not learn wise speech”), our verse is quite extreme in its analogy. The analogy of a bereaved bear is used elsewhere in Tanach. For example, Hushai tells Abshalom in 2 Sam 17:8 that “… your father and his men are courageous fighters, and they are as desperate as a bear in the wild robbed of her whelps…” Also, God describes himself as a fierce bear in Hos. 13:8, “Like a bear robbed of her young I attack them And rip open the casing of their hearts; I will devour them there like a lion, The beasts of the field shall mangle them.” The analogy of a bear (albeit not a bereaved one) is taken up again in Prov. 28:15, “A roaring lion and a prowling bear Is a wicked man ruling a helpless people.”
    V. 22 speaks of a psychomatic phenomenon, “A joyful heart makes for good health; Despondency dries up the bones.” This is seen elsewhere in Proverbs, especially 14:30: “A calm disposition gives bodily health; Passion is rot to the bones.”

  6. Akinsehinwa Queen

    The verse 1 of this chapter is what I believe most of us are facing in life. Brethren is better you stay in an healthy and happy home,relationship, job than pretending to be happy when you are not. We have seen and heard alot of things that are related to this verse but we are scared of what people will say and this is not healthy for us.
    Verse 2: we do not have the right to judge anyone, we do not have the right to mock anyone, the fact that we are on top of the world at the moment does not mean we will be the last to make it.we do not know what God has in plan for everyone. So brethren when you are rich do not mock those below your standard.
    Rewarding evil for good is not what we as Christians should indulge in rather let us reward good for evil according to Mathew 5vs 44.
    Verse 28: many at times we that claims to be wise or righteous talk when we aren’t supposed to and at the end we look like a fool. We need not confrontation at times because they might result beyond what we are expecting.

  7. Prophetess Deborah Oreofe David

    Day 17: Proverb 17:1-10. Our homes should be a place of peace to get away from the troubles of the world not a battle ground,A faithful servant will rise above an unworthy son and receive an inheritance,a wicked person travels with wicked people, their understanding is to twisted that they can not tell the difference between someone lying and telling the truth,they believe every word because they are liars too. It is a terrible thing to look down on those less fortunate than your own self ,we must take tender mercy for all the the down trodden if you are to be like our maker,we are our parents glory when we do not depart from the way they train us. We know that a fool cannot speak excellent, because an excellent speaker tells the truth in his/ her sayings,a fool has no understanding as well ,whatever comes out of his mouth should not be heeded,you can’t depend upon what he says. A gifts sometimes softens up the receive to be more cooperative with you,. Spreading bad about someone can make us to lose a friend, this is what is called gossip or whisperer, a wise man ,who carefully considers everything before acting, is not used to be scolded, but a fool is so used to being punished that even a hundred stripes won’t affect him,a fool is not teachable in nature.
    Proverb 17:11-23. A person who rebels against God will miss heaven.( Lucifer as a case study) Rebellion is very destructive, we should not involve ourselves in it,foolishness is dangerous to our well being. Always be thankful, our God blesses those who follow His commandments and reward His people for their good behavior, we must open up and let angry words fly loose,leave off the strife before it starts. God hates injustice, God does not happy with manipulators,wisdom can not be bought with the things of this earth,but it us given by God to those who fear Him and seek Him to know Him and obey Him. A true friend is there not just because good fortune has come to a person, but he’s there even during adversity, don’t be a co- debtor with another person, it is dangerous and foolish to our own path. Christians should resist the devil and cling to what is good, those who love sin also corrupt their consciences and their thinking, they dall into evil because they love it. Our joy as a parents knows no bound when we see our children growing in fear of God. Filling with joy of the Lord and not living in sin and rebellion against God, it’s like medicine to our bodies. Lastly, receiving bribes is an abomination before the Lord.

  8. Adefuwa Adedokunola E

    Better is a dry morsel with quietness: There is nothing appealing about a dry morsel. Yet the blessing of quietness and peace is so great, that it can make a dry morsel seem better than the alternative presented. “Peace and contentment, and especially domestic peace, are beyond all other blessings.”

  9. Imion Angela Ofure

    Proverbs 17, Lessons learnt:
    1. In a family, peace is more important than food and drink. The home should be a place of peace because the world is full of troubles, the home should not be a battle field.
    2. A good servant will ways be valued more than an unworthy son so be wise. An example of a good servant was Abraham’s servant who Abraham trusted so much.
    3. The Lord trieth our hearts by removing impurities same way silver and gold passes through heat to become precious ornaments.
    4. Never rejoice over people’s misfortunes. It is very wrong to look down on people. The fact that we have more than others doesn’t make us any better. Whatever we have is by God’s grace.

  10. Imion immaculate osereme

    Lessons learnt from this chapter
    God cares about all people, and He despises when the less privileged are taken advantage of, mocked, insulted, and persecuted. It is evidence of God’s love to care for the needy, the poor, and for orphans and widows in their distress (James 1:27). This does not mean that looking after the needy is more important than the gospel, but it is a way to demonstrate the love of the gospel and have open doors to share it (Matthew 5:16). It is also not loving to laugh at other people’s misfortunes. No one should be happy that wicked people will go to hell. That is a just proposition, but it is not a source of joy for those who have compassion for the masses as Christ did (Matthew 9:36). It is fine to be happy with seeing justice meted out on account of the fact that justice is good, but that is different from delighting in a person’s adversity.
    Grandchildren are the crown of old men,
    And the glory of sons is their fathers.
    Old men should be thrilled if their children and grandchildren walk after the Lord, for it is a testimony to God’s faithfulness to honor those who honor Him by being able to see children grow up and walk in the ways of the Lord. It is also true that a godly parent is an honor to a son because it is such a wonderful blessing and resource to have a God-fearing parent to go to for wisdom and understanding. It is a privilege to enjoy God together across generations.
    Excellent speech is not fitting for a fool,
    Much less are lying lips to a prince.
    Those who are in positions of authority need to devote themselves to the truth and to speaking honestly, for their example carries a lot of influence and because God holds them responsible for their stewardship of the positions that He entrusts them with (Proverbs 16:10, 12). We should not expect a fool to speak words of wisdom, and even the most eloquent speech if founded upon foolishness is still worthless babble.

  11. Gbadebo Toluwalope

    Chapter 17
    This chapter tells us about contentment and patience, in any situation we find ourselves we have to persevere and endure because it comes with many blessings. It goes further to talk about the beauty of children and having gifts. God hates a lying tongue and despises a person that isn’t repentant, he knows we are human prone to temptation but he wants us to come to him remorseful and reveal all of our sins before him. Wisdom is the principal thing because with knowledge our lips and words are guided alright

  12. Gbadebo Toluwalope

    Chapter 18
    This chapter again brings to our understanding the importance of having and using wisdom.
    The words of a man filled with wisdom is refreshing and has hope without destruction or snare like the words of a fool.
    Words, the words that come out of our mouth is very important as through that a man can be known as foolish or filled with wisdom
    The lord answers the cry of the righteous and protects them under his name. He is closer than a friend or a brother, always wants to lend an helping hand if we can call him with wisdom into any situation we find ourselves or even in our daily activities
    Pride causes downfall of a man.
    It also tells that the mind is a powerful tool in how far we go in life and how we get and use Gods given wisdom.

  13. Gbadebo omotolani Esther

    Chapter 17
    This speaks about contentment, collecting of bride will bring nothing than shame, been wise is not about saying everything at the right time it about giving ourselves caution and speaking the truth, verse 28 even the fool is counted wise wen he hold his peace when he shut his lips, he is considered perceptive

  14. Odedairo Oladele Omotayo

    Proverbs 17 is an assorted collection of wisdom sayings. The sayings do not seem to have an order; they aren’t juxtaposed on account of catchwords or a shared message (verse 27-28). While many of the sayings employ synonymous parallelism (e.g. verse 4, 20, 21, 27-28), the use of antithetical parallelism continues to diminish (but see verse 7, 9, 22). Seeing that there isn’t much to speak of in terms of structure, the rest of the comment will focus on the subjects found in this chapter and their use in the rest of the book.
    Verse 5 says, “He who mocks the poor affronts his Maker; He who rejoices over another’s misfortune will not go unpunished.” The idea that one’s treatment of the poor is related to one’s treatment of God is found elsewhere as well.
    For example, 14:31 says, “He who withholds what is due to the poor affronts his Maker; He who shows pity for the needy honours Him.” Indeed, it seems as if God plans for the rich to meet the poor: “Rich man and poor man meet; The LORD made them both” (22:2). God will pay back anyone who helps the poor: “He who is generous to the poor makes a loan to the LORD; He will repay him his due” (19:17).
    One of the light motifs in the chapter is family, especially children.
    Verse 6 says, “Grandchildren are the crown of their elders, And the glory of children is their parents.” V. 21 says, “One begets a dullard to one’s own grief; The father of a villain has no joy,” and v. 25 says, “A stupid son is vexation for his father And a heartache for the woman who bore him.”
    Verse 9 speaks about holding a grudge, “He who seeks love overlooks faults, But he who harps on a matter alienates his friend.” The person who “lets things go” is praised in 19:11, “A man shows intelligence by his forebearance; It is his glory when he overlooks an offense.”
    Verse 14 has a related message, namely to avoid strife: “To start a quarrel is to open a sluice; Before a dispute flares up, drop it.” This message is repeated often in Proverbs,
    How can one avoid strife? Verse 27-28 offer a possible answer, “A knowledgeable man is sparing with his words; A man of understanding is reticent. Even a fool, if he keeps silent, is deemed wise; Intelligent, if he seals his lips.” Indeed, there is a recommendation in the book of Job along these lines, “If you would only keep quiet It would be considered wisdom on your part” (Job 13:5).
    Two of the chapter’s sayings use excessive figures of speech to make a point about the foolish. The first is verse 10, “A rebuke works on an intelligent man More than one hundred blows on a fool.
    Verse 12 is the second verse to employ an excessive analogy, “Sooner meet a bereaved she-bear Than a fool with his nonsense.” While we have seen warnings to stay away from fools.
    Verse 22 speaks of a psychomatic phenomenon, “A joyful heart makes for good health; Despondency dries up the bones.” This is seen elsewhere in Proverbs, especially 14:30: “A calm disposition gives bodily health; Passion is rot to the bones.”

  15. Prophetess Deborah Oreofe David

    Day 19 Proverb 19:1-10. A poor nan who loves God is far wealthier than a fool because of the weight of glory and devastation of hell ,being naive names a person vulnerable and those who make hurried decisions without thinking through the and without considering the wisdom of God’s will likely make mistakes. Desires sin disappoint and leads to destruction and yet the fool has the the nerve to blame God for his own bad decisions, in eternity,he will be forced to kneel before Christ and acknowledge Him as Lord, but that will be too late to keep him from the fire of hell. Love compels a person to give as he’s able to share the gospel whenever possible,whether a person is poor or rich ,those who bear false witness may not get caught on earth,but what us so certain is that God will punish liars one day by sending them to hell unless they have been forgiven by the shed blood of His son. My own understanding concerning this verse is that gift – giving is best done secretly so that God gets the glory,the poor and less regarded desire friends and family, but too often vanish,the kindness of God leads people to reprint as they realize that God loved them so much that He gave up His son to die for them and to give them eternal life,God hates lying and false testimony, He will punish those who refuse to repent and turn to Jesus for forgiveness. A slave who has wisdom and the fear of God would do better job ruling than many of the world’s princes.
    Proverb 19:11-29 It shouldn’t be a surprised that a Christian is willing to forgive and even delight in the fact that he has the opportunity to show the grace of God by overlooking a person’s personal offense towards Him God’s favour is more valuable and the life of Joseph can testify to that fact,God’s will is for a husband and wife to be on the same page together spiritually and to be unified as he’s respected by her husband, some things money can not buy,but a godly wife( and a godly husband for that matter) is such a precious and rare to find. Laziness is not indicative of the fear of God because a proper view on gods Holiness motivates a person to order his life rightly in light of eternity and walk circumspectly and bring God a return on His investment. Even after salvation, wisdom guides the believer away from sin and into all truth so that he avoids needless harmful pitfalls that sinners regularly fall into ,those who give to the poor without seeking the approval of man do so as though they are giving to Christ Himself and God will reward them for their faithfulness in eternity. Parents that discipline in love and are diligent to teach their children the commands of God prove their love for their children. A person of great anger has a great ego and he will bear the penalty. It is a great privilege to give a child wisdom from his youth,for more needless pain can be avoided that way ,God is the master of all. People may assail Him and His word but it will stand,only those who knows Christ can truly love with a selfless,unconditional and sacrificial love. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and it leads to eternal life, reproving a wise person leads to him growing in knowledge and continuing to be honest and humble before the Lord. Even parents who are not God fearing still deserve to be treated with respect and dignity. Godly discipline is for our good and it will train us and keeping us on the way of righteousness. A fool mocks justice and can’t be relied upon to say what the innocent needs him to say or what the guilty doesn’t want to be said,Earth penalty might be severe ,but even these won’t compare to the fire of hell that awaits those who love their sins.

  16. Akinbobola Esther

    Submitting to God will make God to mould us to his will
    Verse 1 it is better to enjoy meal in peace through the Grace of God than be in the midst of quarrelling in a great feast
    Verse 5 let us all know the poor are also God creation therefore don’t mock the poor
    Verse25 We need Grace oh Lord on our children, because is a thing of sadness for righteous parents rising a bad child

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