corner graphic

Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Proverbs 12:18

 

 

There is one who speaks rashly like the thrusts of a sword, But the tongue of the wise brings healing.

Adam Clarke Commentary

There is that speaketh - Instead of בוטה boteh, blabbing out, blustering, several MSS. have בוטח boteach, Trusting: and instead of כמדקרות kemadkeroth, As the piercings, seven MSS., with the Complutensian Polyglot, have במדקרות bemadkeroth, In the piercings. "There is that trusteth in the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health." But I suppose the former to be the true reading.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/proverbs-12.html. 1832.

The Biblical Illustrator

Proverbs 12:18

The tongue of the wise is health.

Healthy and unhealthy speech

Some men pride themselves on the pungency of their speech. They delight in sharp answers, keen retorts, quick repartees, and boast themselves when they cut their opponents in two. There are others who are gifted in the expression of complaint, reproach, and criticism against the whole providence of life. They can say sharp and bitter things about God and man, and they can be satisfied because of the edge of their own epigram, no matter against whom or against what that edge is directed. The tongue of the wise man is slower, but healthier; the wise man weighs his words: he is anxious to be associated only with judgments that can be confirmed by experience and illustrated by wisdom. The wise man speaks healthily--that is to say, he speaks out of the abundance of his own health, and he speaks in a way that will double and strengthen the health of others. To come near him is to ascend a mountain and breathe the freshest air of heaven, or to go down by the seashore and receive messages across the great deeps, full of vigour, and truth, and strengthening influence. Wise men keep society healthy. But for their presence it would stagnate, and go from one degree of corruption to another until it became wholly pestilential. There are two speakers in the text, to the end of time there will probably be two speakers in the world--the critical speaker and the judicial speaker; the man all sharpness and the man all thankfulness. The business of Christian discipline is to tame the tongue, to chasten it, to teach it the speech of wisdom, and to instruct it as to the right time of utterance and the right time of silence. (J. Parker, D.D.)


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Proverbs 12:18". The Biblical Illustrator. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/proverbs-12.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

"There is that speaketh rashly like the piercings of a sword; But the tongue of the wise is health."

Toy's rendition is: "Some men's chatter is like sword-thrusts, but the tongue of the wise is healing."[26]


Copyright Statement
James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Bibliography
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/proverbs-12.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword,.... Whose words are like sharp swords, cutting, wounding, dividing, killing; see Psalm 57:4; such are the words of false witnesses, who by their false testimonies and perjuries are as guilty of the murder of men as cutthroats; such are the words of slanderers, backbiters, and talebearers, who grieve the innocent, wound their characters, destroy their good name and credit, and separate chief friends; and such are the words of antichrist, who looks like a lamb, but speaks like a dragon, Revelation 13:11;

but the tongue of the wise is health; or "healing"F5מרפא "medicinae", Junius & Tremellius; "medicina", Piscator, Cocceius; "sanatio", Michaelis; "sanatrix", Schultens. ; by giving a faithful testimony which sets matters right; by clearing and defending the character of those who are falsely accused and wrongfully charged; by making up differences, and reconciling persons at variance through the detracting and lying insinuations of others; and by speaking comfortable, cheerful, and refreshing words to the injured and abused; especially the tongue of a wise minister of the Gospel is health, or healing, to wounded souls, to whom he ministers the Gospel of the grace of God, which directs to Christ for healing, peace, pardon, righteousness, and eternal life.


Copyright Statement
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/proverbs-12.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

There is that speaketh like the piercings of i a sword: but the tongue of the wise [is] health.

(i) Which seek nothing more then to provoke others to anger.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/proverbs-12.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

speaketh — literally, “speaketh hastily,” or indiscreetly (Psalm 106:33), as an angry man retorts harsh and provoking invectives.

tongue … health — by soothing and gentle language.


Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/proverbs-12.html. 1871-8.

Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament

18 There is that babbleth like the thrusts of a sword,

But the tongue of the wise is healing.

The second (cf. Proverbs 11:24) of the proverbs beginning with ישׁ . The verb בּטה ( בּטא ), peculiar to the Hebr., which in the modern Hebr. generally means “to speak out” ( מבטא in the grammar: the pronunciation) (according to which the lxx, Syr., and Targ. translate it by אמר ), means in biblical Hebr., especially with reference to the binding of oneself by an oath (Leviticus 5:4), and to solemn protestations (Numbers 30:7, Numbers 30:9, according to which Jerome, promittit ): to utter incautiously in words, to speak without thought and at random, referred erroneously by Gesenius to the R. בט , to be hollow, probably a word imitative of the sound, like the Greek βατταρίζειν , to stammer, and βαττολογεῖν , to babble, which the lexicographers refer to a talkative person of the name of Βάττος , as our “ salbadern ” [= to talk foolishly] owes its origin to one Jenaer Bader on the Saal. Theod. and the Graec. Venet. give the false reading בּוטח ( πεποιθώς ). כּמדקרות חרב stands loco accusativi , the כּ being regarded as a noun: ( effutiens verba ) quae sunt instar confossionum gladii (Fl.). We also call such a man, who bridles his loquacity neither by reflection nor moderates it by indulgent reference to his fellow-men, a Schwertmaul (sword-mouth) or a Schandmaul (a mouth of shame = slanderer), and say that he has a tongue like a sword. But on the other hand, the tongue of the wise, which is in itself pure gentleness and a comfort to others, since, far from wounding, rather, by means of comforting, supporting, directing exhortation, exercises a soothing an calming influence. Regarding רפא , whence מרפּא , Dietrich in Gesenius' Lex. is right. The root-meaning of the verb רפא (cognate רפה , to be loose, Hiph . to let go, Hithpa . Proverbs 18:9, to show oneself slothful) is, as the Arab. kindred word rafâ , rafa , raf , rawf ( râf ) shows, that of stilling, softening, soothing, whence arises the meaning of healing (for which the Arab. has ṭabb and 'alkh ); the meaning to repair, to mend, which the Arab. rafâ and rafa have, does not stand in a prior relation to to heal, as might appear from Job 13:4, but is a specializing of the general idea of reficere lying in mitigare , just as the patcher is called ἀκέστρια = ἠπήτρια ,

(Note: Whether ῥάπτειν , explained neither by Curtius nor by Flick, stands in a relation to it, we leave out of view.)

from ἀκέομαι , which means equally to still and to heal. Since thus in רפא the meanings of mitigating and of healing are involved, it is plain that מרפא , as it means healing (the remedy) and at the same time (cf. θεραπεία , Revelation 22:2) the preservation of health, Proverbs 4:22; Proverbs 6:15; Proverbs 16:24; Proverbs 29:1, so also may mean mildness (here and Proverbs 15:4), tranquillity (Proverbs 14:30; Ecclesiastes 10:4, calm patience in contrast to violent passion), and refreshing (Proverbs 13:17). Oetinger and Hitzig translate here “medicine;” our translation, “healing (the means of healing),” is not essentially different from it.


Copyright Statement
The Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament is a derivative of a public domain electronic edition.

Bibliography
Keil, Carl Friedrich & Delitzsch, Franz. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/proverbs-12.html. 1854-1889.

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

The tongue is death or life, poison or medicine, as it is used. 1. There are words that are cutting and killing, that are like the piercings of a sword. Opprobrious words grieve the spirits of those to whom they are spoken, and cut them to the heart. Slanders, like a sword, wound the reputation of those of whom they are uttered, and perhaps incurably. Whisperings and evil surmises, like a sword, divide and cut asunder the bounds of love and friendship, and separate those that have been dearest to each other. 2. There are words that are curing and healing: The tongue of the wise is health, closing up those wounds which the backbiting tongue had given, making all whole again, restoring peace, and accommodating matters in variance and persuading to reconciliation. Wisdom will find out proper remedies against the mischiefs that are made by detraction and evil-speaking.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Henry, Matthew. "Complete Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhm/proverbs-12.html. 1706.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Whisperings and evil surmises, like a sword, separate those that have been dear to each other. The tongue of the wise is health, making all whole.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary

on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhn/proverbs-12.html. 1706.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

Health — Tends to the comfort and benefit of others.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/proverbs-12.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Proverbs 12:18 There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise [is] health.

Ver. 18. There is that speaketh lies like the piercings of a sword.] False witnesses do so, with a witness. As Doeg, [Psalms 52:2] and his fellow hacksters with their murdering weapons in David’s bones, [Psalms 42:10] whereby they killed him alive, and buried him in their throats, those gaping graves, open sepulchres. Abimelech and his fellow priests were killed with the tongue, as with a tuck or rapier; so was Naboth and his sons; so was our Saviour Christ himself. Reckon thou Shimei and Rabshakeh among the first and chiefest kill Christs, [Acts 2:23; Acts 3:15] saith one, because ever an honest mind is more afflicted with words than blows. You shall find some, saith Erasmus, that if death be threatened, can despise it; but to be belied they cannot brook, nor from revenge contain themselves. How was David enraged by Nabal’s railings! Moses, by the people’s murmurings! Jeremiah, by the derisions of the rude rabble. [Jeremiah 20:7-8]

But the tongue of the wise is health.] Or, A medicine, as the tench is to the wounded fishes; or as that noble Lady Eleanor’s tongue was to her husband, Prince Edward, afterward Edward I, who, being traitorously wounded by a poisoned knife in the Holy Land, was perfectly cured by her daily licking his rankling wounds whilst he slept, and yet herself received no harm; (a) so sovereign a medicine is a good tongue, anointed with the virtue of love and wisdom. Wholesome words, as certain salves or treacles, cure the wounds of afflicted hearts, and extract the poison infused by evil tongues.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/proverbs-12.html. 1865-1868.

The Popular Commentary by Paul E. Kretzmann

v. 18. There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword, his speeches being as rude and sharp as knife thrusts, their intention being to hurt and injure; but the tongue of the wise is health, healing, intended to overcome the effect of sharp speeches and to bind up the wounds inflicted by foolish babblers.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Kretzmann, Paul E. Ph. D., D. D. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Kretzmann's Popular Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kpc/proverbs-12.html. 1921-23.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Speaketh like the piercings of a sword, hurtful and pernicious words, whereby they either corrupt men’s minds and manners, or scandalize them, or injure them in their reputation, estate, or life, or otherwise.

The tongue of the wise is health; his speech, both in judgment and in common discourse, is sound and wholesome in itself, and tending to the comfort and benefit of others.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/proverbs-12.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

18. There is that speaketh — Prates or babbles.

Piercings of a sword — Like knife-thrusts. His words are daggers.

But the tongue of the wise is health — Or healing; heals the wounds made by the idle and malicious babblers. Compare Psalms 57:4; Psalms 59:7.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/proverbs-12.html. 1874-1909.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

Thoughtless or critical speech can wound others. Transparent sharing can wound the speaker. Transparent sharing is good, but we must practice it wisely. [Note: See my comments on10:19.] Wise people do not cause harm by their reckless talk.

"The sage is not primarily interested in winning debates, and he avoids speech which creates bitterness and erects barriers between himself and others." [Note: McKane, p446.]


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/proverbs-12.html. 2012.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Promiseth. Septuagint, "there are, who speaking, wound with the sword; but," &c. Hebrew bote (Haydock) means also, making a foolish promise, which causes remorse. (Menochius) --- This was the case with Herod, when he was pleased with Herodias, Matthew xiv. 8. (Calmet) --- Hebrew, "speaketh like the piercings of the sword," (Protestants; Haydock) as detractors, and those who disseminate impious and scandalous maxims do.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/proverbs-12.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

like the piercings, &c. Illustrations: Saul (1 Samuel 20:30; and Proverbs 18:21. Compare Psalms 57:4, and Proverbs 16:27); Doeg (1 Samuel 22:9-19); Jews (John 8:48); Jeremiah (Lamentations 3:14. Hebrews 11:36).

piercings = stabs. Occurs only here.

tongue. Put by Figure of speech Metonymy (of Cause), App-6, for what is spoken by it.

is health. Illustrations: Jethro (Exodus 18:17-26); Abigail (1 Samuel 25:24-33); the woman (2 Samuel 20:16); Stephen (Acts 7:59. Compare Proverbs 22:20).


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/proverbs-12.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

There is that speaketh [Hebrew, babbleth, bowTeh (H981)] like the piercings of a sword (Psalms 57:4) but the tongue of the wise is health. Compare with the first clause the last clause of Proverbs 12:17. The tongue of the godly wise not only does not wound, but it heals the wounds inflicted by the ungodly, by excusing and defending the innocent, and by making up quarrels. It is not enoch not to bring forth bad fruit; we must bring forth good fruit.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/proverbs-12.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(18) There is that speaketh.—Rather, that babbleth, like the piercing of a sword, that chatters on, not noticing or caring how he may wound the feelings of others by his inconsiderate remarks.

The tongue of the wise is health.—Or, healing; soothing the wounds made by the other’s indiscriminate chatter.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/proverbs-12.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.
that
25:18; Psalms 52:2; 57:4; 59:7; 64:3; James 3:6-8
like
Compare.
Revelation 1:16
but
10:20,21; 13:17; 15:7; 16:24; Daniel 11:33; Revelation 22:2

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:18". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/proverbs-12.html.

To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use our convenient contact form
Powered by Lightspeed Technology