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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Proverbs 13:16

 

 

Every prudent man acts with knowledge, But a fool displays folly.

Adam Clarke Commentary

The way of transgressors is hard - Never was a truer saying; most sinners have more pain and difficulty to get their souls damned, than the righteous have, with all their cross-bearings, to get to the kingdom of heaven.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/proverbs-13.html. 1832.

The Biblical Illustrator

Proverbs 13:16

Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open his folly.

The wise and the foolish

I. The wise man. “He dealeth with knowledge.” This implies--

1. That he has knowledge. Knowledge is essential to a wise man. All true knowledge has its foundation in God. There is no knowledge that includes Him not. It implies--

2. That a wise man treats his knowledge wisely. “He dealeth with knowledge.” A man may have a great deal of knowledge, and no wisdom. Wisdom consists in the right application of knowledge. The wise man so deals with his knowledge as to culture his own nature and promote the real progress of his race. “Perfect freedom,” says Plato, “hath four parts--viz., wisdom, the principle of doing things aright; justice, the principle of doing things equally in public and private; fortitude, the principle of not flying danger, but meeting it; and temperance, the principle of subduing desires, and living moderately.”

II. The foolish man. Foolish men show their folly in at least two ways.

1. By talking about things of which they know little or nothing. There are two notable facts in human nature. Empty-minded persons are generally talkative. The thinker, discerning difficulties in every turn, moves cautiously, reverently, and even with hesitation.

2. By attempting things which they are incapable of achieving. The foolish man knows not his aptitudes and inaptitudes. Hence he is seen everywhere, striving to be what he never can be; to do that which he never can accomplish. (D. Thomas, D.D.)


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Proverbs 13:16". The Biblical Illustrator. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/proverbs-13.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

"Every prudent man worketh with knowledge; But a fool flaunteth his folly."

"Every prudent man acts out of knowledge, but a fool exposes his folly."[24] "The prudent man here is the opposite of a knave."[25] The `fool' in Proverbs is nearly always, not the mentally incompetent, but the morally delinquent.


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 13:16". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/proverbs-13.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge,.... In order to get more, and with men of knowledge for the same purpose; all he does is with knowledge and discretion; he does not meddle with things, nor has he to do with persons, he knows nothing of; he both acts and speaks with knowledge, cautiously, wisely, considering well time, place, and persons: and every wise and good man deals with evangelical knowledge, and studies to grow in the knowledge of the Gospel, and the mysteries of it; in the knowledge of Christ, and of God in Christ; the issue of which is life eternal;

but a fool layeth open his folly; or "spreads"F17יפרש "expandit", Mercerus, Gejerus, Michaelis. it; and exposes it to the view of everyone, by his foolish talk and indiscreet actions.


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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 13:16". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/proverbs-13.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

dealeth — acts with foresight.

a fool … folly — for want of caution.


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 13:16". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/proverbs-13.html. 1871-8.

Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament

16 Every prudent man acteth with understanding;

But a fool spreadeth abroad folly.

Hitzig reads, with the Syr. (but not the Targ.) and Jerome, כּל ( omnia agit ), but contrary to the Hebr. syntax. The כּל־ is not feeble and useless, but means that he always acts בּדּעת , mit Bedacht [with judgment] ( opp . בּבלי דעת , inconsulto , Deuteronomy 4:42; Deuteronomy 19:4), while on the contrary the fool displays folly. Proverbs 12:23 and Proverbs 15:2 serve to explain both members of the verse. Bedächtigkeit [judgment] is just knowledge directed to a definite practical end, a clear thought concentrated on a definite point. יקרא , he calls out, and יבּיע , he sputters out, are parallels to יפרשׂ . Fleischer: פּרשׂ , expandit ( opp . Arab. ṭawy , intra animum cohibuit ), as a cloth or paper folded or rolled together, cf. Schiller's

(Note: “ Er breitet es heiter und glänzend aus,

Das zusammengewickelte Leben .”) -

“He spreads out brightly and splendidly

The enveloped life.”

There lies in the word something derisive: as the merchant unrolls and spreads out his wares in order to commend them, so the fool does with his foolery, which he had enveloped, i.e. , had the greatest interest to keep concealed within himself - he is puffed up therewith.


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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 13:16". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/proverbs-13.html. 1854-1889.

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

Note, 1. It is wisdom to be cautious. Every prudent discreet man does all with knowledge (considering with himself and consulting with others), acts with deliberation and is upon the reserve, is careful not to meddle with that which he has not some knowledge of, not to launch out into business which he has not acquainted himself with, will not deal with those that he has not some knowledge of, whether they may be confided in. He is still dealing in knowledge, that he may increase the stock he has. 2. It is folly to be rash, as the fool is, who is forward to talk of things he knows nothing of and undertake that which he is no way fit for, and so lays open his folly and makes himself ridiculous. He began to build and was not able to finish.


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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 13:16". "Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhm/proverbs-13.html. 1706.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

It is folly to talk of things of which we know nothing, and to undertake what we are no way fit for.


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 13:16". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary

on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhn/proverbs-13.html. 1706.

Preacher's Complete Homiletical Commentary

CRITICAL NOTES.—

Pro . Dealeth with knowledge, i.e. acteth with foresight. Layeth open, rather "spreadeth abroad." Delitzsch Says, "There lies in the word something derisive; as the merchant unrolls and spreads out his wares in order to commend them, so the fool deals with his folly."

MAIN HOMILETICS OF Pro

DEALING WITH KNOWLEDGE

For a definition of prudence see Homiletics on chap. Pro , page 109. Carrying out the thought that prudence is wisdom applied to practice, we remark,

I. That a prudent man deals, or acts with knowledge from a sense of responsibility.

1. In commercial life. No prudent man will engage in any business transaction without first making himself thoroughly acquainted with it in all its bearings. He will, if possible, look far into the future and weigh probabilities and calculate results, so as to secure himself from ultimate loss. He will not deal with the matter at all unless he understands it. This we conceive is "dealing with knowledge." And it is the course pursued by every prudent man of business from a sense of responsibility. He feels that he has obligations to fulfil to others and a character to maintain, and therefore he thinks before he acts. A man who values his life at all will not deliberately walk over a precipice, and a prudent man will not go very near the edge, he will know what is the safe distance at which he may walk without even risking the possibility of a false step.

2. As a teacher or leader of others. A man who undertakes the guidance of his fellow-creatures in any way, is especially bound to "deal with knowledge." If he is a teacher of youth, and is a prudent man, he will make it his business to know his pupils, to become acquainted with the best methods of imparting instruction and developing their mental and moral powers. He feels that they are in his hands very much as clay in the hands of the potter, and that it depends very much upon him whether they become vessels of honour or of dishonour, and this invests all his dealings with them with a deep sense of responsibility. So with the statesman, the Christian teacher, or any other man who finds himself entrusted with influence over his fellows. Prudence is almost as necessary as goodness and right intentions. A man may have abundance of wealth at his disposal whereby to accomplish some desired end. But if he does not know how to use it, he may as surely miss his aim as if he were poor. So a man may have much spiritual wealth and an earnest desire to use it for the good of others, but if he is not a prudent man—if he neglects to acquire a knowledge of the how, and the when, and the where to do it, he may not only fail to realise his desire, but may cause his good to be evil spoken of. And the principle applies to every good man, however limited his sphere or humble his position. It is the special trade of a good man to do good, but he may greatly injure his trade by neglecting to "deal with knowledge." "What king," says our Lord, "going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand!" (Luk ). It is implied that this man has a sense of the importance of the undertaking upon which he is about to embark, that he duly estimates the possible loss or gain which may result from it. He may serve as an illustration of what is meant by a prudent man "dealing with knowledge" in any and every step in life, whether it be apparently great or small, weighty or trivial. For there are no little things in human life—the greatest issues often hang upon what men ignorantly call trifles.

II. A fool by rash and inconsiderate conduct "layeth open" or "publishes" his folly. It is implied by contrasting him with the prudent man who "deals with knowledge" that he deals without it, that he leaps before he looks and walks in the dark when he might avail himself of a light to guide him. Such conduct arises from a lack of the sense of responsibility. He does not consider what is involved in his failure, how much misery may thus be entailed on himself and others. Every man who does not weigh results proves himself thereby to be a fool.

OUTLINES AND SUGGESTIVE COMMENTS

He that is wise will not be doing or dealing in anything unless he know what it is wherein he dealeth, and unless he deal so as he knoweth that he should. He knoweth that a man is known by his dealing. He knoweth that others look on his dealing, and therefore he looketh so to it as that they may know him to be wise by it. But a fool will be dealing, although by dealing he uncover his nakedness. The shame of his folly shall be spread abroad as wide as his dealings are heard of.—Jermin.

Observes circumstances, and deports himself with discretion; thrusts not himself into unnecessary dangers; carves not a piece of his heart but to those he is well assured of. See an instance of this prudence in Ezra, chap. Pro ; in Nehemiah, chap. Pro 2:5. He calls it not the place of God's worship—such an expression might have disgusted the heathen king—but the place of his father's sepulchres. In Christ, when He was tried for His life; in Paul, who lived two years at Ephesus, and spake not much against the worship of their great goddess Diana (Act 23:6; Act 19:10).—Trapp.

Fools might be esteemed half-wise if they had sense enough to keep their folly to themselves.—Lawson.

Wide is the sphere for trading with this responsible talent. In the family economy (Jud ; chap. Pro 14:1; Pro 31:27). In the church; in a wise accommodation to circumstances (Gal 2:2); in the conviction of gainsayers (Tit 1:9); in forbearing with the prejudices of the weak (Act 15:22-29); in the exercise of Christian admonition (Rom 15:14).—Bridges.


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". Preacher's Complete Homiletical Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/phc/proverbs-13.html. Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1892.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open his folly.

Knowledge — Considerately and discreetly.

Layeth open — By his foolish actions.


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 13:16". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/proverbs-13.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Proverbs 13:16 Every prudent [man] dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open [his] folly.

Ver. 16. Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge.] Observes circumstances, and deports himself with discretion; thrusts not himself into unnecessary dangers; carves not a piece of his heart but to those he is well assured of. See an instance of this prudence in Ezra; [Ezra 8:22] in Nehemiah, [Nehemiah 2:5] he calls it not the place of God’s worship - such an expression that heathen king might have disgusted - but the place of his father’s sepulchres; in Esther, who concealed her stock and kindred till she saw her time; in Christ, when he was tried for his life; in Paul, [Acts 23:6; Acts 19:10] who lived two years at Ephesus, and spake not much against the worship of their great goddess Diana. [Acts 19:35; Acts 19:37] "The prudent shall keep silence in an evil time." [Amos 5:13] It is not good provoking evil men that are irreformable, nor safe pulling a bear or mad dog by the ear.

But a fool layeth open his folly.] Plasheth it, and setteth it a sunning, as it were, by his headlong, headstrong exorbitances. By his inconsiderate courses he openly bewrays and proclaims what he is; he sets his folly "upon the cliff of the rock, that it should not be covered." [Ezekiel 24:7]


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/proverbs-13.html. 1865-1868.

The Popular Commentary by Paul E. Kretzmann

v. 16. Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge, with a careful weighing of all facts as presented to him; but a fool layeth open his folly, exposing it, spreading it before the eyes of all men, showing off his folly.


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Bibliography
Kretzmann, Paul E. Ph. D., D. D. "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". "Kretzmann's Popular Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kpc/proverbs-13.html. 1921-23.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Dealeth, Heb. acteth, or

doth, manageth all his affairs, with knowledge; considerately and discreetly.

Layeth open his folly, by his heady and foolish actions.


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/proverbs-13.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

16. Dealeth with knowledge — Acts with thought, or foresight of what he is about to do.

A fool layeth open — Or spreads abroad.

His folly — The foolish man does not act with wise consideration, and, therefore, exposes his ignorance. Comp. Proverbs 12:23; Proverbs 15:2.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/proverbs-13.html. 1874-1909.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

fool. Hebrew. kesil. See note on Proverbs 1:7.

folly. Hebrew. "evil. See note on Proverbs 1:7. Illustrations: Balaam (Numbers 22:29, Numbers 22:30); Ahasuerus (Esther 3:10-15); Herod (Matthew 14:7. Mark 6:23).


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/proverbs-13.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open his folly.

Every prudent (man) dealeth with knowledge - acteth with judgment, not inconsiderately.

But a fool layeth open his folly - betrayeth it by setting about his business rashly, without knowledge or counsel, or regard to the place, the time, or the persons with whom he has to do; whereas the "prudent man" does not say or do all things at once and together, and in all places, but prudently has regard to what is suitable to the place, the time, and the persons (T. Cartwright).


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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 13:16". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/proverbs-13.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Every prudent man dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open his folly.
prudent
12:22,23; 15:2; 21:24; Psalms 112:5; Isaiah 52:13; Matthew 10:16; Romans 16:19; 1 Corinthians 14:20; Ephesians 5:17
a fool
1 Samuel 25:10,11,17,25; Ecclesiastes 10:3
layeth
Heb. spreadeth.

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Proverbs 13:16". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/proverbs-13.html.

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