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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Proverbs 14:7

 

 

Leave the presence of a fool, Or you will not discern words of knowledge.

Adam Clarke Commentary

When thou perceivest not - the lips of knowledge - Instead of דעת daath, knowledge, several MSS. have שקר sheker, a lie. How this reading came I cannot conjecture. The meaning of the adage is plain: Never associate with a vain, empty fellow, when thou perceivest he can neither convey nor receive instruction.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/proverbs-14.html. 1832.

The Biblical Illustrator

Proverbs 14:7

Go from the presence of a foolish man.

The society to be shunned

Man is a social being. The text holds up the society which we should avoid--the society of the foolish.

I. It is unprofitable. What you want in society is knowledge. True knowledge shall--

1. Rightly guide.

2. Truly comfort.

3. Religiously inspire the soul.

But such knowledge is not to be got from the foolish man. He has no power to help you, and therefore time spent in his society is waste.

II. It is misleading. “The folly of fools is deceit.”

1. They cheat themselves. They fancy they have the true ideas, and the true pleasures, but it is a miserable delusion.

2. They cheat others. They mislead by the falsehood of their speech and the craftiness of their policy.

3. It is wicked. They “make a mock at sin.” “Go, then, “from the presence of a foolish man.” Seek the society of the wise. (D. Thomas, D.D.)

Safety in flight

It is the intention of their Maker that some creatures should seek safety, not in fighting, but in fleeing. In the moral conflict of human life it is of great importance to judge rightly when we should fight and when we should flee. The weak might escape if they knew their own weakness, and kept out of harm’s way. That courage is not a virtue which carries the feeble into the lion’s jaws. To go in among the foolish for the rescue of the sinking may be necessary, but it is dangerous work, and demands robust workmen. Your first duty is your own safety. But on some persons at some times there lies the obligation to encounter danger for the safety of a neighbour. (W. Arnot, D.D.)


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Proverbs 14:7". The Biblical Illustrator. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/proverbs-14.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

"Go into the presence of a foolish man, And thou shalt not perceive in him the lips of knowledge."

"Stay away from foolish people; they have nothing to teach you."[6] "Stay away from a foolish man, for you will not find knowledge on his lips."[7] "Leave the presence of a fool, for there you do not meet words of knowledge."[8] The same thing may be said in many ways.


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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 14:7". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/proverbs-14.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Go from the presence of a foolish man,.... A wicked one; avoid him, shun his company, depart from him, have no fellowship with him, it, being dangerous, infectious, and hurtful;

when thou perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge; when it is observed that his lips pour out foolishness, what is corrupt and unsavoury, unchaste and filthy; what does not minister grace to the hearers, nor is for the use of edifying, nor any ways improving in useful knowledge, but all the reverse: the Targum is,

"for there is no knowledge in his lips,'

in what is expressed by them; some understand this ironically, and render the words thus, "go right against a foolish man"F6לכ מנגד לאיש כסיל "e regione viri stulti", De Dieu; so Gussetius, p. 495. and Schultens ; join in company with him, "and thou shalt not know the lips of knowledge", or learn anything by him; if you have a mind to be ignorant, keep company with a foolish man; so Jarchi and Gersom: or rather to this sense the words may be rendered, "go to a foolish man, seeing thou knowest not the lips of knowledge"F7"Abi ut stes cora in viro stolido", Cocceius. , since thou dost not approve of wise and knowing men, whose lips would teach knowledge; and despisest the Gospel, and Gospel ministers the pope of Rome, as Cocceius on the text serves, and hear him, what his holiness and infallibility says; or some other false teacher.


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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 14:7". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/proverbs-14.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Avoid the society of those who cannot teach you.


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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 14:7". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/proverbs-14.html. 1871-8.

Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament

Three proverbs regarding fools:

7 Go from the presence of a foolish man,

And surely thou hast not known lips of knowledge;

i.e. , surely hast not brought into experience that he possesses lips which express experimental knowledge, or: surely thou must confess on reflection that no prudent word has come forth from his mouth. If 7b were intended to assign a motive, then the expression would be כּי בל־תּדע or וּבל־תּדע (Isaiah 44:9), according to which Aquila and Theodotion translate, καὶ οὐ μὴ γνῷς . נגד is the sphere of vision, and מנּגד denotes either away from the sphere of vision, as e.g. , Isaiah 1:16, or, inasmuch as מן is used as in מעל , מתּחת , and the like: at a certain distance from the sphere of vision, but so that one keeps the object in sight, Genesis 21:16. נגד ל denotes, as the inverted expression Deuteronomy 28:66 shows, over against any one, so that he has the object visibly before him, and מנּגד ל , Judges 20:34, from the neighbourhood of a place where one has it in view. So also here: go away from the vis-à-vis ( vis = visûs ) of the foolish man, if thou hast to do with such an one; whence, 7b, follows what he who has gone away must on looking back say to himself. בל (with the pret. as e.g. , Isaiah 33:23) expresses a negative with emphasis. Nolde and others, also Fleischer, interpret 7b relatively: et in quo non cognoveris labia scientiae . If וּבל־ידע were the expression used, then it would be explained after Proverbs 9:13, for the idea of the foolish man is extended: and of such an one as absolutely knows not how to speak anything prudent. But in וּבל־ידעתּ the relative clause intended must be indicated by the added בּו : and of such an one in whom... Besides, in this case וּלא ( vid ., Psalms 35:15) would have been nearer than וּבל . The lxx has modified this proverb, and yet has brought out nothing that is correct; not only the Syr., but also Hitzig follows it, when he translates, “The foolish man hath everything before him, but lips of knowledge are a receptacle of knowledge” ( וּכלי דּעת ). It racks one's brains to find out the meaning of the first part here, and, as Böttcher rightly says, who can be satisfied with the “lips of knowledge” as the “receptacle of knowledge”?


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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 14:7". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/proverbs-14.html. 1854-1889.

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

See here, 1. How we may discern a fool and discover him, a wicked man, for he is a foolish man. If we perceive not in him the lips of knowledge, if we find there is no relish or savour of piety in his discourse, that his communication is all corrupt and corrupting, and nothing in it good and to the use of edifying, we may conclude the treasure is bad. 2. How we must decline such a one and depart from him: Go from his presence, for thou perceivest there is no good to be gotten by his company, but danger of getting hurt by it. Sometimes the only way we have of reproving wicked discourse and witnessing against it is by leaving the company and going out of the hearing of it.


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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 14:7". "Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhm/proverbs-14.html. 1706.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

We discover a wicked man if there is no savour of piety in his discourse.


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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. "Concise Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary

on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhn/proverbs-14.html. 1706.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Proverbs 14:7 Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not [in him] the lips of knowledge.

Ver. 7. Go from the presence of a foolish man.] If he be a proud fool, as Proverbs 14:6, a scorner and derider of good counsel, and one that knows not how to lisp out the least syllable of savoury language, break off society with such as soon as may be; for what good can be gotten by their company or conference? "Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?" They infect the very air they breathe upon, and are therefore called λοιμοι, pests, (a) according to the Septuagint, [Psalms 1:1] their tongues have the very plague in them; "their breath as fire shall devour you." [Isaiah 33:11] Non potest vir ille sine convitiis quenquam a quo dissentit vel in levissimis, nominare, saith Dr Rivet concerning Bishop Montague; that man hath not the power to forbear railing at any one that dissents from him, though in never so small a matter. Is there any good to be gotten by such? Do not "their words eat as a gangrene." [2 Timothy 2:17]


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/proverbs-14.html. 1865-1868.

The Popular Commentary by Paul E. Kretzmann

v. 7. Go from the presence of a foolish man, it being a matter of wisdom for a person to keep his distance from such a one, when thou perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge, remembering that lie has never yet uttered a truly sensible word.


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Bibliography
Kretzmann, Paul E. Ph. D., D. D. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "Kretzmann's Popular Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kpc/proverbs-14.html. 1921-23.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Proverbs 14:7. Go from the presence of a foolish man The LXX read, All things are contrary to a foolish man; but wise lips are the arms of understanding. We may, perhaps, read the passage thus: "Depart from the presence of a fool, and one who understands not, or regards not, the lips of knowledge." See Grey.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/proverbs-14.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Avoid the company and conversation of ungodly men, when they break forth into foolish or wicked discourses, lest thou either be infected by them, or seem to approve of them.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/proverbs-14.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

7. Go from the presence — The original of the proverb is obscure; but probably our version gives the sense.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/proverbs-14.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Prudence. Thou wilt presently perceive his weakness. Hebrew, "abandon a," &c. He is not capable of hearing reason: keep at a distance.


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/proverbs-14.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

foolish. Hebrew. kesil. See note on Proverbs 1:7. Same word as in verses: Proverbs 14:16, Proverbs 14:33; not the same word as in verses: Proverbs 14:1, Proverbs 14:3, Proverbs 14:9, Proverbs 1:17, Proverbs 1:18, Proverbs 1:29.

man. Hebrew. "ish. App-14.

When thou perceivest not = "And acknowledge not". Hebrew. yada to know, as in verses: Proverbs 14:10, Proverbs 14:33, &c.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/proverbs-14.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge.

Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not (in him) the lips of knowledge. So Michaelis. Maurer, after L. DeDieu, translates, 'Go so as to stand opposite a foolish man, and you will not perceive (discover) in him the lips of knowledge' - i:e., any knowledge proceeding from his lips. But the Hebrew particle, min (Hebrew #4480), "from," implies removal to a distance [ mineged (Hebrew #5048)] (Genesis 21:16; Psalms 31:22). Though the other sense is possible [ex enantias, ex adverso], (Numbers 2:2 margin) Avoid intimacy with the ungodly fool, lest thou become polluted thereby; also lest the weak be unsettled by thy example, and lest the wicked take occasion thence of slumbering in, their sins; and lastly, lest time be lost by it. 'The indication of piety and of impiety is most readily and surely sought from the use made of the tongue' (Matthew 12:37). The proverb says, 'Speak, that I may see what you are' (T. Cartwright)).


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/proverbs-14.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(7) Go from the presence of a foolish man—(khesîl)—i.e. a dull, stupid one, when the time comes that you see you can do him no good; for “evil communications corrupt good manners.” Thus Samuel “came no more to see Saul,” when he saw that remonstrances were unavailing with him, though he continued to “mourn” for him, remembering from what high estate he had fallen.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/proverbs-14.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge.
9:6; 13:20; 19:27; 1 Corinthians 5:11; Ephesians 5:11

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Proverbs 14:7". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/proverbs-14.html.

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