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Proverbs 30

1 - The words of Agur the son of Jakeh; the revelation:the man says to Ithiel,to Ithiel and Ucal:
2 - "Surely I am the most ignorant man,and don't have a man's understanding.
3 - I have not learned wisdom,neither do I have the knowledge of the Holy One.
4 - Who has ascended up into heaven, and descended?Who has gathered the wind in his fists?Who has bound the waters in his garment?Who has established all the ends of the earth?What is his name, and what is his son's name, if you know?
5 - "Every word of God is flawless.He is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
6 - Don't you add to his words,lest he reprove you, and you be found a liar.
7 - "Two things I have asked of you;don't deny me before I die:
8 - Remove far from me falsehood and lies.Give me neither poverty nor riches.Feed me with the food that is needful for me;
9 - lest I be full, deny you, and say, 'Who is The LORD?'or lest I be poor, and steal,and so dishonor the name of my God.
10 - "Don't slander a servant to his master,lest he curse you, and you be held guilty.
11 - There is a generation that curses their father,and doesn't bless their mother.
12 - There is a generation that is pure in their own eyes,yet are not washed from their filthiness.
13 - There is a generation, oh how lofty are their eyes!Their eyelids are lifted up.
14 - There is a generation whose teeth are like swords,and their jaws like knives,to devour the poor from the earth, and the needy from among men.
15 - "The leach has two daughters:'Give, give.'"There are three things that are never satisfied;four that don't say, 'Enough:'
16 - Sheol ,the barren womb;the earth that is not satisfied with water;and the fire that doesn't say, 'Enough.'
17 - "The eye that mocks at his father,and scorns obedience to his mother:the ravens of the valley shall pick it out,the young eagles shall eat it.
18 - "There are three things which are too amazing for me,four which I don't understand:
19 - The way of an eagle in the air;the way of a serpent on a rock;the way of a ship in the middle of the sea;and the way of a man with a maiden.
20 - "So is the way of an adulterous woman:she eats and wipes her mouth,and says, 'I have done nothing wrong.'
21 - "For three things the earth tremble,and under four, it can't bear up:
22 - For a servant when he is king;a fool when he is filled with food;
23 - for an unloved woman when she is married;and a servant who is heir to her mistress.
24 - "There are four things which are little on the earth,but they are exceedingly wise:
25 - the ants are not a strong people,yet they provide their food in the summer.
26 - The conies are but a feeble folk,yet make they their houses in the rocks.
27 - The locusts have no king,yet they advance in ranks.
28 - You can catch a lizard with your hands,yet it is in kings' palaces.
29 - "There are three things which are stately in their march,four which are stately in going:
30 - The lion, which is mightiest among animals,and doesn't turn away for any;
31 - the greyhound,the male goat also;and the king against whom there is no rising up.
32 - "If you have done foolishly in lifting up yourself,or if you have thought evil,put your hand over your mouth.
33 - For as the churning of milk produces butter,and the wringing of the nose produces blood;so the forcing of wrath produces strife."
Proverbs Images and Notes

The Book of Proverbs

Proverbs 3:5-6 - Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Proverbs 15:1-4 - A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness. The eyes of the LORD [are] in every place, beholding the evil and the good. A wholesome tongue [is] a tree of life: but perverseness therein [is] a breach in the spirit.

Proverbs 17:12-13 - Let a bear robbed of her whelps meet a man, rather than a fool in his folly. Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house.

The Old Testament - A Brief Overview

Bible Survey - Proverbs
Hebrew Name - Mishley "proverbs"
Greek Name - Paroimiae (Greek form of the Hebrew )
Author - Solomon (According to Tradition)
Date - 1000 BC Approximately
Theme - It is wise to obey God
Types and Shadows - In Proverbs Jesus is true wisdom

Illustration of Solomon's Temple
Illustration of Solomon's Temple on Mount Moriah

Summary of The Book of Proverbs

The Proverbs are a collection of wise sayings that, although they were written in ancient times, their principles are for all men in every age, and every walk of life. The ultimate message in the book of Proverbs is that fearing the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. There is no greater principle that was taught by both David and Solomon than acknowledging God's presence in everything in life, and taking heed to everything He says.

Proverbs 1:1 indicates that the whole collection was called "the Proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel." Technically a proverb is a profound maxim or epigrammatic saying that, if pondered on for a length of time there is deep meaning associated with it. Proverbs was not uncommon in the ancient world, but the concept of fearing a single God who is the only God and the giver of life, was completely foreign in a world filled with polytheism.

Solomon was the son of David who was chosen to build the Temple. His name comes from the Hebrew word for peace (shalom), and he is recognized in the Bible as the ultimate peacemaker King in the history of the kingdom of  Israel. The book of Proverbs not only names Solomon as the author in the very first verse, but there are other verses that indicate that Solomon was the person responsible for the Proverbs (Proverbs 10:1; Proverbs 25:1).

The book of Kings indicates that Solomon was blessed with wisdom from God (1 Kings 4:29), he was a man of humility (1 Kings 3:7), and a great diplomat (1 Kings 3:16-28; 1 Kings 5:12) to such an extent that people came from all over the world to hear his wisdom (1 Kings 4:30; 1 Kings 10:1-13). The book of Kings also indicates that Solomon wrote over 3000 proverbs (1 Kings 4:32), and this is many more than the book of Proverbs contains.

Solomon's Wisdom. David had chosen Solomon to sit upon the throne of Israel and serve the Lord. After Solomon had removed his enemies, he allied with the Pharaoh of Egypt, and took Pharaoh's daughter to be his wife. Solomon had thought intensely about his task to build a house for the Lord, the Temple in Jerusalem. He went to offer sacrifices to the Lord at Gibeon and that night the Lord appeared to him in a dream saying "ask what you will and I will give it to you" and Solomon said "you have shown great mercy to your servant David, my father, even as he walked before you in truth and justice and with an upright heart. You have continued your great mercy toward him and given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is today. And now, O Lord God, you have made your servant King succeeding David, my father. I am but a child, and know not how to act. You have chosen me to be king over so many that they cannot be counted. Give me, therefore, an understanding heart, to judge your people and to discern between good and evil." The Lord was pleased with Solomon's request and said, "because you have not asked for long life or riches, nor for the death of your enemies, but have asked wisdom for yourself to discern what is right, I have done for you as you asked, and have given you a wise and understanding heart, so much so that you are unlike anyone before you, nor shall there be anyone like you after. Yes, and the things also which you did not ask, I have given you: that is, riches and glory, so that you are incomparable with all previous kings. And if you will walk in my ways, and keep my precepts and my commandments, as your father, I will lengthen your life." (see 1 Kings 3 and 2 Chronicles 1).

Outline of the Book of Proverbs

Proverbs 1-9, Solomon addresses the young. His words are arranged in a series of discourses in praise of wisdom. A personification of Wisdom speaks as an instructor, warning against all manner of folly. The proverbs in this section are arranged with more continuity than is seen in succeeding chapters.

Proverbs 10-22:16 are the "proverbs of Solomon," and this section is usually thought to be the original nucleus around which the remainder of the book was constructed.

Proverbs 22:17-24 :22 contains advice for those in responsible positions, calling it "the words of the wise." Proverbs 24:23-29 are designated as "the proverbs of Solomon which the wise men of Hezekiah copied out." These are in the form of detached statements, although there are occasional signs of continuity. There are also sayings on related subjects such as rulers, sluggards and fools.

Proverbs 30, the sayings of Agur, and Proverbs 31, the great chapter on womanhood which purports to come from the mother of King Lemuel which was constructed in acrostic form, the verses beginning with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet. This last chapter completes this book of Hebrew wisdom.


House of David Inscription - Tel Dan Stele

Tel Dan Stele - House of David Inscription
1 Kings 2:11 - And the days that David reigned over Israel [were] forty years: seven years reigned he in Hebron, and thirty and three years reigned he in Jerusalem.

An inscription containing the words "house of David" was found on a black basalt stone slab called the Tel Dan Stele, from Tel Dan, Israel, 9th Century B.C.

Quick Reference Map
Map of the Empires of David and Solomon
Map of the Empires of David and Solomon (Click to Enlarge)

Quick Reference Maps - Proverbs

The Kingdom of Solomon during the Proverbs

The Empire of David and Solomon during the Chronicles

Solomon's Temple Illustration

The First Day. Light.

Proverbs Resources

Samuel the Prophet
Saul, Israel's First King
King David
King Solomon

More About the Book of Proverbs
Proverbs in the Picture Study Bible
Timeline of the Ancient World
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