Proverbs 10:8 KJV
The wise in heart will receive commandments:
but a prating fool shall fall.
New International Version
The wise in heart accept commands, but a chattering fool comes to ruin.
New Living Translation
The wise are glad to be instructed, but babbling fools fall flat on their faces.
English Standard Version
The wise of heart will receive commandments, but a babbling fool will come to ruin.
Berean Study Bible
A wise heart will receive commandments, but foolish lips will come to ruin.
New King James Version
The wise in heart will receive commands, But a prating fool will fall.
New American Standard Bible
The wise of heart will receive commands, But a babbling fool will come to ruin.
The wise in heart will receive commandments
The wise in heart is ready to hear and obey the precepts of God and men.
A wise — חֲכַם־ (ḥă·ḵam-) — Adjective – masculine singular construct — Wise
Heart — לֵ֭ב (lêḇ) — Noun – masculine singular — The heart, the feelings, the will, the intellect, centre
Will receive commandments
Means that it is ready to hear and obey the counsels and precepts of God, and of men, by which means he shall stand fast and live.
The wise in heart is not proud or conceited: he accepts the Divine Law with all its directions (observe the plural “commandments”), and is not above learning from others; at the same time, he makes no display of his wisdom.
Here is one of the most valuable results of wisdom.
It is not what it gives, but what it receives. It receives commandments.
This receptiveness is a prime characteristic of the new heart.
As the thirsty ground drinks in the rain, so the wise in heart long for, and live upon, God’s Word.
This receptiveness is a most precious feature of character.
Blessed are they that hunger, for they shall be filled.
Will receive — יִקַּ֣ח (yiq·qaḥ) — Verb – Qal – Imperfect – third person masculine singular — To take
Commandments — מִצְוֺ֑ת (miṣ·wōṯ) — Noun – feminine plural — Commandment
But a prating fool
A prating fool; one who is slow to hear and swift to speak, who, instead of receiving good admonitions, cavils and disputes against them.
In the Hebrew he is called אויל שׂפתים, a fool of lips,
▪︎ either because he discovers the folly of his heart by his lips, and thereby exposeth himself to the mischief here following;
▪︎ or because he is without heart, as is said of Ephraim, Hosea 7:11,
▪︎ or his heart is little worth, as is said here, Proverbs 10:20;
▪︎ or because he speaks rashly, without any consideration.
Or it may be rendered, a fool by his lips, i.e. by his foolish and wicked speeches, contrary to the commands of God, by talking much and ill, when it is more comely and necessary for him to hear and receive instruction from others.
Shall fall, to wit, into mischief; or, be punished, as the word is used, Hosea 4:14; or, be beaten, as below, Proverbs 10:10.
The fool of lips is one who is always exposing his folly.
The literal antithesis is better shown by rendering “the solid in heart,” and “the loose in lips.” (Wordsworth).
The Vulgate translates, “The fool is chastised by his lips;” i.e. the folly which he has uttered falls back upon him, and causes him to suffer punishment.
The LXX. renders the last clause, “He who is given to prating (ἄστεγος χείλεσι), walking tortuously, shall be tripped up.”
A fool of lips; a lip-fool.
- The self-conceited are generally superficial. There is much talk and little substance; words without sense; plenty of tongue, but a lack of wit. Light matter floats on the surface, and appears to all; what is solid and precious lies at the bottom. The foam is on the face of the waters; the pearl is below.
- The reference may be to the bluster of insubordination; the loud protestations and boastings of his independence on the part of the man who resists authority and determines to be “a law unto himself.” (R. Wardlaw.)
“A prating fool shall fall.” All his folly comes out.
The fool, being empty, busies himself giving out instead of taking in, and he becomes still more empty. From him that hath not shall be taken.
He is known, by the noise he makes, to be a tinkling cymbal. People would not have known that his head was so hollow if he had not been constantly ringing on it.
To receive a lesson and put it in practice implies a measure of humility; whereas to lay down the law to others is grateful incense to a man’s pride and self-importance. The Lord Himself pointed to the unsuspecting receptiveness of a little child, and said that this is the way to enter the kingdom.
But foolish — וֶאֱוִ֥יל (we·’ĕ·wîl) — Conjunctive waw | Noun – masculine singular construct — Foolish
Lips — שְׂ֝פָתַ֗יִם (p̄ā·ṯa·yim) — Noun – fd — The lip, language, a margin
Shall fall into mischief, or be punished
Will come to ruin — יִלָּבֵֽט׃ (yil·lā·ḇêṭ) — Verb – Nifal – Imperfect – third person masculine singular — To overthrow, intransposed, to fall.
When you hear a command from Scripture,
- do you wince?
- How about rationalize?
- How about transferring the responsibility to someone else?
Or, do you obey to honor the Father?
- A wise heart accepts the commands of God as a blessing and a safeguard.
- A fool finds a way around the personal application of the command.
- Which of the two are you?”
- Thank your heavenly Father for loving you enough to show you His truth.
- Thank your heavenly Father for loving you enough to teach you His commands.
- Ask the Lord to use your obedience to form His character in you.
- Ask the Lord to make your example to be a good influence over those He has placed in your life.
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