Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Proverbs
Book: Proverbs
Chapter: 26


1 Honour is out of season to those unworthy and unfit for it.

2. He that is cursed without cause, the Curse shall do him No
more harm than the Bird that flies over his head. 3. Every
Creature must be dealt with according to its nature, but
careless and profligate sinners never will be ruled By reason
and persuasion. Man indeed is born like the wild Ass's colt; but
some, By the Grace of God, are changed. 4,5. We are to fit our
remarks to the Man, and address them to his Conscience, So as
may best End the debate. 6-9. Fools are not fit to be trusted,
nor to have any honour. Wise sayings, as a foolish Man delivers
and applies them, lose their usefulness. 10. This verse may
either declare how the Lord, the Creator of all men, will Deal
with sinners according to their guilt, or, how the powerful
among men should disgrace and punish the wicked. 11. The Dog
is a loathsome emblem of those sinners who return to their
vices, 2Pe 2:22. 12. We see many a one who has some little
sense, but is proud of it. This describes those who think their
spiritual state to be good, when really it is very bad. 13.
The slothful Man hates every thing that requires care and
labour. But it is foolish to frighten ourselves from real duties
By fancied difficulties. This may be applied to a Man slothful
in the duties of religion. 14. Having seen the slothful Man in
fear of his work, here we find him in Love with his ease. Bodily
ease is the sad occasion of many spiritual diseases. He does not
care to get forward with his business. Slothful professors turn
thus. The world and the Flesh are hinges On which they are hung;
and though they move in a course of outward services, yet they
are not the nearer to Heaven. 15. The sluggard is now out of
his Bed, but he might have lain there, for any thing he is
likely to bring to pass in his work. It is common for men who
will not do their duty, to pretend they cannot. Those that are
slothful in religion, will not be at the pains to feed their
souls with the Bread of Life, nor to fetch in promised blessings
By Prayer. 16. He that takes pains in religion, knows he is
working for a good Master, and that his labour shall not be in
vain. 17. To make ourselves busy in other men's matters, is to
thrust ourselves into Temptation. 18,19. He that sins in jest,
must repent in Earnest, or his Sin will be his ruin. 20-22.
Contention heats the Spirit, and puts families and societies
into a flame. And that Fire is commonly kindled and kept burning
By whisperers and backbiters. 23. A wicked Heart disguising
itself, is like a Potsherd covered with the Dross of Silver.

24-26. Always distrust when a Man speaks fair unless you know
him Well. Satan, in his temptations, speaks fair, as he did to
Eve; but it is Madness to give credit to him. 27. What pains
men take to do mischief to others! but it is digging a Pit, it
is rolling a Stone, hard work; and they prepare mischief to
themselves. 28. There are two sorts of lies equally
detestable. A slandering Lie, the mischief of this every body
sees. A flattering Lie, which secretly Works ruin. A Wise Man
will be more afraid of a flatterer than of a slanderer.