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My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger,
Surety — Rashly, without considering how thou shalt discharge the debt as occasion require. Otherwise suretyship in some cases may be not only lawful, but an act of justice and charity.
Stricken thy hand — Obliged thyself by giving thine hand, as the custom then was in such cases.
With — With the creditor, whom he calls a stranger, because the usurers in Israel, who lent money to others, upon condition of paying use for it, were either Heathens, or were reputed as bad as Heathens, because this practice was forbidden by God's law, Deuteronomy 23:19.
Do this now, my son, and deliver thyself, when thou art come into the hand of thy friend; go, humble thyself, and make sure thy friend.
Hand — Into the power.
Friend — Of the debtor, for whom, as being thy friend, thou didst become surety; whereby thou art in his power, by his neglect or unfaithfulness, to expose thee to the payment of the debt.
Make sure — Or, and prevail with thy friend, strive to win him by thine incessant and earnest solicitations.
Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids.
Give not sleep — Until thou hast taken care for the discharge of this obligation.
Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:
Go — This is a distinct precept; and it is for the most part as needless to seek, as hard to find, coherence in the proverbs.
So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man.
Travelleth — Swiftly and unexpectedly.
Armed man — Irresistibly.
These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:
Hate — Above many other sins which have a worse name in the world.
An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
Deviseth — He whose practice it is to contrive wickedness.
Swift — Such as greedily execute their wicked designs.
My son, keep thy father's commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
The law — The word of God, which thy parents delivered to thee.
Bind them continually upon thine heart, and tie them about thy neck.
Bind them — Constantly remember, and duly consider them.
When thou goest, it shall lead thee; when thou sleepest, it shall keep thee; and when thou awakest, it shall talk with thee.
It — The law of God which thy parents have taught thee.
Talk — It shall give thee counsel and comfort.
Lust not after her beauty in thine heart; neither let her take thee with her eyelids.
Eye-lids — With her wanton glances,
Men do not despise a thief, if he steal to satisfy his soul when he is hungry;
Despise — Abhor, but rather pity him.
But if he be found, he shall restore sevenfold; he shall give all the substance of his house.
Restore — He speaks not of that restitution which the law required, but of that which either the wronged person might force the thief to make, or which the thief would willingly give rather than be exposed to public shame.
For jealousy is the rage of a man: therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance.
Rage — It enflames a man with rage.
In the day — When he hath an opportunity to avenge himself.
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 6". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://studylight.org/
the Third Week after Epiphany