King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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Proverbs 2

Promises to those who seek wisdom. (1-9) The advantages of wisdom. (10-22)

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Promises to those who seek wisdom

1 My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee;

2 So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding;

3 Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding;

4 If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures;

5 Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God.

6 For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.

7 He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: he is a buckler to them that walk uprightly.

8 He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of his saints.

9 Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path.

The advantages of wisdom

10 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;

11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee:

12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things;

13 Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness;

14 Who rejoice to do evil, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked;

15 Whose ways are crooked, and they froward in their paths:

16 To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words;

17 Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God.

18 For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead.

19 None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life.

20 That thou mayest walk in the way of good men, and keep the paths of the righteous.

21 For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it.

22 But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. If. This proves free will. To become truly wise, we must desire it with the same avidity as a miser seeks for riches. W. — We must also pray, (v. 3.) with humility (v. 2.) to God, the giver of wisdom. v. 6. Every science which has not Him for the beginning and end, is vain and dangerous. C.

Ver. 7. Salvation. Prot. “sound wisdom.” Tushiya (H.) often occurs in this book, and is very comprehensive, (C.) denoting the substance (H.) of goodness, virtue, &c. Job v. 12.

Ver. 8. Justice. In his servants. C. — God gives them grace to follow virtue, (H.) and protects them from every danger. C.

Ver. 12. Things. The danger of such company for young people is very great, as the heart is misled by the understanding, (C.) if it do not itself shew the way to error. H. — We all possess a fund of corruption. C.

Ver. 14. Evil. These signs prove whom we ought to shun. S. Aug. depicts his own conduct before his conversion in the darkest colours. C.

Ver. 16. Strange. Idolatress, (Grot.) or rather the abandoned woman, whether married or not. C. — This description, as well as the former, guards us against heretics, who leave the right way of the Catholic Church, (v. 13.) and devise perverse doctrines of rebellion against princes, &c. as if faith alone were sufficient. By this faith, Prot. do not mean any article which all must believe, but only that each one must be convinced that he himself is just, and will be saved. Like the strange woman, they preach a comfortable doctrine, and use sweet speeches. Rom. xvi. 18. Their conversion is a very difficult matter, (v. 19.) because they are condemned by their own judgment, (Tit. iii. 11.) and will not admit of the ordinary means of instruction in the Church. W.

Ver. 17. Youth. Her husband, whom she married young when love is more lasting. This increases her guilt. It may also signify her father, or preceptor.

Ver. 18. God. The law forbids adultery, and all impurities. Deut. xxiii. 17. Lev. xx. 10. Both the parties, guilty of adultery, were punished with death. C.

Ver. 19. Life. A sincere conversion is so rare among people once addicted to impurity, (H.) which resembles a deep pit. C. — This illness is hardly removed. M.

Ver. 21. Earth. Happily. This was the wish of the carnal Jews. But the more enlightened raise their thoughts to heaven.