Study Guide

Proverbs Chapter 27

Chapter 27

Taste Follows Appetite

  • More advice piles up: don't boast about what will happen tomorrow, because it could all be overthrown; don't praise yourself, let others do it; jealousy is worse than wrath or anger; and fool's provocations are harder to resist than a heavy stone or sand pressing down on you.
  • It's better to rebuke someone out of care for their wellbeing than to hide your love for them. True friends will try to steer you into doing the right thing with rebukes and reminders, whereas enemies will just flatter and kiss up to you.
  • If your appetite is already sated, you won't gorge yourself on honey, but if you're really hungry, even bitter things taste good.
  • Don't run away from home like a bird flying away from its nest.
  • Also, perfume and incense are good things: they cheer you up.
  • Don't forget your friends or your parents' friends—but at the same time, don't spread your personal calamities to your family and kindred.
  • It's better to turn to neighbors nearby than to go too far away kinfolk to seek for solutions.

More "Sticks and Carrots" 

  • Clever people know when to cut and run. The simple ones don't.
  • To repeat an earlier point, Proverbs says not to make loans or give surety to a stranger or a foreigner.
  • If you loudly (obnoxiously) bless a neighbor early in the morning, it'll feel like a curse rather than a blessing.
  • Proverbs continues, handing out sticks and carrots: contentious wives and fools get more sticks; people who sharpen one another's wits, tend fruit trees, and take care of their masters get carrots.
  • Human hearts reflect each other, like water reflects your face.
  • Human eyes are never satisfied in seeing enough, the same way Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied with taking in more souls.
  • Being praised tests what a person is really made of.
  • Keep a close watch on your herds and livestock and take care of them. Nothing lasts forever, but if you're attentive, you'll have enough for you and your household.

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