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The word for Proverb is taken from 'mashal' which is the Hebrew word 'to rule'. A proverb is a doctrine which rules and governs the life of a believer.

The book of Proverbs was written for teenagers - to teach them doctrine through a proverb (poetry of two lines). Proverbs is the collection of Solomon's teaching from David to him and then from him to his son Rehoboam. RBT also teaches that Solomon also used two pseudo-names in Proverbs - Agur and King Lemuel.

In Proverbs Chapter 1:7-19, Proverbs Chapter 19:20-24, and in Proverbs Chapter 27-29, we have three sections in which David actually taught Solomon. Solomon wrote them down and kept them. We have Solomon's notes from his father's teaching. In other words, David taught doctrine to Solomon. And those sections are designed for teenagers, and the key in each case is, 'My son.'

Proverbs Chapter 1:10 through Chapter 19:19 Solomon probably wrote himself.

And, in Chapter 30 we have Agur's wisdom, and Agur is probably a pseudonym for Solomon, or else he was an actual king who taught Solomon. Then in Proverbs 31 we have two King Lemuels' wisdom, and Lemuel was either a friend of Solomon who taught Solomon or another pseudonym for Solomon.

Next, there are three thrusts in the Book of Proverbs:

1. Divine Good (production under the energy of the Spirit) versus Human Good (production under the energy of the flesh).

2. Man shall not live by bread alone. As the human body needs food, it is God's command that a believer's spirit 'lives' by the Bread and Water of the Word. This means that in your list of priorities in life, God and His Word must be first in your life or you will not have the capacity to truly enjoy the 'details of life'. With doctrine, you can lose the details and still have inner happiness. Without doctrine, you can have all the details of life and still be frustrated and miserable and eaten up with mental attitude sins - no capacity for love, friendship, wealth, etc.

3. The last issue of Proverbs is that the mental attitude sins are the WORST sins. They all manufacture self-induced misery! Arrogance, jealousy, envy, strife, anger, bitterness, implacability, judging, self-righteousness, are the worst and hurt YOURSELF the most! And, when you act on these sins - to slander, gossip, interfere (doctrine of the long nose), revolt against legitimate authority, murder (they had it coming), steal (if I were not so poor I would not have to), etc. - all these sins started with a mental attitude sin.

Finally, The book of Proverbs is 'chakmah literature' or 'wisdom literature' (along with three other books - Job, Psalms, and Ecclesiastes). And, Proverbs is 'structured poetry'. In it are groupings of lines. The first grouping is called a 'distich'.

A distich is two lines of poetry.

There are 6 basic types of distiches in Proverbs (Yea . . . even a 7th):

 1. A 'Synthetic Distich' is a distich where both lines have Truth or Doctrine and the two lines have something in common. Yet they are not Antithetical or Synonymous.

 2. An 'Antithetical Distich' is a distich where the first line of poetry is opposite from the second line of poetry.

 3. A 'Synonymous Distich' is two lines of Jewish poetry that say the same thing - only using different words.

 4. An 'Integral Distich' is a distich where the second line completes the thought of the first line.

 5. A 'Parabolic Distich' (a one phrase parabole) is a distich where the first line illustrates the second line - usually starting with 'as' or vice versa.

 6. A 'Comparative Distich' is a distich where the first line expresses something better than what you have in the second line.

 7. A 'Reciprocal Distich' is one with the first line stated and then the situation is reversed in the second line.

RBT also found a Tristich - a three line proverb. There are only a few - Proverbs 24:27; 25:13. The first line is the illustration and that is amplified by the next lines.

Next, we also have 4 line proverbs called a Tetrastich with similar structures above (for example: the first two lines can be synonymous with the second two lines).

And we have 6 line proverbs. In a 'Six -line proverb', the first two lines form the subject and the next four lines amplify the subject.

And we have a Pentastich. In a Pentastich the last three lines give the reason for the first two lines - five lines in total - subject in first two lines with amplification in last three lines.

And we have a 'Heptastich'. A 7 line proverb. The first two lines are expanded by the next five lines.

Finally, we have the 'Octastich'. There is only one - Proverbs 6:16-19. You have two lines and then it is amplified by the next lines.

Chapter 1
{Chapters 1-24: Primarily for Teenagers}

1~~ Proverbs {mashal} of Solomon, Son of David, King of Israel.

{Note: The book of proverbs is Solomon's collection of sayings. They are not all his original sayings. Solomon was the second son of David by Bathsheba (the first child of David's rape of Bathsheba died). Mashal means to rule or govern. A proverb is a rule by which you should run your life.}

{Verses 2-7: Purpose}
2a~~To know {yada`}
wisdom {chokmah}
and doctrine/instruction {muwcar}.

{Note: chokmah - 'means to have it pounded in' - the way you teach children to have manners - repetition of the same principal - inculcation. And, muwcar - 'to train by discipline' - to teach under authority will teach the principal of respect for authority - that child will respect authority for life - if this is not taught the child will not respect others, their property, their rights - a bad start in life}

2b~~To teach/'cause to perceive' {biyn}
the vocabulary {'emer}
of doctrine {biynah}.

{Note: Biyn - Hiphil stem - means 'to get the information metabolized into your mentality'. It is the transfer of knowledge from the book (where it does you no good) to where it can be used when needed. And biynah - 'doctrine in the right lobe' - is the noun form of biyn above.}

3~~To receive {laqach}
the 'doctrinal instruction of wisdom' {muwcar sakal}
  {3 Circumstances of Application follow:}
righteousness/justice {tsedeq}
'divine institutions'/judgment {mishpat}
'but always with integrity'/'and equity' {meyshar}.

{Note: Laqach means 'to get and clearly pass on in a manner in which it can be understood'. Muwcar sakal means 'bible doctrine in the frontal lobe applied to experience' - wisdom from doctrine. Tsedeq is referring to your general motus operandi in life. And, mishpat is referring to the 4 divine institutions and how they operate. Finally, meyshar means personal integrity. It is the same as 'your Word should be your Bond'.}

4a~~To give 'silly ones'/'the stupid' {reversionists} . . .
sagacity/'something of value'.

{Note: Some children are more teachable than others - you may have to go over some things in different ways and over it and over it again - but doctrine will give even the simplest of Children something of value.}

{Now for the Teenager}
4b~~To give young man {na`ar}
knowledge {of doctrine} {da`ath}
and discretion/'common sense wisdom'/concentration.

{Note: m@zimmah means focusing your thinking on 'something of value'.}

5a~~A wise one {chakam}
will 'hear, listen, and obey' {shama`}
and increase doctrine {leqach}.

{Note: Chakam - a person motivated to concentrate and learn doctrine.}

5b~~And the one receiving understanding {of doctrine} {biyn}
will 'acquire common sense for leadership'/
'have principals on which to be successful'.
  {idiom: literally: 'will attain unto wise counsel'}

6~~To understand a proverb and its interpretation . . .
the words/'doctrinal communications' {dabar} of the wise teachers
and their 'spiritual discourses'/enigma's/'advanced doctrines'.

{Verses 7-9: Respect for Authority}
{Verse 7: Respect the Authority of Bible Doctrine}
7a~~Respect {yir'ah} for Jehovah/God
is the beginning of the knowledge {of doctrine}.

{Note: Yir'ah - literally means 'awe' - and the phrase comes to mean 'Occupation with Christ'.}

7b~~But 'stupid ones'/fools {'eviyl}
despise {buwz} both 'application of doctrine' {chokmah}
and 'training under discipline' {muwcar}.

{Note: 'Eviyl is a word stronger than 'fool'. It refers here to anyone who has any detail of life set up as more important than God and His Word in their scale of values. And Buwz means to put your foot on something and kick it - this can be mentally or physically. Finally, chokmah is 'wisdom' or 'application of doctrine'.}

{Verses 8-9: A 'Synonymous Distich' (David taught Solomon . . . here recorded by Solomon)}
{Verse 8-9: Respect the Authority of Parents}
8a~~Hear, listen and obey {shama`}
my son, the 'teachings under discipline' {muwcar - plural}
of your father {David}.

{Note: Shama` means to concentrate under strict authority - to hear, listen, concentrate, and obey. Parents should teach doctrine to their children and children should listen!}

8b~~And do not forsake the 'doctrinal instructions'/law {towrah}
of your mother {Bathsheba}.

{Note: Towrah means again teaching of doctrine. This time referring to 'the Law' (Deuteronomy 6:4-9) which explained to the parents how to teach doctrine.}

9a~~Because these/they
  {doctrines resident in the soul that were taught by your parents}
are a 'wreath/crown of grace' {livyah chen}
around your head.

{Note: RBT says this part refers to the male - and is an idiom for a 'successful adult'.}

9b~~And a 'neck-chain {of honor}' {`anaq}
suspended from the throat.

{Note: RBT says this part refers to the female - and is another idiom for a 'successful female adult'.}

{Verses 10-19: Enticement of the Wrong Crowd and How it can Destroy a Nation}
10~~ My son {David to Solomon},
if sinners { chatta'}
'entice you under pressure'/'seek to seduce you' {pathah} . . .
do not be willing.

{Note: Chatta' here is in the intensive form. It is referring to a crowd who makes a habit of sinning. And pathah here is also in the Piel intensive stem. Here using peer pressure to join them so you are not a 'square' - be a regular guy - or to call you a coward - taunting that 'you are afraid to break the law with them' type thing.}

{Verses 11-19: Activities of the Wrong Crowd Mentioned}
11~~If they shall say,
"Go along with us,
let us 'use violence' . . .
let us 'ambush the innocent without a reason'.

{Note: 'Use violence' is an idiom. It is literally 'lay wait for blood'. This is all the 'we are a tough gang argument' - 'join us to beat up people' - mob violence.}

{More Violence}
12~~Let us 'beat them up so badly
it is like they are dead though still alive'
and like healthy ones that go 'to prison'/'down into the pit'.

{Note: To beat them up badly is another idiom: literally 'swallow them up alive as the grave'. And the verse means they intend to brutalize anyone in their vicinity}

{Now More Lawlessness - Robbery}
13~~ We shall acquire all kinds of precious wealth,
we shall fill our houses with plunder/spoil {something robbed}.

{More Anti-'God's Laws for Establishment' - Socialism of these Criminals}
14~~Throw in your lot with us, one purse shall be for all of us."

{Verses 15-16:David's Warning Against Joining Them}
15~~My son,
do not Walk in the Way with them,
withdraw your foot from their path.

{Note: This warns NOT to have a pattern of life similar to theirs - stay away from them and their ways.}

16~~For their feet hurry to evil,
and they rush impetuously to shed blood.

17~~For the net is spread out in vain
in the eyes of all 'Large Birds of Prey' { ba`al kanaph}.

{Note: This is an idiom: for eagles, hawks, vultures - literally 'Lords of the Wings' - the analogy is of trying to set a trap to catch one of the big birds - the wrong crowd will try to trap teenagers by offering 'grain' (success, power, money) - and the net is set in vain if the smart bird sees the trap and avoids it.}

{Verses 18-19: Wrong Crowd Destroys itself}
18a~~But they ambush their own blood.
  {those who live by lawless violence, die by lawless violence}

18b~~They lay snares for their own lives {self-induced misery}.
  {they are the ones secretly trying to hurt or steal - but it is them
  who will be hurt and taken into custody}

19~~So are the Ways of every one that is greedy for gain
which takes away the life of the owners thereof.
  {you get into the wrong crowd, you destroy yourself - maybe early
  death or, as likely, the destruction of a chance for a good
  productive life under God's laws}

{Note: Greedy people often lose their lives in their frantic search for money.}