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1. Following up
3. by the way--in his ordinary course; in his simplest acts (Pr 6:12-14). That he "saith," virtually, "that he" himself, &c. [Septuagint]. But Vulgate, "He thinks that every one (else whom he meets) is a fool."
5. as--rather, "by reason of an error" [MAURER and HOLDEN].
6. rich--not in mere wealth, but in wisdom, as the antithesis to "folly" (for "foolish men") shows. So Hebrew, rich, equivalent to "liberal," in a good sense (Isa 32:5). Mordecai and Haman (Es 3:1, 2; 6:6-11).
8. The fatal results to kings of such an unwise policy; the wrong done to others recoils on themselves (Ec 8:9); they fall into the pit which they dug for others (Es 7:10; Ps 7:15; Pr 26:27). Breaking through the wise fences of their throne, they suffer unexpectedly themselves; as when one is stung by a serpent lurking in the stones of his neighbor's garden wall (Ps 80:12), which he maliciously pulls down (Am 5:19).
9. removeth stones--namely, of an ancient building
neighbor's landmarks [HOLDEN].
Cuts out from the quarry [MAURER].
10. iron . . . blunt--in "cleaving wood"
answering to the "fool set in dignity"
who wants sharpness. More force has then to be used in both cases; but
"force" without judgment "endangers" one's self. Translate, "If one
hath blunted his iron" [MAURER]. The preference
of rash to judicious counsellors, which entailed the pushing of matters
by force, proved to be the "hurt" of Rehoboam
11. A "serpent will bite" if "enchantment" is not used; "and a babbling calumniator is no better." Therefore, as one may escape a serpent by charms (Ps 58:4, 5), so one may escape the sting of a calumniator by discretion (Ec 10:12), [HOLDEN]. Thus, "without enchantment" answers to "not whet the edge" (Ec 10:10), both expressing, figuratively, want of judgment. MAURER translates, "There is no gain to the enchanter" (Margin, "master of the tongue") from his enchantments, because the serpent bites before he can use them; hence the need of continual caution. Ec 10:8-10, caution in acting; Ec 10:11 and following verses, caution in speaking.
14. full of words--
15. labour . . . wearieth--
16. a child--given to pleasures; behaves with childish levity. Not
in years; for a nation may be happy under a young prince, as Josiah.
17. son of nobles--not merely in blood, but in virtue, the true
Isa 32:5, 8).
18. building--literally, "the joining of the rafters," namely, the
19. Referring to Ec 10:18. Instead of repairing the breaches in the commonwealth (equivalent to "building"), the princes "make a feast for laughter (Ec 10:16), and wine maketh their life glad (Ps 104:15), and (but) money supplieth (answereth their wishes by supplying) all things," that is, they take bribes to support their extravagance; and hence arise the wrongs that are perpetrated (Ec 10:5, 6; 3:16; Isa 1:23; 5:23). MAURER takes "all things" of the wrongs to which princes are instigated by "money"; for example, the heavy taxes, which were the occasion of Rehoboam losing ten tribes (1Ki 12:4, &c.).
20. thought--literally, "consciousness."