“Do not disobey the fear of the Lord!
Do not approach him with a divided mind!
Do not be a hypocrite before others!
Keep watch over your lips!
Do not exalt yourself!
Otherwise you may fall.
You may bring dishonor upon yourself.
The Lord will reveal your secrets.
He will overthrow you
Before the whole congregation.
You did not come
In the fear of the Lord.
Your heart was full of deceit.”
Now we have a series of reprimands. You were not to disobey the fear of the Lord. You should not have a divided mind. You should not be hypocrites. You should watch your lips. You should not exalt yourself. If you fall, you bring dishonor to yourself. The Lord would reveal your secrets. He would overthrow you before the whole congregation. If your heart is deceitful, you did not come with the fear of the Lord.
“Like the glaze covering an earthen vessel
Are smooth lips with an evil heart.
An enemy dissembles in speaking,
While harboring deceit within.
When an enemy speaks graciously,
Do not believe it.
There are seven abominations concealed within.
Their hatred is covered with guile.
Their wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.
Whoever digs a pit
Will fall into it.
A stone will come back
On the one who starts it rolling.
A lying tongue hates its victims.
A flattering mouth works ruin.”
Watch your lips and the smooth lips of your enemies. Watch what they say. Smooth lips with an evil heart are the glaze that makes a glossy vessel shiny. Watch out for the enemy who has deceit in his heart while speaking to you. When an enemy speaks graciously, do not believe them since they are concealing 7 abominations. They cover their hatred with guile, but it will be exposed in the assembly. Whoever starts to dig a pit, will fall into it. If you start to roll a stone, it will come back on you. Lying tongues hate their victims. Flattery will only bring you to ruin.
“The words of the wise
Incline your ear!
Hear my words!
Apply your mind to my teaching.
It will be pleasant,
If you keep them within you.
It will be pleasant,
If all of them are ready on your lips.
Your trust may be in Yahweh.
I have made them known to you today,
Now we suddenly switch backs to the words of the wise, rather than the Proverbs of Solomon. Who then is this wise one or wise ones? Some have speculated that these were the wise friends of Solomon. However, the style is reminiscent of the first few chapters in the prologue. The request is that you incline your ears and hear his words. The use of the singular might mean one individual. Quite frankly, we have to say that we do not know who this wise man is. However, you are asked to apply your mind to his teaching. This will go well, that is pleasant, if you keep his words within you, ready on your lips. Basically you must trust Yahweh. The wise man has made it known to you, explicitly you, today. So listen up!