Verse 4

Note, 1. The neglect of husbandry is the way to poverty: Where no oxen are, to till the ground and tread out the corn, the crib is empty, is clean; there is no straw for the cattle, and consequently no bread for the service of man. Scarcity is represented by cleanness of teeth, Amos 4:6. Where no oxen are there is nothing to be done at the ground, and then nothing to be had out of it; the crib indeed is clean from dung, which pleases the neat and nice, that cannot endure husbandry because there is so much dirty work in it, and therefore will sell their oxen to keep the crib clean; but then not only the labour, but even the dung of the ox is wanted. This shows the folly of those who addict themselves to the pleasures of the country, but do not mind the business of it, who (as we say) keep more horses than kine, more dogs than swine; their families must needs suffer by it. 2. Those who take pains about their ground are likely to reap the profit of it. Those who keep that about them which is for use and service, not for state and show, more husbandmen than footmen, are likely to thrive. Much increase is by the strength of the ox; that is made for our service, and is profitable alive and dead.