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Proverbs 20:10-12 New English Translation (NET Bible)

10 Diverse weights and diverse measures[a]
the Lord abhors[b] both of them.
11 Even a young man[c] is known[d] by his actions,
whether his activity is pure and whether it is right.[e]
12 The ear that hears and the eye that sees[f]
the Lord has made them both.[g]


  1. Proverbs 20:10 tn The construction simply uses repetition to express different kinds of weights and measures: “a stone and a stone, an ephah and an ephah.”
  2. Proverbs 20:10 tn Heb “an abomination of the Lord.” The phrase features a subjective genitive: “the Lord abhors.” sn Behind this proverb is the image of the dishonest merchant who has different sets of weights and measures which are used to cheat customers. The Lord hates dishonesty in business transactions.
  3. Proverbs 20:11 sn In the first nine chapters of the book of Proverbs the Hebrew term נַעַר (naʿar) referred to an adolescent, a young person whose character was being formed in his early life.
  4. Proverbs 20:11 sn The Hebrew verb נָכַר (nakhar) means “to recognize” more than simply “to know.” Certain character traits can be recognized in a child by what he does (cf. NCV “by their behavior”).
  5. Proverbs 20:11 sn Character is demonstrated by actions at any age. But the emphasis of the book of Proverbs would also be that if the young child begins to show such actions, then the parents must try to foster and cultivate them; if not, they must try to develop them through teaching and discipline.
  6. Proverbs 20:12 sn The first half of the verse refers to two basic senses that the Lord has given to people. C. H. Toy, however, thinks that they represent all the faculties (Proverbs [ICC], 388). But in the book of Proverbs seeing and hearing come to the fore. By usage, “hearing” also means obeying (15:31; 25:12), and “seeing” also means perceiving and understanding (Isa 6:9-10).
  7. Proverbs 20:12 sn The verse not only credits God with making these faculties of hearing and sight and giving them to people, but it also emphasizes their spiritual use in God’s service.
New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2017 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.


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