A A A A A
Bible Book List

Proverbs 28:13-15 New English Translation (NET Bible)

13 The one who covers[a] his transgressions will not prosper,[b]
but whoever confesses them and forsakes them will find mercy.[c]
14 Blessed is the one who is always cautious,[d]
but whoever hardens his heart[e] will fall into evil.
15 Like[f] a roaring lion or a roving bear,[g]
so is a wicked ruler over a poor people.[h]

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 28:13 tn The Hebrew participles provide the subject matter in this contrast. On the one hand is the person who covers over (מְכַסֶּה, mekhasseh) his sins. This means refusing to acknowledge them in confession, and perhaps rationalizing them away. On the other hand there is the one who both “confesses” (מוֹדֶה, modeh) and “forsakes” (עֹזֵב, ʿozev) the sin. To “confess” sins means to acknowledge them, to say the same thing about them that God does.
  2. Proverbs 28:13 sn The verse contrasts the consequences of each. The person who refuses to confess will not prosper. This is an understatement (a figure of speech known as tapeinosis); the opposite is the truth, that eventually such a person will be undone and ruined. On the other hand, the penitent will find mercy. This expression is a metonymy of cause for the effect—although “mercy” is mentioned, what mercy provides is intended, i.e., forgiveness. In other passages the verb “conceal” is used of God’s forgiveness—he covers over the iniquity (Ps 32:1). Whoever acknowledges sin, God will cover it; whoever covers it, God will lay it open.
  3. Proverbs 28:13 sn This verse is unique in the book of Proverbs; it captures the theology of forgiveness (e.g., Pss 32; 51). Every part of the passage is essential to the point: Confession of sins as opposed to concealing them, coupled with a turning away from them, results in mercy.
  4. Proverbs 28:14 tn Most commentators (and some English versions, e.g., NIV) assume that the participle מְפַחֵד (mefakhed, “fears”) means “fears the Lord,” even though “the Lord” is not present in the text. Such an assumption would be more convincing if the word יִרְאַת (yirʾat) had been used. It is possible that the verse refers to fearing sin or its consequences. In other words, the one who is always apprehensive about the nature and consequences of sin will avoid sin and find God’s blessing. Of course the assumption that the phrase means “fear the Lord” could be correct as well. There would be little difference in the outcome; in either case sin would be avoided.
  5. Proverbs 28:14 sn The one who “hardens his heart” in this context is the person who refuses to fear sin and its consequences. The image of the “hard heart” is one of a stubborn will, unyielding and unbending (cf. NCV, TEV, NLT). This individual will fall into sin.
  6. Proverbs 28:15 tn The term “like” is not in the Hebrew text, but is supplied in the translation for clarity and smoothness.
  7. Proverbs 28:15 sn The comparison uses animals that are powerful, terrifying, insensitive, and in search of prey. Because political tyrants are like this, animal imagery of this sort is also used in Dan 7:1-8 for the series of ruthless world powers.
  8. Proverbs 28:15 sn A poor nation under the control of political tyrants who are dangerous and destructive is helpless. The people of that nation will crumble under them because they cannot meet their demands and are of no use to them.
New English Translation (NET)

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

  Back

1 of 1

You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more

Viewing of
Cross references
Footnotes