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Proverbs 30:32-33 New English Translation (NET Bible)

32 If you have done foolishly by exalting yourself[a]
or if you have planned evil,
put[b] your hand over your mouth!
33 For as the churning[c] of milk produces butter
and as punching the nose produces blood,
so stirring up anger[d] produces strife.[e]


  1. Proverbs 30:32 tn The construction has the ב (bet) preposition with the Hitpael infinitive construct, forming a temporal clause. This clause explains the way in which the person has acted foolishly.
  2. Proverbs 30:32 tn Heb “hand to mouth.” This expression means “put your hand to your mouth” (e.g., Job 40:4, 5); cf. NIV “clap your hand over.”
  3. Proverbs 30:33 tn This line provides the explanation for the instruction to keep silent in the previous verse. It uses two images to make the point, and in so doing repeats two words throughout. The first is the word מִיץ (mits), which is translated (in sequence) “churning,” “punching,” and “stirring up.” The form is a noun, and BDB 568 s.v. suggests translating it as “squeezing” in all three places, even in the last where it describes the pressure or the insistence on strife. This noun occurs only here. The second repeated word, the verb יוֹצִיא (yotsiʾ), also occurs three times; it is the Hiphil imperfect, meaning “produces” (i.e., causes to go out).
  4. Proverbs 30:33 sn There is a subtle wordplay here with the word for anger: It is related to the word for nose in the preceding colon.
  5. Proverbs 30:33 sn The analogy indicates that continuously pressing certain things will yield results, some good, some bad. So pressing anger produces strife. The proverb advises people to strive for peace and harmony through humility and righteousness. To do that will require “letting up” on anger.
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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