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Proverbs 30:7-9 New English Translation (NET Bible)

Two things[a] I have asked from you;[b]
do not refuse me before I die:
Remove falsehood and lies[c] far from me;
do not give me poverty or riches,
feed me with my allotted portion[d] of bread,[e]
lest I become satisfied and act deceptively[f]
and say, “Who is the Lord?”
Or lest I become poor and steal
and demean[g] the name of my God.


  1. Proverbs 30:7 sn Wisdom literature often groups things in twos and fours, or in other numerical arrangements (e.g., Amos 1:3-2:6; Job 5:19; Prov 6:16-19).
  2. Proverbs 30:7 tn Assuming that the contents of vv. 7-9 are a prayer, several English versions have supplied a vocative phrase: “O Lord” (NIV); “O God” (NLT); others have supplied a similar phrase without the vocative “O”: NCV, CEV “Lord”; TEV “God.”
  3. Proverbs 30:8 tn The two words might form a hendiadys: “falsehood and lies” being equivalent to “complete deception.” The word שָׁוְא (shavʾ) means “false; empty; vain; to a false purpose.” The second word means “word of lying,” thus “a lying word.” Taken separately they might refer to false intentions and false words.
  4. Proverbs 30:8 tn The word חֹק (khoq) means “statute”; it is also used of a definite assignment in labor (Exod 5:14; Prov 31:15), or of a set portion of food (Gen 47:22). Here it refers to food that is the proper proportion for the speaker.
  5. Proverbs 30:8 sn Agur requested an honest life (not deceitful) and a balanced life (not self-sufficient). The second request about his provision is clarified in v. 9.
  6. Proverbs 30:9 tn The verb כָּחַשׁ (kakhash) means “to be disappointing; to deceive; to fail; to grow lean.” In the Piel stem it means “to deceive; to act deceptively; to cringe; to disappoint.” The idea of acting deceptively is illustrated in Hos 9:2 where it has the connotation of “disowning” or “refusing to acknowledge” (a meaning very close to its meaning here).
  7. Proverbs 30:9 tn The Hebrew verb literally means “to take hold of; to seize”; this produces the idea of doing violence to the reputation of God.
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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