6:16–19 These verses are the first of the numerical sayings in Proverbs (cf. 30:15–31). The form of these sayings suggests a kind of riddle with an answer provided, not to dispose of the question, but to invite further appropriate answers. Wisdom literature often lists things together that are perceived to have something in common. Relationships are established in surprising ways, and the process of discerning orderly relationships in the universe increases wisdom. This unit is quite distinct from the previous one (vv. 12–15), but is probably placed next to it for development of the theme. Whereas v. 15 expresses the perspective of an unspecified natural retribution, this saying implies that the Lord renders judgment (5:21–23 note).
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