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Proverbs 30:5  (King James Version)
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<< Proverbs 30:4   Proverbs 30:6 >>


Proverbs 30:5

The word translated as "pure" is actually more closely related to the word "refined." "Pure" is not wrong, but refined means "reduced to a pure state." Every word of God has been reduced to a pure state.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Revelation 2-3 and Works



Proverbs 30:4-6

Verse 5 appears in context with the questions in verse 4. The questioner asks, in effect, "Is anything better than the Word of God? Has any man ascended to heaven? Who is this person? To whom can I turn to receive instruction better than the Word of God?"

Verse 6 warns the reader not to delve into dangerous speculations and then take it another step farther by adding it to God's Word. Nor should one give it authority equivalent to the Word of God, as if the person speaking such things has been to heaven and returned to earth. Doing so is adding to the Word of God.

This prohibition is a well-established principle that first appears in Deuteronomy 4. In this context, "the word" means the commandments of God that appear in Deuteronomy 5:

You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you. . . . Therefore be careful to observe them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples who will hear all these statutes, and say, "Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people." (Deuteronomy 4:2, 6)

Notice also what David says in Psalm 18:30-31:

As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the LORD is proven; He is a shield [or, defender] to all who trust in Him. For who is God, except the LORD? And who is a rock, except our God?

Who can we depend on? We can depend on the Word of God to deliver us, to provide the right guidance, to give us the truth regarding everything we might face in life.

Connecting these thoughts to Proverbs 30:4-6, we find that the way of God is not improved by alloying it with human philosophy and speculations. Blending God's instruction with such things has always been a major problem. Within the framework of a covenant, this idea makes its first vivid appearance in Exodus 32, in the incident of the Golden Calf, and it continues to the end of the Bible.

Philosophies are the conclusions of men garnered through human experience and reason. So far, so good—because God requires us to use our reasoning powers in relation to His Word. So, we must gather evidence from His Word, use our reasoning powers, and then apply our conclusions to our individual situations.

However, human philosophies frequently begin with faulty premises or introduce evidence that does not agree with biblical truth. The conclusions drawn are thus wrong—and sometimes downright evil—because the wrong premise or the faulty evidence skewed the conclusion.

John W. Ritenbaugh
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part Twenty-Two)



Proverbs 30:1-6

Agur claims no great intelligence or superior understanding. He feels his education is lacking in the more important areas of life, like the proper way to live and the knowledge of God. He is only a common man with no special abilities, powers or privileges—in fact, he would like to know the person who could do some of these things.

In verses 5 and 6 he states his conclusion: To get the most and the best from life, we should believe God, not presuming that we can comprehend the effects of our actions without advice from God in His Word. God's Word cannot be improved upon; every word of God is pure, as gold and silver are pure (Psalm 12:6). The value of God's Word cannot be increased by adding to or taking from it, anymore than gold can be increased in value by alloying it with something else. He advises that we strive to do nothing that God forbids and leave nothing undone that God commands. This is the approach of a man whose sole aim is to please God, and who does not want to do or not do anything that might strain the relationship.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Christmas, Syncretism, and Presumption



Proverbs 30:5-6

The word "pure" might be better translated "refined." Its background is putting something to the test and it works. The advice has been refined; it is as pure as it can be. Then he adds, "Don't add to it, and it will be a shield to you."

Why will it protect us?

As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the LORD is proven [similar to refined, tested, pure]; He is a shield to all who trust in Him. (Psalm 18:30)

Protection from what? We need protection from all of the things that bondage and sin imply. If we lack the refined, pure, unadulterated Word of God, the only alternative is the word of men! Nowhere in God's Word does He says the word of men is pure, true, or refined. The word of men is limited to the experiences of men and by their prejudices. Even though a man may try, with all sincerity, to report something as honestly and accurately as he can, he does not have the breadth of experience or the unprejudiced mind of God.

If we trust the words of men in place of the words of God, we will not be protected from bondage. We will slide back into it.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Freedom and Unleavened Bread




Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing Proverbs 30:5:

Proverbs 30:4-6

 

<< Proverbs 30:4   Proverbs 30:6 >>



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