and the father of a fool has no joy. 4
whoever fathers a wise child 6 will have joy in him.
23:25 May your father and your mother have joy;
may she who bore you rejoice. 7
1 sn Here the Hebrew terms כְּסִיל (kÿsil) and נָבָל (naval) are paired. The first one, which occurs about fifty times in the book, refers to a dullard, whether it be in spiritual, intellectual, or moral matters. The second word, rare in the book, primarily focuses on religious folly – it refers to the practical atheist, the one who lives as if there is no God.
2 tn The form simply means “bears” or “gives birth to,” but since it is masculine it could be rendered “fathers” (cf. NASB “he who begets a fool”; NIV “To have a fool for a son”). The form for “fool” is masculine, but the proverb is not limited only to male children (cf. NCV “It is sad to have a foolish child”).
3 tn The phrase “does so” is supplied for the sake of clarification.
4 sn Parents of fools, who had hoped for children who would be a credit to the family, find only bitter disappointment (cf. TEV “nothing but sadness and sorrow”).
5 tc The Qere reading has the imperfect יָגִיל (yagil) with the cognate accusative גִּיל (gil) which intensifies the meaning and the specific future of this verb.
6 tn The term “child” is supplied for the masculine singular adjective here.
7 tn The form תָגֵל (tagel) is clearly a short form and therefore a jussive (“may she…rejoice”); if this second verb is a jussive, then the parallel יִשְׂמַח (yismakh) should be a jussive also (“may your father and your mother have joy”).