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Proverbs 21:16

Context

21:16 The one who wanders 1  from the way of wisdom 2 

will end up 3  in the company of the departed. 4 

1 tn The text uses “man” as the subject and the active participle תּוֹעֶה (toeh) as the predicate. The image of “wandering off the path” signifies leaving a life of knowledge, prudence, and discipline.

2 tn Or “prudence”; KJV, NASB, NIV, NRSV “understanding”; NLT “common sense.”

3 tn Heb “will remain” or “will rest.” The Hebrew word נוּחַ (nuakh) does not here carry any of the connotations of comforting repose in death that the righteous enjoy; it simply means “to remain; to reside; to dwell.” The choice of this verb might have an ironic twist to it, reminding the wicked what might have been.

4 sn The departed are the Shades (the Rephaim). The literal expression “will rest among the Shades” means “will be numbered among the dead.” So once again physical death is presented as the punishment for folly.



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