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Proverbs 16:15


16:15 In the light of the king’s face 1  there is life,

and his favor is like the clouds 2  of the spring rain. 3 

Proverbs 19:12


19:12 A king’s wrath is like 4  the roar of a lion, 5 

but his favor is like dew on the grass. 6 

Job 14:9


14:9 at the scent 7  of water it will flourish 8 

and put forth 9  shoots like a new plant.

1 tn Heb “the light of the face of the king.” This expression is a way of describing the king’s brightened face, his delight in what is taking place. This would mean life for those around him.

sn The proverb is the antithesis of 16:14.

2 tn Heb “cloud.”

3 tn Heb “latter rain” (so KJV, ASV). The favor that this expression represents is now compared to the cloud of rain that comes with the “latter” rain or harvest rain. The point is that the rain cloud was necessary for the successful harvest; likewise the king’s pleasure will ensure the success and the productivity of the people under him. E.g., also Psalm 72:15-17; the prosperity of the land is portrayed as a blessing on account of the ideal king.

4 sn The verse contrasts the “rage” of the king with his “favor” by using two similes. The first simile presents the king at his most dangerous – his anger (e.g., 20:2; Amos 3:4). The second simile presents his favor as beneficial for life (e.g., 16:14-15; 28:15).

5 tn Heb “is a roaring like a lion.”

6 sn The proverb makes an observation about a king’s power to terrify or to refresh. It advises people to use tact with a king.

7 tn The personification adds to the comparison with people – the tree is credited with the sense of smell to detect the water.

8 tn The sense of “flourish” for this verb is found in Ps 92:12,13[13,14], and Prov 14:11. It makes an appropriate parallel with “bring forth boughs” in the second half.

9 tn Heb “and will make.”

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