The tongue of the righteous is choice silver, but the heart of the wicked is of little value.
The tongue of the righteous is as choice silver, The heart of the wicked is worth little.
The words of the godly are like sterling silver; the heart of a fool is worthless.
The speech of a good person is worth waiting for; the blabber of the wicked is worthless.
The tongue of the upright man is like tested silver: the heart of the evil-doer is of little value.
The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; the mind of the wicked is of little worth.
The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; The heart of the wicked is worth little.
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|NET © Notes||
1 tn Heb “the lips of the righteous.” The term “lips” functions as a metonymy of cause for speech. This contrasts the tongue (metonymy of cause for what they say) with the heart (metonymy of subject for what they intend). What the righteous say is more valuable than what the wicked intend.
2 tn The comparative “like” is not in the Hebrew text but is implied by the metaphor; it is supplied in the translation for the sake of clarity.
3 tn Or “pure”; Heb “choice.”
4 tn Heb “the heart of the wicked” (so KJV, NAB, NIV). The term “heart” functions as a metonymy of cause for thoughts. The term לֵב (lev, “heart”) often refers to the seat of thoughts, will and emotions (BDB 524 s.v. 3-4).
5 tn Heb “like little.” This expression refers to what has little value: “little worth” (so KJV, NAB, NRSV; cf. BDB 590 s.v. מְעַט 2.d). The point of the metaphor is clarified by the parallelism: Silver is valuable; the heart of the wicked is worth little. Tg. Prov 10:20 says it was full of dross, a contrast with choice silver.