Internet Verse Search Commentaries Word Analysis ITL - draft

Proverbs 17:8

Context
NETBible

A bribe works like 1  a charm 2  for the one who offers it; 3  in whatever he does 4  he succeeds. 5 

XREF

Ge 33:9-11; Ge 43:11; Ex 23:8; De 16:19; 1Sa 25:35; 2Sa 16:1-4; Ps 18:16; Ps 19:6; Ps 21:13; Ps 29:4; Pr 17:23; Mic 7:3

NET © Notes

tn The phrase “works like” does not appear in the Hebrew text, but is implied by the metaphor; it is supplied for the sake of clarity.

tn Heb “a stone of favors”; NAB, NRSV “a magic stone.” The term שֹׁחַד (shokhad, “bribe”) could be simply translated as “a gift”; but the second half of the verse says that the one who offers it is successful. At best it could be a gift that opens doors; at worst it is a bribe. The word שֹׁחַד is never used of a disinterested gift, so there is always something of the bribe in it (e.g., Ps 15:5; Isa 1:23). Here it is “a stone that brings favor,” the genitive being the effect or the result of the gift. In other words, it has magical properties and “works like a charm.”

tn Heb “in the eyes of its owner.”

tn Heb “in all that he turns”; NASB, NIV “wherever he turns.”

sn As C. H. Toy points out, the sage is merely affirming a point without making a comment – those who use bribery meet with widespread success (Proverbs [ICC], 341). This does not amount to an endorsement of bribery.



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