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Proverbs 16 – Skeptic's Annotated Bible answered

A response and reply to the notes on Proverbs 16 in the Skeptic's Annotated Bible (SAB).

King James Version

SAB comment

My comment

1 The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD.

2 All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits.

3 Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established.

4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

God made bad people for the pleasure of punishing them. Does God want some to go to hell?
John Gill observes on the phrase “yea, even the wicked for the day of evil”

This is added to illustrate the general proposition in the preceding clause, and to obviate an objection, that might be taken from the destruction of the wicked, against all things being for the glory of God; for even the destruction of the wicked, which is under a divine appointment, is for his glory. It is not the sense of this text, nor of any other passage of Scripture, that God made man to damn him; nor is this to be inferred from the doctrine of predestination: God made man, neither to damn him, nor to save him, but for his own glory; and that is secured, whether in his salvation or damnation; nor did or does God make men wicked; he made man upright, and he has made himself wicked; and, being so, God may justly appoint him to damnation for his wickedness, in doing which he glorifies his justice.

To paraphrase: every man, even those who have become wicked, were created by God. God made man so he would glorify him. But the wicked choose not to, but God is still their creator.

5 Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.

6 By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.

7 When a man’s ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.

If you are faithful to God, your enemies will be at peace with you. If so, then the author of 2 Tim.3:12 must have been mistaken.
If God likes you, will everyone else?
The author of the SAB translates “to be at peace” with “all will like you”. If that would have been the meaning Solomon would have said: “all your enemies will become your friends.” But he did not say that. Indeed, God can turn hearts, and former enemies can become friends, Gal. 1:13. So we should expect deliverance from our enemies from God. But it does not necessary mean our enemies are our friends when we live at peace with them.
The author of the SAB also translates this verse as if this always happen. But the condition is clear: when it pleases God. When it pleases God, our enemies are at peace. And when it pleases God, we suffer for the name of Christ, 2 Tim. 3:12.

8 Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues without right.

9 A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.

10 A divine sentence is in the lips of the king: his mouth transgresseth not in judgment.

11 A just weight and balance are the LORD’S: all the weights of the bag are his work.

12 It is an abomination to kings to commit wickedness: for the throne is established by righteousness.

13 Righteous lips are the delight of kings; and they love him that speaketh right.

14 The wrath of a king is as messengers of death: but a wise man will pacify it.

15 In the light of the king’s countenance is life; and his favour is as a cloud of the latter rain.

16 How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!

17 The highway of the upright is to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul.

18 Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.

"Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall."

19 Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.

20 He that handleth a matter wisely shall find good: and whoso trusteth in the LORD, happy is he.

21 The wise in heart shall be called prudent: and the sweetness of the lips increaseth learning.

(16:21-22) Some nice proverbs about wisdom.

22 Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him that hath it: but the instruction of fools is folly.

23 The heart of the wise teacheth his mouth, and addeth learning to his lips.

24 Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.

25 There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.

26 He that laboureth laboureth for himself; for his mouth craveth it of him.

27 An ungodly man diggeth up evil: and in his lips there is as a burning fire.

28 A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.

Don't gossip. Avoid saying hurtful things.

29 A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good.

30 He shutteth his eyes to devise froward things: moving his lips he bringeth evil to pass.

31 The hoary head is a crown of glory, if it be found in the way of righteousness.

"The hoary head [gray hair] is a crown of glory."
The hoary head is only a crown if. If it be found in the way of righteousness as Solomon continues.

32 He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.

"He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city."

33 The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD.

All games of chance (gambling) are controlled by God.
Solomon isn't talking about games of chance here, because the Israelites didn't cast the lot to play games. I'm not even aware of any example in the Bible were games of chance were played. This expression is used when God's divine intervention was sought in exceptional cases. For example the lot was cast to find a guilty person, 1 Sam. 14:42, or to select someone for the unique office of apostle, Acts 1:26.
It is unclear if our universe possesses true randomness, as testing if something is random can only be done with statistical means. But I would like to believe our universe possesses the property of true randomness as that is a very useful mathematical tool and makes encryption possible. But regardless if true randomness is possible or not, an almighty God can surely guide it.