Proverbs 27:2

Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.

– Proverbs 27:2

Self-promotion is nauseating and obnoxious to others (Proverbs 25:27). It is similar to the presumptuous confidence above, only centered on exalting oneself. Wisdom offers at least two reasons we should refrain from self-praise. First, wisdom teaches to let another man and a stranger to give us any praise due to us. This points to a more objective evaluation than a self-evaluation. Second, wisdom teaches the ultimate objective evaluation comes from God (Proverbs 16:2; 21:2). Reference to thine own mouth and thine own lips in the negative shows self-praise an invalid use of our speech. Wisdom teaches at least four right uses of our speech: instructing in wisdom (Proverbs 13:14; 15:7), giving correction (Proverbs 25:12; 27:5-6; 28:23), speaking to needs (Proverbs 12:18, 25; 15:4; 16:24), and coming to another person’s defense (Proverbs 14:25; 24:11; 31:8-9). All of those uses focus on building up others with wisdom and not building up ourselves with self-praise.




Proverbs 20:23

Divers weights are an abomination unto the LORD; and a false balance is not good.
– Proverbs 20:23

Dishonest business and trade practices have been addressed previously (Proverbs 11:1; 20:10), and all the same implications persist (See commentary 11:1 and 20:10). God is sovereign, meaning the just standard of measure is in his hand and he also sees through all deceptions and will judge justly. If we read this proverb with the previous in mind, we will not think it acceptable to cheat the cheater just because he cheated us first (Proverbs 24:29).

Listen to the Proverbs sermon series