Proverbs 25:27

It is not good to eat much honey: so for men to search their own glory is not glory.
– Proverbs 25:27

The wording of this proverb is difficult and the surprising second line has led to wide speculations. Previous proverbs have highlighted the benefits of honey and the necessity of moderation (Proverbs 24:13; 25:16). Overindulging in honey ruins it. The very quality that makes it desirable and pleasurable, its sweetness, is the same quality that makes it nauseating when gorged on. The second line of this proverb connects to the first in that way. Men searching their own glory ruins the very thing they are seeking.

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Proverbs 25:16

Hast thou found honey? Eat so much as is sufficient for thee, lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it.
– Proverbs 25:16

Verses 16-17 deal with moderation. The imagery of the saying is easily understandable. Consuming too much honey could lead to stomach sickness. Applications of this verse are numerous. There is a point of enough and going beyond it ruins rather than enhances the pleasure. We’ve all probably had the experience as a kid of gorging ourselves on some food or candy until we made ourselves sick. So we discover boundaries and limits are not limits of joy, but rather enhancers of joy and, therefore, gracious.

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