Proverbs 29:25

The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe.
– Proverbs 29:25

Fearing man is contrasted with trusting the Lord in this saying. The snare is a picturesque word from the hunting and trapping of birds or small game. The wicked and the fool are taken in snares (Proverbs 12:13; 18:7) but wisdom and fear of the Lord delivers from snares (Proverbs 13:14; 14:27). Fear of man seems safe but is a trap.

The word for trust means to take refuge and when Yahweh is the refuge, it typically indicates a covenantal relationship (Psalms 4:5; 9:10; 13:5; Proverbs 3:5). The refuge motif continues with the word for safe. It means a high place, or lofty place, and indicates security like being in a high, unassailable tower. The word is also used commonly for the protection of Yahweh’s covenant for all who trust in him (Psalms 20:1; Proverbs 18:10).

Proverbs 28:26

He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered.
– Proverbs 28:26

This saying begins with a contrast from the last phrase of the previous verse. The very essence of folly is trusting in one’s own understanding (Proverbs 3:5). The fool follows his own way and walks by the suggestions of his own mind (Proverbs 14:12, 15; 15:14; 17:24). The first phrase emphasizes wisdom is from outside of us and must be received. To walk wisely is not to trust in oneself. Those who walk wisely will find safety (Proverbs 3:5-6; 28:18; 29:25).

Proverbs 28:25

He that is of a proud heart stirreth up strife: but he that putteth his trust in the LORD shall be made fat.
– Proverbs 28:25

Verses 25-27 are sayings touching on issues of self-sufficiency, such as pride and greed. A proud heart is here contrasted with trust in the Lord. The word for proud is more often translated large and broad. Being made fat is typically a figure of prosperity, or abundance. Contrasting the two gives the first phrase the sense of a large heart, or large appetite, and so means greedy. The saying amounts to greed bringing contention and trust in the Lord bringing prosperity. This saying would add greed to list of what stirs up strife: lying (Proverbs 6:14, 19), hatred (Proverbs 10:12), quick anger (Proverbs 15:18; 29:22), and froward gossip (Proverbs 16:27-28).

Proverbs 22:19

That thy trust may be in the LORD, I have made known to thee this day, even to thee.
– Proverbs 22:19

This verse continues the benefits of the humble commitment to acquire wisdom. Growing in wisdom means a deepening trust in the Lord God. This gives us a view of the true nature of wisdom. Wisdom is not to grow our heads so we trust in our own intelligence. Acquiring true wisdom will mean fearing the Lord, forsaking your own inclinations, and faithfully clinging to him (Proverbs 3:5-7).

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Proverbs 21:31

The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but safety is of the LORD.
– Proverbs 21:31

The word for safety means deliverance. Referent to the first phrase, that deliverance is a successful defense from attack or victory. The war horse mentioned is a strong and valuable asset. Man can train and guide a horse (James 3:3), and so prepare it for battle. The proverb does not condemn arms and fortification, but rather the trust in such things (Psalm 20:7; 33:17-18). The prophets often rebuked Israel and Judah for trusting more in the strength of foreign nations than in the word of Yahweh (Isaiah 31:1-3). Wisdom doesn’t teach the futility of arming ourselves, but in trusting in those arms. Wisdom teaches us to trust in Yahweh who can deliver with or without man and his strength (2 Chronicles 14:11).

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Proverbs 16:3

Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established.
– Proverbs 16:3

The word for commit means to roll on and indicates total reliance. The word for works simply means things done. The first part of the proverb teaches a full submission to God’s will in all our thoughts and doings. This is to walk in wisdom and results in our thoughts being established, or stood upright. Trusting God in this way relieves burden and prospers us in his way (Proverbs 19:21).

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Proverbs 3:5

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
– Proverbs 3:5

Trust and lean both point to being fully supported. It indicates a full reliance and not just a little help or aid. Our full reliance and full confidence is to be in the Lord and his wisdom. Solomon warns that we have a natural inclination and tendency (Proverbs 14:12; 16:25), but we are to abandon that for the heavenly wisdom. Paul speaks similarly that the natural mind has a bent and needs to be renewed (Ephesians 4:23; Colossians 3:10; Romans 12:2).

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Psalm 119:42

So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me:
for I trust in thy word.

~ Psalm 119:42

So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me

The Psalmist furnishes further reason for the mercies of God to come to him, that he would have an answer to his enemies. God’s people are quickly reproached whenever their circumstances look grim. Let one of God’s people endure a visible trial and the gainsayers quickly line up to rain reproaches on his head.

The relief here sought is similar to David’s prayer in trials (Psalm 86:17; 35:1-4). It is actually a common prayer for God’s people (Psalm 31:17-18; 35:26; 40:14-15; 70:2-3; 71:24). So it is also a guide and comfort to us today when people mock and say, “Where is thy God?” (Psalm 42:3).

for I trust in thy word

This trust is had while he is yet awaiting God’s mercies. He is in the midst of trial and though he does not yet have answer for his enemies, his heart and hope are fixed. The pleader of God’s mercies does not doubt their arrival, it is only a matter of when. Here again he trusts in the word, for God’s mercies will come in His time (Galatians 1:15).

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