13 Wisdom is found in the words[a] of the discerning person,[b] but the one who lacks sense[c] will be disciplined.[d]
Proverbs 10:13tnHeb “on the lips” (so NAB, NASB, NRSV). The term “lips” is a metonymy of cause for the words spoken by the lips.
Proverbs 10:13tnHeb “the one who is discerning.” The term “discerning” describes someone who is critically perceptive and has understanding. He can be relied on to say things that are wise.
Proverbs 10:13tnHeb “the one lacking of mind.” The term לֵב (lev, “mind, heart”) is used as a metonymy of association for what one does with the mind (i.e., thinking), and so refers to discernment, wisdom, good sense.
Proverbs 10:13tnHeb “a rod is for the back of the one lacking heart.” The term שֵׁבֶט (shevet, “rod”) functions figuratively: synecdoche of specific (= rod of discipline) for general (= discipline in general). The term גֵּו (gev, “back”) is a synecdoche of part (= back) for the whole (= person as a whole). The back is emphasized because it was the object of physical corporeal discipline. This proverb is not limited in its application to physical corporeal punishment because the consequences of foolishness may come in many forms, physical corporeal discipline being only one form.
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