Proverbs 10:12 (NKJV) — 12 Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all sins.
The source of strife and the attitude of love. What stirs up strife? It may be called many things, such as “concern,” but it is actually hatred. By contrast, those who truly love others will not look for opportunities to expose their errors for public ridicule but will seek to restore them as privately as possible.
Proverbs 17:9 (NKJV) — 9 He who covers a transgression seeks love, But he who repeats a matter separates friends.
Proverbs 10:11 (NKJV) — 11 The mouth of the righteous is a well of life, But violence covers the mouth of the wicked.
The mouth is a well. The mouth brings forth attitudes and thoughts from deep within a person’s spirit. With the words of our mouth we have the ability to impart life or death, both to ourselves and others. (See Proverbs 18:21.) Again a warning is given: violence covers the mouth of the wicked. We must not speak words of violence for words have a powerful impact upon thoughts and expectations. For this reason, it is not appropriate to threaten to “kill” someone or “break someone’s neck.” Above all, we must not take it upon ourselves to pronounce damnation upon anyone. Only God can make pronouncements about eternity, and even He is not willing that any should perish.
Proverbs 10:10 (NKJV) — 10 He who winks with the eye causes trouble, But a prating fool will fall.
Be careful about the winkers. Winking with the eye here indicates craftiness and concealment. Again the warning is given: a chattering fool shall fall.
Proverbs 10:10 (NIV) — 10 Whoever winks maliciously causes grief, and a chattering fool comes to ruin.
Proverbs 6:12–15 (NIV) — 12 A troublemaker and a villain, who goes about with a corrupt mouth, 13 who winks maliciously with his eye, signals with his feet and motions with his fingers, 14 who plots evil with deceit in his heart— he always stirs up conflict. 15 Therefore disaster will overtake him in an instant; he will suddenly be destroyed—without remedy.
Proverbs 10:9 (NKJV) — 9 He who walks with integrity walks securely, But he who perverts his ways will become known.
The importance of walking right. Those who live right and do right have the greatest security in the world. Sin will be found out, however, and it will be exposed. If it is not uncovered now, it will be at the judgment. (See Revelation 20:11-15.)
Proverbs 10:8 (NKJV) — 8 The wise in heart will receive commands, But a prating fool will fall.
A mark of wisdom. Wise persons will not resist learning yet another lesson. They love reproof. They are teachable. Those with loose lips will trip on them and fall. One of the marks of fools is their prating, which means chatter, idle talk, constant and foolish speech.
Proverbs 10:7 (NKJV) — 7 The memory of the righteous is blessed, But the name of the wicked will rot.
The lessons of history. Eternity and to some extent human history reveal the ultimate blessing of righteousness and the shame of wickedness. Even the names of those who have done right evoke praise, but the names of those who have done evil call forth abhorrence.
Proverbs 10:6 (NKJV) — 6 Blessings are on the head of the righteous, But violence covers the mouth of the wicked.
Blessings or violence? The righteous are blessed and cannot be cursed. But the wicked bring many curses upon themselves by the violence of their mouths. Contrary to popular opinion, people die as they have lived. If they lived cursing, they tend to die cursing. People form habits that are hard to break, even when those habits are destroying them.
Proverbs 10:5 (NKJV) — 5 He who gathers in summer is a wise son; He who sleeps in harvest is a son who causes shame.
A time to gather. Wisdom prompts a person to gather in the time of harvest, to do the right thing at the right time. Some suppose it is simply luck that puts a person in just the right place at the right time, but usually, it is wisdom. When opportunity knocks, some people are so drowsy they cannot hear it.
Proverbs 10:4 (NKJV) — 4 He who has a slack hand becomes poor, But the hand of the diligent makes rich.
Poverty and riches. The “slack hand” speaks of an open, ineffective hand or palm. The slack hand neglects to maintain what it presently has, both physically and spiritually. (See Proverbs 24:30-34.) A slack hand is wasteful. Valuable things that are often wasted include (1) time (our most precious asset); (2) resources; (3) energy (on worthless pursuits); (4) money. Those with a slack hand get too much sleep, which is as bad as too little (Proverbs 19:15). They use imagined excuses to justify their lack of effort (Proverbs 22:13). They will say, “There’s no need to try.” Those with a slack hand make signs of activity, but they never get anywhere (Proverbs 26:14). They neglect things that obviously need doing (Ecclesiastes 10:18). They will not use what they have. They reason that if they had as much as someone else they would do something, but since they have only a little, they will do nothing (Matthew 25:24-25). Dealing with a slack hand will bring people to poverty, regardless of how much they begin with.
The “hand of the diligent” speaks of a hand that is braced for work. The diligent hand is the opposite of the slack hand. Diligent persons will do what is necessary to maintain their present position, both spiritually and physically, and to improve their lot. They are not wasteful. They conserve time, resources, energy, and money. They neither sleep too much nor too little. They do not use excuses to justify a lack of effort. Their activity is purposeful and will accomplish results. They will do the things that need doing. They will use what they have, not worrying about others who have more.