Hebrew transliteration NKJV ASH
הָסֵ֣ר מִ֖מְּךָ עִקְּשׁ֣וּת פֶּ֑ה וּלְז֥וּת שְׂ֜פָתַ֗יִם הַרְחֵ֥ק מִמֶּֽךָּ
עֵינֶיךָ לְנֹ֣כַח יַבִּ֑יטוּ וְ֜עַפְעַפֶּ֗יךָ יַיְשִׁ֥רוּ נֶגְדֶּֽךָ
פַּלֵס מַעְגַּ֣ל רַגְלֶ֑ךָ וְֽכָל־דְּרָכֶ֥יךָ יִכֹּֽנוּ
אַֽל־תֵּט־יָמִ֥ין וּשְׂמֹ֑אול הָסֵ֖ר רַגְלְךָ֣ מֵרָֽע
24 hā·sêr mim·mə·ḵā ‘iq·qə·šūṯ peh; ū·lə·zūṯ p̄ā·ṯa·yim, har·ḥêq mim·me·kā. 25 ‘ê·ne·ḵā lə·nō·ḵaḥ yab·bî·ṭū; wə·‘ap̄·‘ap·pe·ḵā, yay·ši·rū neḡ·de·ḵā. 26 pal·lês ma‘·gal raḡ·le·ḵā; wə·ḵāl də·rā·ḵe·ḵā yik·kō·nū. ’al- têṭ- 27 yā·mîn ū·śə·mō·wl; hā·sêr raḡ·lə·ḵā mê·rā‘.
24 Put away from you a deceitful mouth, and put perverse lips far from you.
25 Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you.
26 Ponder the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established.
27 Do not turn to the right or the left; remove your foot from evil.
24 Take crooked speech away from yourself, and put devious lips far away from you.
25 Let your eyes look forward, and let your eyelids look straight ahead of you.
26 Weigh the path of your feet, and all your ways will be established.
27 Turn neither to the right nor to the left; keep your feet away from evil.
INTRO to the COMMENTARY:
Lies, intrigues, contrivances, deceptions and fallacious reasoning increase evil and turn away from GOD who is Pure Truth. Truth is simple and understandable even by a child, while falsehood elaborate and complicated. Those who operate in intrigue will never live happily, for as Confucius wisely said, “Life is indeed simple, but we insist on making it complicated.”
Before you continue reading take just one minute to imagine a World without Lies….
Well, there is no need to comment on how close we may be to the Messianic Age of peace and well-being for all.
In the classical Jewish commentaries on this passage, the focus is on the importance of truth and honesty in speaking. The Talmud, for example, interprets the phrase “turn away from you a deceitful mouth” to mean that one should not only avoid lying, but also deceiving or withholding information that might lead others to make erroneous assumptions. The Talmud also stresses the importance of speaking with kindness and gentleness rather than harsh or offensive words.
In Christian commentaries, the focus is often on the importance of staying on the path of righteousness and avoiding temptation. Many Christian commentators interpret the phrase “deviate neither to the right nor to the left” as a warning not to stray from GOD’s commandments, where “step” is interspersed as a “movement” moving into the “Light,” keeping the focus on the good, resisting the temptations of the world: the “path of righteousness.”
Muslims believe that truthful speech, and righteous conduct, are essential elements of a virtuous life, while lying and deception lead to spiritual and moral corruption.
The passage under consideration also advises against following the “ways of the wicked,” another theme that echoes in Islamic teachings. Indeed, Muslims believe that they should strive to follow the example of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of GOD be upon him) and live by the principles of justice, compassion and righteousness. This involves avoiding actions and behaviors that are considered sinful or harmful, seeking instead to cultivate moral excellence and spiritual purity.
Overall, the passage in the Book of Proverbs 4:24-27 offers important guidance on the importance of speaking and acting wisely and the dangers of dishonesty and deception. These teachings serve throughout the Abrahamic religions as a source of inspiration and guidance for all who seek to live virtuous, self-improving lives with worthy purpose.