Proverbs 16:9
A man's heart devises his way: but the LORD directs his steps.
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16:4. God makes use of the wicked to execute righteous vengeance on each other; and he will be glorified by their destruction at last. 5. Though sinners strengthen themselves and one another, they shall not escape God's judgments. 6. By the mercy and truth of God in Christ Jesus, the sins of believers are taken away, and the power of sin is broken. 7. He that has all hearts in his hand, can make a man's enemies to be at peace with him. 8. A small estate, honestly come by, will turn to better account than a great estate ill-gotten. 9. If men make God's glory their end, and his will their rule, he will direct their steps by his Spirit and grace. 10. Let kings and judges of the earth be just, and rule in the fear of God. 11. To observe justice in dealings between man and man is God's appointment.Deviseth his way - i. e., Thinks it out with anxious care; yet it is the Lord and He only who directs the steps. Compare Proverbs 16:1.
A man's heart deviseth his way,.... This is to be understood, not of a wicked man, in whose heart is frowardness, and who devises mischief and evil imaginations continually, Proverbs 6:14; for such are an abomination to the Lord; nor will he direct their goings, or prosper and succeed them in their ways: but of a good man, or righteous man, as Aben Ezra; who thinks of the way in which he should go, and desires to walk in a right way, as Jarchi; and who is influenced by the Spirit and grace of God to think and act in this manner; for otherwise the way of man is not in himself; it is not of his own devising and finding out; nor is his disposition to walk in it of himself; and it is only such a man, a good man, whose steps are ordered by the Lord, as follows; see Jeremiah 10:23;

but the Lord directeth his steps: to go right on, and not turn to the right hand or the left; and to walk safely and surely, through a variety of troubles and difficulties, to his kingdom and glory.

A {e} man's heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.

(e) He shows the folly of man who thinks that his ways are in his own hand, and yet is not able to move one foot unless God gives force.

3 Roll on Jahve thy works,

   So thy thoughts shall prosper.

The proverbs PRomans 16:1-3 are wanting in the lxx; their absence is compensated for by three others, but only externally, not according to their worth. Instead of גּל, the Syr., Targ., and Jerome read גּל, revela, with which the על, Psalm 37:5, cf. Psalm 55:23, interchanging with אל (here and at Psalm 22:9), does not agree; rightly Theodotion, κύλισον ἐπὶ κύριον, and Luther, "commend to the Lord thy works." The works are here, not those that are executed, Exodus 23:16, but those to be executed, as Psalm 90:17, where כּונן, here the active to ויכּונוּ, which at Proverbs 4:26 as jussive meant to be placed right, here with ו of the consequence in the apodosis imperativi: to be brought about, and to have continuance, or briefly: to stand (cf. Proverbs 12:3) as the contrast of disappointment or ruin. We should roll on God all matters which, as obligations, burden us, and on account of their weight and difficulty cause us great anxiety, for nothing is too heavy or too hard for Him who can overcome all difficulties and dissolve all perplexities; then will our thoughts, viz., those about the future of our duty and our life-course, be happy, nothing will remain entangled and be a failure, but will be accomplished, and the end and aim be realized.

9. (Compare Pr 16:3).


A man's heart deviseth his way - This is precisely the same sentiment as that contained in the first verse, on the true meaning of which so much has been already said. 16:9 Deviseth - Proposes what he will do. Directeth - Over - rules and disposes all his designs and actions.
Proverbs 16:8
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