“Whoso” in Proverbs: Part 5

“Whoso” in Proverbs: Part 5

Our previous studies of this subject have shown us that the word “whoso” is found 27 times in the book of Proverbs (KJV). As seen, this accounts for exactly one-half of the times that the word is found throughout the Bible. We continue with a look at another of these instances from this great book of wisdom.

Solomon stated, “Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house” (Prov. 17:13). As we have noted previously, the proverbial statements found in this book are not to be taken as unequivocal, absolute or without conditions, qualifications or exceptions. For example, Proverbs 22:16 is often cited as “proof” that faithful children will always be the product of faithful parents, and that if a child goes astray it is always in some way a parent’s or parents’ fault. The passage states: “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” While this is a general rule, it is not a hard and fast proposition. Briefly, confirmation of this lies in the comparison of Eli and Samuel. Both had sons who became wicked; yet, only Eli was condemned for not having had a greater influence over his children (cf. I Sam. 3:13; 8:3).

In the same manner the passage currently under consideration is a general rule, not an unequivocal statement that has no exceptions. Generally speaking, one who rewards good with evil will know evil for the most part throughout his life. This is, as it were, the nature of the beast. The law of sowing and reaping certainly comes into play (Gal. 6:7). One who constantly sows the seeds of evil and wickedness can only expect to reap the same. Little raises the ire that rewarding good with evil brings (cf. Ps. 35:12; 109:5; II Sam. 10). A prime example of this is David, in his sin with Bathsheba. After revealing to David, “thou art the man,” God, through Nathan, revealed all that He had done for David (II Sam. 12:7, 8). Then, in return for all that God had done for him, David committed adultery with Bathsheba and had Uriah killed. God asked, “Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in his sight?” (II Sam. 12:9). David had returned evil for good and, as a result, would know much evil in his life (II Sam. 12:10-14).

As Christians, we must make sure not only that we do not return evil for good, but also that we not return evil for evil (cf. Rom. 12:17; I Thes. 5:15; I Pet. 3:9). In so living we can be assured inasmuch as is possible that evil will not abide in our lives.



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