And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord; nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: for whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
WILLIAM ARNOT (1808-1875): This passage is taken entire out of the Old Testament and inserted in the New Testament. “My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of His correction: for whom the Lord loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth,” Proverbs 3:11,12.
In quoting the words from the Old Testament, Paul perceived, and pointed out a tender meaning in the form of the expression, “my son.” That formula occurs often in the Proverbs, and a careless reader would pass it as thing of course. Not so this inspired student of the Scripture: he gathers a meaning from the form of the word before he begins to deal with its substance; “the exhortation,” he says, “speaketh unto you as unto children.”
“My son.” The spirit in Paul recognized this as a mark of God’s paternal tenderness, and used it as a ground of glad encouragement to desponding believers. Of design, and not accident, was the word thrown into that form, as it issued at first from the lips of Solomon. God intended thereby to reveal Himself as a Father, and to grave that view of His character in the Scripture as with a pen of iron and the point of a diamond, that the most distant nations and the latest times might know that “as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him,” Psalm 103:13.
MATTHEW POOLE (1624-1679): And whereas it is spoken singularly, My son, it is to every child of God in Christ Jesus, and so collectively includeth all of them.
LORD SHAFTESBURY (1801-1885): How deeply evangelical is that Book of Proverbs! How plainly one may see and feel Christ speaking under the Old Testament as under the New Testament!
STEPHEN CHARNOCK (1628-1680): The Old Testament is therefore to be read for the strengthening of our faith. Our blessed Saviour Himself draws the streams of His doctrine from the Old Testament: He clears up the promise of eternal life, and the doctrine of the resurrection, from the words of the covenant, I am the God of Abraham, etc. Matthew 22:32. And our apostle clears up the doctrine of justification by faith from God’s covenant with Abraham, Romans 4. It must be read, and it must be read as it is writ: it was writ to a Gospel end, it must be studied with a Gospel spirit.
WILLIAM ARNOT: Incidentally, we obtain here a lesson on the interpretation of Scripture. Some would confine themselves to the leading facts and principles, setting aside as unimportant whatever pertains merely to the manner of the communication. By this method much is lost. It is not a thrifty way of managing the bread that cometh down from heaven. Gather up the fragments, that none of them be lost.
A. W. PINK (1886-1952): No detail in Scripture is meaningless.
JOHN WYCLIFFE (1330-1384): It shall greatly help to understand Scripture if thou mark, not only what is spoken or written, but of whom, to whom, with what words, at what time, where, to what intent, and with what circumstances, considering what goes before and what follows.
C. H. SPURGEON (1834-1892): When I get a passage of scripture to meditate upon, I like, if I can, to see its drift; then I like to examine its various parts, and see if I can understand each separate clause; and then I want to go back again, and see what one clause has to do with another.
A. W. PINK: There is nothing meaningless nor superfluous in God’s Word, and every syllable in it should be given its due force and weight.―[Acquire] the habit of noting carefully each detail in a verse, and not hurriedly and carelessly generalizing, as is the custom of so many in this rushing and superficial age. God’s Word is made up of words, each one of which is selected with divine discrimination and precision, and we cannot obtain even the surface and grammatical meaning of any verse except by noting and giving due weight to each term in it. When three or four consecutive verses are before us, often an important truth or lesson is acquired by our observing a change from ‘we’ to ‘ye’, or from the singular to the plural―‘thou’ to ‘you’ or ‘them’; or the tense of the verb.
MARTYN LLOYD-JONES: Every jot and tittle, everything has meaning.
ROBERT HALDANE (1764-1842): In the Scriptures there are many things which, considered only in themselves, appear to be of no value, or, at least, of very little importance; but in reality the Bible contains nothing superfluous—nothing which does not contribute to its perfection, and to the evidence of its divine origin.
C. H. SPURGEON: Those who reject verbal inspiration must in effect condemn the great apostle of the Gentiles, whose teaching is so frequently based upon a word. He makes more of words and names than any of us should have thought of doing, and he was guided therein by the Spirit of the Lord, and therefore he was right. For my part, I am far more afraid of making too little of the Word than of seeing too much in it…Let us learn to read our Bibles with our eyes open, to study them as men do the works of great artists, studying each figure, and even each sweet variety of light and shade.
MARTYN LLOYD-JONES (1899-1981): We must never drive a wedge between the Old Testament and the New. We must never feel that the New makes the Old unnecessary. I feel increasingly that it is very regrettable that the New Testament should ever have been printed alone, because we tend to fall into the serious error of thinking that, because we are Christians, we do not need the Old Testament. It was the Holy Spirit who led the early Church, which was mainly Gentile, to incorporate the Old Testament Scriptures with their New Scriptures and to regard them all as one. They are indissolubly bound together, and there are many senses in which it can be said that the New Testament cannot be truly understood except in the light that is provided by the Old. For example, it is almost impossible to make anything of the Epistle to the Hebrews unless we know our Old Testament Scriptures.
AUGUSTINE (354-430): The New is in the Old concealed; the Old is by the New revealed.
JOHN TRAPP (1601-1699): They agree all in one truth. There are above two hundred places in the Old Testament cited in the New Testament; so that almost in every needful point the harmony is expressed. The Psalms are cited fifty-three times, Genesis forty-two times, Isaiah forty-six times, etc. This shows the wonderful agreement betwixt the books of both Testaments.
THOMAS WATSON (1620-1686): The two testaments are the two lips by which God hath spoken unto us.
JOHN NEWTON (1725-1807): Thus the Old and New Testament do mutually illustrate each other; neither can be well understood singly.