What attitudes toward charity are expressed in these proverbs?
Better is open rebuke
than hidden love. (1)
If your enemies are hungry, give them bread to eat;
and if they are thirsty, give them water to drink;
for you will heap coals of fire on their heads, (2)
and the Lord will reward you.
Whoever blesses a neighbor with a loud voice,
rising early in the morning,
will be counted as cursing. (3)
New Revised Standard Version
(2) It has been suggested that carrying a pan of hot coals on the head was a form of penance for sin. The meaning of the proverb would then be that when you forgive those who have wronged young you will make them feel painfully guilty. The best revenge is no revenge. Compare this proverb with the attitude expressed toward enemies above, in Exodus 23:4-5.
(3) Clearly the speaker likes to sleep in!
This is an excerpt from Reading
About the World, Volume 1, edited by Paul Brians, Mary Gallwey, Douglas Hughes, Azfar Hussain, Richard Law, Michael Myers
Michael Neville, Roger Schlesinger, Alice Spitzer, and Susan Swan and published by
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