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As a thorn goeth up into the hand of a drunkard, so is a parable in the mouth of fools.
– Proverbs 26:9The word for parable is most often translated proverb in the Old Testament. It usually refers to a wisdom saying, like the proverbs in this book. The first phrase is a little more difficult. The word for drunkard means intoxicated person. The likely image is a drunken person grabbing a thorn bush, or branch, to possible use as a weapon or instrument. His senseless state means he doesn’t realize what he grabbed and that it will prove as hurtful to him as to anyone else. So, a fool does not understand a proverb and, therefore, will not use it correctly. Proverbs are fashioned in wisdom and require skill to understand and teach (Ecclesiastes 12:11).
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