Proverbs 28:11

ESV A rich man is wise in his own eyes, but a poor man who has understanding will find him out.
NIV The rich are wise in their own eyes; one who is poor and discerning sees how deluded they are.
NASB The rich person is wise in his own eyes, But the poor who has understanding sees through him.
CSB A rich person is wise in his own eyes, but a poor one who has discernment sees through him.
NLT Rich people may think they are wise, but a poor person with discernment can see right through them.
KJV The rich man is wise in his own conceit; but the poor that hath understanding searcheth him out.

What does Proverbs 28:11 mean?

Wealth can be spiritually dangerous (Matthew 19:23) in part because it tempts us towards self-reliance. The Book of Proverbs notes that hard work and common sense are more likely to lead to success (Proverbs 10:4; 12:11; 28:19). However, it also recognizes that life is greatly influenced by factors outside our control (Proverbs 16:9; 27:1). Those who obtain material wealth should not assume their success is entirely their own. God's arrangement of circumstances and the choices of others matter, as well (Job 1:21). Just because one is wealthy does not necessarily mean one is correct in any particular way. A poor, struggling person who relies on godly wisdom (Proverbs 1:7) may overtake the arrogant person who thinks riches imply intelligence.

James 1:16–17 cautions: "Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change." One of the faults Jesus found in the church at Laodicea was its self-confidence. Because it was successful in the material world it assumed it needed nothing. However, Jesus referred to that church as pitiful and in great danger. Jesus was ready to symbolically spit the church out of his mouth (Revelation 3:14–22). Possessing wealth doesn't make a person wise. A wise person sees through the rich person's boast.
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