Proverbs 30:28

ESV the lizard you can take in your hands, yet it is in kings’ palaces.
NIV a lizard can be caught with the hand, yet it is found in kings' palaces.
NASB The lizard you may grasp with the hands, Yet it is in kings’ palaces.
CSB a lizard can be caught in your hands, yet it lives in kings' palaces.
NLT Lizards — they are easy to catch, but they are found even in kings’ palaces.
KJV The spider taketh hold with her hands, and is in kings' palaces.

What does Proverbs 30:28 mean?

Here, Agur (Proverbs 30:1) uses a Hebrew word derived from the root semāmit, which has some connection to the idea of "desolation." That, in turn, might be a reference to the wilderness or to something like poisoning. Some translators have rendered the word as "spider," but most indicate it as some kind of lizard. This is the last of four examples showing that small, insignificant things can accomplish amazing feats. Tiny ants can gather food. Hyraxes can live in cliffs and rocks. Locusts swarm and conquer like organized armies.

Semi-tropical climates around the world are filled with examples of small reptiles who manage to get into homes despite efforts to keep them out. The lizard noted here seems to be small, possibly like a gecko. As it happens, such lizards are excellent climbers, finding their way into almost any open space. A person would be hard-pressed to sneak into a king's palace; the lizard does it with relative ease. This is especially ironic since they are not difficult to catch by hand. However, they can also harbor bacteria or fungus which easily infect a bite; while not literally "venomous," they might be thought of that way.

This demonstrates God's providential care of the animal kingdom as well as human beings. Human beings are frail and mortal, but God loves all human beings and gave His Son to provide for their salvation. It is wise to trust in God not only for salvation but also for our daily needs. Jesus taught us to put God and His kingdom first, promising, "and [life's essentials] will be added to you" (Matthew 6:33). The apostle Paul promises, "And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).
What is the Gospel?
Download the app: