Proverbs 7:7

ESV and I have seen among the simple, I have perceived among the youths, a young man lacking sense,
NIV I saw among the simple, I noticed among the young men, a youth who had no sense.
NASB And I saw among the naive, And discerned among the youths A young man lacking sense,
CSB I saw among the inexperienced, I noticed among the youths, a young man lacking sense.
NLT I saw some naive young men, and one in particular who lacked common sense.
KJV And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding,

What does Proverbs 7:7 mean?

As part of explaining how his wisdom comes from experience, Solomon has been using the metaphor of looking out his window to observe the world (Proverbs 7:6). Among those observations are gullible youths, and especially those who lack good sense. This image of a reckless young man will be the basis of another warning about adultery, coming soon in this chapter (Proverbs 7:10–23).

Not all young men are senseless, but some are. The same could be said of young women. In fact, no matter what age a man or woman is, he or she can be senseless. But youth is a period of life in which emotions are sometimes more prone to govern a person's actions. Instead of pursuing the right way, unguarded emotions can lead a young man down a disastrous road. The story of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11–24) illustrates this truth. Wanting to satisfy his lust for riotous living, the prodigal left home with his share of the father's inheritance and traveled to a far country, where he wasted his money and became destitute and desperate. He learned the hard way that he had foolishly listened to his emotions instead of his head.

At the same time, a young man may be wise beyond his years. Certainly, Timothy was young when he was a pastor. The congregation needed to recognize Timothy's calling, therefore Paul told Timothy to let no one despise him for his youth (1 Timothy 4:12).
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