What does Proverbs 25:27 mean?
ESV: It is not good to eat much honey, nor is it glorious to seek one’s own glory.
NIV: It is not good to eat too much honey, nor is it honorable to search out matters that are too deep.
NASB: It is not good to eat much honey, Nor is it glory to search out one’s own glory.
CSB: It is not good to eat too much honey or to seek glory after glory.
NLT: It’s not good to eat too much honey, and it’s not good to seek honors for yourself.
KJV: It is not good to eat much honey: so for men to search their own glory is not glory.
NKJV: It is not good to eat much honey; So to seek one’s own glory is not glory.
Verse Commentary:
A prior proverb mentioned the danger in having "too much of a good thing" (Proverbs 25:16). Overeating happens when someone wants to feel good, so they try to pile on too much food and wind up feeling worse. A person who seeks too much glory—excess honor, respect, titles, or reputation—winds up appearing un-glorious to others. Scholars note that the ending phrases of this proverb, in Hebrew, are somewhat obscure. Most take it to support the first phrases as a warning against excess, even in positive things.

Every Christian should remember that his body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, and he was bought with a price, the blood of Christ. Therefore, he should glorify God, not himself (see 1 Corinthians 6:19–20). Living out this truth keeps a Christian from falling into the disgrace alluded to in Proverbs 25:26. That knowledge should motivate believers to regulate urges, including eating habits. First Corinthians 10:31 says, "So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."

Furthermore, every believer needs to honor the truth given in Isaiah 42:8: "I am the LORD; that is my name; my glory I give to no other." Seeking one's own glory is the epitome of pride, and James 4:6 says, "God opposes the proud." A person who tries to make their body feel good with too much food only makes the body feel worse. A person who tries to make their spirit feel good with too much personal pride and glory only makes themselves feel smaller and less valuable.
Verse Context:
Proverbs 25:15–28 provides sound counsel about personal relationships. Most of the teachings involve the best way to interact with others, whether they are friends, enemies, spouses, or strangers. Also included are suggestions about self-control.
Chapter Summary:
This chapter includes more statements from Solomon, copied by scribes of King Hezekiah many years later. The first section speaks about the risks of arrogance. The next gives comparisons which teach spiritual lessons. The last segment teaches about relationships, reputation, and self-control.
Chapter Context:
Chapter 25 begins to relate more wise statements from Solomon. Depending on where they are divided or combined, these amount to around one hundred portions of godly wisdom. These were compiled and added about 250 years after Solomon's reign by men under the direction of King Hezekiah. The phrasing used in verse 1 suggests these were copied from other records into the scrolls associated with the prior proverbs. This collection runs through the end of chapter 29.
Book Summary:
Proverbs is best understood in context with the books of Ecclesiastes and Job. In Proverbs, “wisdom” is given in short, simple, general terms. Ecclesiastes represents wisdom based on observation and experience. This often shows how the general principles of the book of Proverbs don’t apply in absolutely every circumstance. Job represents wisdom based on the experience of suffering and injustice. All three come to the conclusion that God does indeed know best, and the most sensible course of action is to follow His will.
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