Proverbs & Previews

A proverb is to a parable, as a trailer is to a movie. Or, to explain it further, a proverb is a concentrated statement, usually of one to three lines, which is straightforward and meaty, whereas a parable is a full story that shows the meaning of a meaty statement. Parables are sometimes like riddles and can be hard to figure out; but usually, with a bit of study, most can be understood. Readers of the book of Proverbs should ask three questions: “(1) What virtue does this proverb commend? (2) What vice does it disapprove of? (3) What value does it affirm?” (Introduction to Proverbs, ESV website, accessed March 17, 2020,