7…what you have seen with your eyes 8 do not bring hastily to court, for what will you do in the end if your neighbor puts you to shame?
Our modern Bibles have chapters and verses that did not exist in the early handwritten copies of Scripture. So translators sometimes differ with how they see a verse.
Admittedly, in each case, their thoughts do suggest a fresh way of looking at a passage, but it really doesn’t change much. Here, while we’re looking at the wise saying of verse 8, the NIV translators also used the last line of verse 7 (the KJV didn’t).
Either way, the issue is to not go “hastily to court.” Ancient courts were rather informal and, in a temper fit, someone might decide to bring quick legal action against another. This wise saying suggests that’s not a good idea.
The reason is — what happens “in the end if your neighbor puts you to shame?” This is one of those proverbs that simply reminds us to think before we act.
That’s a problem for someone like me. I tend to be a “get ‘er done” kind of guy. I get a “good idea” and roll with it, only to realize later there were a bunch of variables I didn’t consider. Just ask my wife!
So, for me, the message of this verse is simple. If I insist on making a fool out of myself — at least don’t do it in public!