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For they are life to the ones discovering them,
and health to a person’s whole body. Bible

“body.” The Hebrew text is literally “flesh,” but in this case it refers to the whole body. This is an example of the figure of speech synecdoche, which generally occurs when a whole is put for a part of, or as here, where a part is put for the whole for emphasis (the emphasis occurs because the statement catches our attention). Literally, “flesh” excludes the blood, bones, etc., but in this case those things are included. One way we can be sure that this verse is a synecdoche is that we would not normally think in terms of “all their flesh” (or, “their whole flesh”), so the inclusion of the word “all” alerts us to the synecdoche. E. W. Bullinger has an entire subsection on the word “flesh” being put for the body in his entry on synecdoche in his work, Figures of Speech Used in the Bible.


Commentary for: Proverbs 4:22