“It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.” Proverbs 21:9
“It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.” Proverbs 21:19 (KJB)
Between the Rooftop and the Desert – Proverbs 21:9-19
Verses 9, 19 – In the days of ancient Israel rooftops were flat, and used quite often for relaxing in the evening, or early morning. The husband or wife could go to the rooftop, without leaving home, to get away from the other.
The desert or “wilderness” was not home. This is leaving the house entirely.
Verse 10 – Between home and the wilderness are many temptations. The wicked desire evil, and one of those evils is no love for their neighbor.
Verse 11 – There is also much learning. The “simple” (Naive, foolish, open minded) learn by seeing the “scorner” (One who mocks God and religion) punished for their evil mouth and behavior. The wise seek every opportunity to learn of God, holiness, righteousness, salvation- through the writings of others and reading them and applying them to their own lives.
Verse 12 – “The righteous maketh the house of the wicked to prosper.” Gersom from John Gill Commentary e-Sword. A good example is the house of Potipher with Joseph (Genesis 39:1-7). God has blessed the United States of America because of the Righteous. In the end the wicked will be overthrown. Not by the United States, but by the breath of the Lord Jesus Christ when He comes again.
Taking out the italicized words consider this for verse 12…
“The righteous wisely considers the house of the wicked, overthrowing the wicked for wickedness.” v.12
Verse 13 – A stern warning about turning away from the cries of the poor. To willfully neglect to hear and help the poor when it is in the power of our hand to do it could bring the same judgment on ourselves. Luke 16:10-31
Verse 14 – See Proverbs 17:8; 18:16. “The Bible often reports facts without approving them. Thus it observes that an angry man will quiet down if the offender slips him a gift, and a man who is in a rage is appeased by a bribe tucked in his pocket.” From Believer’s Bible Commentary
Verse 15 – People who are just rejoice when Judgment or justice is done. There is ruin or destruction to those who work iniquity. It is proper to rejoice in righteous judgment. It is iniquity to rejoice when evil is done.
Verse 16 – 18 – The wandering individual, the one who goes astray from the paths of God and understanding find themselves with the dead. When pleasure is all that one seeks they will not be rich.
For verse 18 consider Haman’s taking the place of Mordecai (Esther 7).
Verse 19 – Between the Rooftop and the Desert there are many things to understand and learn. There are sometimes troubles at home, and there are in the desert as well; with or without a spouse. The thing is for the people of God to be faithful and true to Him who is with us always.