To get what Proverbs 4:4 means based on its source text, scroll down or follow these links for the original scriptural meaning , biblical context and relative popularity.

“He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live.”

Medium popularity: 140 searches a month
Popularity relative to other verses in Proverbs chapter 4 using average monthly Google searches.

Proverbs 4:4 Translation & Meaning

What does this verse really mean? Use this table to get a word-for-word translation of the original Hebrew Scripture. This shows the English words related to the source biblical texts along with brief definitions. Follow the buttons in the right-hand column for detailed definitions and verses that use the same root words. Use this reference information to gain deeper insight into the Bible and enrich your understanding. Information based on Strong's Exhaustive Concordance[1].

KJV Verse Original Hebrew Meaning/ Definition
This is a simplified translation of the original Hebrew word. Follow the buttons on the right to get more detail.
Use the buttons below to get details on the Hebrew word and view related Bible verses that use the same root word.
He taught וַיֹּרֵ֗נִי Properly, to flow as water (i.e., to rain); transitively, to lay or throw (especially an arrow, i.e., to shoot); figuratively, to point out (as if by aiming the finger), to teach taught
me also, and said וַיֹּ֥אמֶר To say (used with great latitude) also said
unto me, Let thine heart לִבֶּ֑ךָ The heart; also used (figuratively) very widely for the feelings, the will and even the intellect; likewise for the center of anything Let thine heart
retain יִֽתְמָךְ To sustain; by implication, to obtain, keep fast; figuratively, to help, follow close retain
my words: דְּבָרַ֥י A word; by implication, a matter (as spoken of) or thing; adverbially, a cause words
keep שְׁמֹ֖ר Properly, to hedge about (as with thorns), i.e., guard; generally, to protect, attend to, etc keep
my commandments, מִצְוֹתַ֣י A command, whether human or divine (collectively, the Law) commandments
and live. וֶֽחְיֵֽה׃ To live, whether literally or figuratively; causatively, to revive live

Verse Context

See Proverbs 4:4 with its adjacent verses in bold below. Follow either of the two large buttons below to see these verses in their broader context of the King James Bible or a Bible concordance.

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  • 2  For I give you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law.

  • 3  For I was my father's son, tender and only beloved in the sight of my mother.

  • 4  He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live.

  • 5  Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.

  • 6  Forsake her not, and she shall preserve thee: love her, and she shall keep thee.


The King James Bible (1611) and Strong's Concordance (1890) with Hebrew and Greek dictionaries are sourced from the BibleForgeDB database ( within the BibleForge project ( Popularity rankings are based on search volume data from the Google AdWords Keyword Planner tool.

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