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Proverbs

Proverbs

1The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:

Prologue


2 For learning about wisdom and instruction,
   for understanding words of insight,
3 for gaining instruction in wise dealing,
   righteousness, justice, and equity;
4 to teach shrewdness to the simple,
   knowledge and prudence to the young—
5 let the wise also hear and gain in learning,
   and the discerning acquire skill,
6 to understand a proverb and a figure,
   the words of the wise and their riddles.


7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge;
   fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Warnings against Evil Companions


8 Hear, my child, your father’s instruction,
   and do not reject your mother’s teaching;
9 for they are a fair garland for your head,
   and pendants for your neck.
10 My child, if sinners entice you,
   do not consent.
11 If they say, ‘Come with us, let us lie in wait for blood;
   let us wantonly ambush the innocent;
12 like Sheol let us swallow them alive
   and whole, like those who go down to the Pit.
13 We shall find all kinds of costly things;
   we shall fill our houses with booty.
14 Throw in your lot among us;
   we will all have one purse’—
15 my child, do not walk in their way,
   keep your foot from their paths;
16 for their feet run to evil,
   and they hurry to shed blood.
17 For in vain is the net baited
   while the bird is looking on;
18 yet they lie in wait—to kill themselves!
   and set an ambush—for their own lives!
19 Such is the end* of all who are greedy for gain;
   it takes away the life of its possessors.

The Call of Wisdom


20 Wisdom cries out in the street;
   in the squares she raises her voice.
21 At the busiest corner she cries out;
   at the entrance of the city gates she speaks:
22 ‘How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple?
How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing
   and fools hate knowledge?
23 Give heed to my reproof;
I will pour out my thoughts to you;
   I will make my words known to you.
24 Because I have called and you refused,
   have stretched out my hand and no one heeded,
25 and because you have ignored all my counsel
   and would have none of my reproof,
26 I also will laugh at your calamity;
   I will mock when panic strikes you,
27 when panic strikes you like a storm,
   and your calamity comes like a whirlwind,
   when distress and anguish come upon you.
28 Then they will call upon me, but I will not answer;
   they will seek me diligently, but will not find me.
29 Because they hated knowledge
   and did not choose the fear of the Lord,
30 would have none of my counsel,
   and despised all my reproof,
31 therefore they shall eat the fruit of their way
   and be sated with their own devices.
32 For waywardness kills the simple,
   and the complacency of fools destroys them;
33 but those who listen to me will be secure
   and will live at ease, without dread of disaster.’

The Value of Wisdom

2My child, if you accept my words
   and treasure up my commandments within you,
2 making your ear attentive to wisdom
   and inclining your heart to understanding;
3 if you indeed cry out for insight,
   and raise your voice for understanding;
4 if you seek it like silver,
   and search for it as for hidden treasures—
5 then you will understand the fear of the Lord
   and find the knowledge of God.
6 For the Lord gives wisdom;
   from his mouth come knowledge and understanding;
7 he stores up sound wisdom for the upright;
   he is a shield to those who walk blamelessly,
8 guarding the paths of justice
   and preserving the way of his faithful ones.
9 Then you will understand righteousness and justice
   and equity, every good path;
10 for wisdom will come into your heart,
   and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;
11 prudence will watch over you;
   and understanding will guard you.
12 It will save you from the way of evil,
   from those who speak perversely,
13 who forsake the paths of uprightness
   to walk in the ways of darkness,
14 who rejoice in doing evil
   and delight in the perverseness of evil;
15 those whose paths are crooked,
   and who are devious in their ways.


16 You will be saved from the loose* woman,
   from the adulteress with her smooth words,
17 who forsakes the partner of her youth
   and forgets her sacred covenant;
18 for her way* leads down to death,
   and her paths to the shades;
19 those who go to her never come back,
   nor do they regain the paths of life.


20 Therefore walk in the way of the good,
   and keep to the paths of the just.
21 For the upright will abide in the land,
   and the innocent will remain in it;
22 but the wicked will be cut off from the land,
   and the treacherous will be rooted out of it.

Admonition to Trust and Honour God

3My child, do not forget my teaching,
   but let your heart keep my commandments;
2 for length of days and years of life
   and abundant welfare they will give you.


3 Do not let loyalty and faithfulness forsake you;
   bind them round your neck,
   write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 So you will find favour and good repute
   in the sight of God and of people.


5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
   and do not rely on your own insight.
6 In all your ways acknowledge him,
   and he will make straight your paths.
7 Do not be wise in your own eyes;
   fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
8 It will be a healing for your flesh
   and a refreshment for your body.


9 Honour the Lord with your substance
   and with the first fruits of all your produce;
10 then your barns will be filled with plenty,
   and your vats will be bursting with wine.


11 My child, do not despise the Lord’s discipline
   or be weary of his reproof,
12 for the Lord reproves the one he loves,
   as a father the son in whom he delights.

The True Wealth


13 Happy are those who find wisdom,
   and those who get understanding,
14 for her income is better than silver,
   and her revenue better than gold.
15 She is more precious than jewels,
   and nothing you desire can compare with her.
16 Long life is in her right hand;
   in her left hand are riches and honour.
17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness,
   and all her paths are peace.
18 She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her;
   those who hold her fast are called happy.

God’s Wisdom in Creation


19 The Lord by wisdom founded the earth;
   by understanding he established the heavens;
20 by his knowledge the deeps broke open,
   and the clouds drop down the dew.

The True Security


21 My child, do not let these escape from your sight:
   keep sound wisdom and prudence,
22 and they will be life for your soul
   and adornment for your neck.
23 Then you will walk on your way securely
   and your foot will not stumble.
24 If you sit down,* you will not be afraid;
   when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
25 Do not be afraid of sudden panic,
   or of the storm that strikes the wicked;
26 for the Lord will be your confidence
   and will keep your foot from being caught.


27 Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,*
   when it is in your power to do it.
28 Do not say to your neighbour, ‘Go, and come again;
   tomorrow I will give it’—when you have it with you.
29 Do not plan harm against your neighbour
   who lives trustingly beside you.
30 Do not quarrel with anyone without cause,
   when no harm has been done to you.
31 Do not envy the violent
   and do not choose any of their ways;
32 for the perverse are an abomination to the Lord,
   but the upright are in his confidence.
33 The Lord’s curse is on the house of the wicked,
   but he blesses the abode of the righteous.
34 Towards the scorners he is scornful,
   but to the humble he shows favour.
35 The wise will inherit honour,
   but stubborn fools, disgrace.

Parental Advice

4Listen, children, to a father’s instruction,
   and be attentive, that you may gain* insight;
2 for I give you good precepts:
   do not forsake my teaching.
3 When I was a son with my father,
   tender, and my mother’s favourite,
4 he taught me, and said to me,
‘Let your heart hold fast my words;
   keep my commandments, and live.
5 Get wisdom; get insight: do not forget, nor turn away
   from the words of my mouth.
6 Do not forsake her, and she will keep you;
   love her, and she will guard you.
7 The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom,
   and whatever else you get, get insight.
8 Prize her highly, and she will exalt you;
   she will honour you if you embrace her.
9 She will place on your head a fair garland;
   she will bestow on you a beautiful crown.’

Admonition to Keep to the Right Path


10 Hear, my child, and accept my words,
   that the years of your life may be many.
11 I have taught you the way of wisdom;
   I have led you in the paths of uprightness.
12 When you walk, your step will not be hampered;
   and if you run, you will not stumble.
13 Keep hold of instruction; do not let go;
   guard her, for she is your life.
14 Do not enter the path of the wicked,
   and do not walk in the way of evildoers.
15 Avoid it; do not go on it;
   turn away from it and pass on.
16 For they cannot sleep unless they have done wrong;
   they are robbed of sleep unless they have made someone stumble.
17 For they eat the bread of wickedness
   and drink the wine of violence.
18 But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn,
   which shines brighter and brighter until full day.
19 The way of the wicked is like deep darkness;
   they do not know what they stumble over.
20 My child, be attentive to my words;
   incline your ear to my sayings.
21 Do not let them escape from your sight;
   keep them within your heart.
22 For they are life to those who find them,
   and healing to all their flesh.
23 Keep your heart with all vigilance,
   for from it flow the springs of life.
24 Put away from you crooked speech,
   and put devious talk far from you.
25 Let your eyes look directly forwards,
   and your gaze be straight before you.
26 Keep straight the path of your feet,
   and all your ways will be sure.
27 Do not swerve to the right or to the left;
   turn your foot away from evil.

Warning against Impurity and Infidelity

5My child, be attentive to my wisdom;
   incline your ear to my understanding,
2 so that you may hold on to prudence,
   and your lips may guard knowledge.
3 For the lips of a loose* woman drip honey,
   and her speech is smoother than oil;
4 but in the end she is bitter as wormwood,
   sharp as a two-edged sword.
5 Her feet go down to death;
   her steps follow the path to Sheol.
6 She does not keep straight to the path of life;
   her ways wander, and she does not know it.


7 And now, my child,* listen to me,
   and do not depart from the words of my mouth.
8 Keep your way far from her,
   and do not go near the door of her house;
9 or you will give your honour to others,
   and your years to the merciless,
10 and strangers will take their fill of your wealth,
   and your labours will go to the house of an alien;
11 and at the end of your life you will groan,
   when your flesh and body are consumed,
12 and you say, ‘Oh, how I hated discipline,
   and my heart despised reproof!
13 I did not listen to the voice of my teachers
   or incline my ear to my instructors.
14 Now I am at the point of utter ruin
   in the public assembly.’


15 Drink water from your own cistern,
   flowing water from your own well.
16 Should your springs be scattered abroad,
   streams of water in the streets?
17 Let them be for yourself alone,
   and not for sharing with strangers.
18 Let your fountain be blessed,
   and rejoice in the wife of your youth,
19   a lovely deer, a graceful doe.
May her breasts satisfy you at all times;
   may you be intoxicated always by her love.
20 Why should you be intoxicated, my son, by another woman
   and embrace the bosom of an adulteress?
21 For human ways are under the eyes of the Lord,
   and he examines all their paths.
22 The iniquities of the wicked ensnare them,
   and they are caught in the toils of their sin.
23 They die for lack of discipline,
   and because of their great folly they are lost.

Practical Admonitions

6My child, if you have given your pledge to your neighbour,
   if you have bound yourself to another,*
2 you are snared by the utterance of your lips,*
   caught by the words of your mouth.
3 So do this, my child, and save yourself,
   for you have come into your neighbour’s power:
   go, hurry,* and plead with your neighbour.
4 Give your eyes no sleep
   and your eyelids no slumber;
5 save yourself like a gazelle from the hunter,*
   like a bird from the hand of the fowler.


6 Go to the ant, you lazybones;
   consider its ways, and be wise.
7 Without having any chief
   or officer or ruler,
8 it prepares its food in summer,
   and gathers its sustenance in harvest.
9 How long will you lie there, O lazybones?
   When will you rise from your sleep?
10 A little sleep, a little slumber,
   a little folding of the hands to rest,
11 and poverty will come upon you like a robber,
   and want, like an armed warrior.


12 A scoundrel and a villain
   goes around with crooked speech,
13 winking the eyes, shuffling the feet,
   pointing the fingers,
14 with perverted mind devising evil,
   continually sowing discord;
15 on such a one calamity will descend suddenly;
   in a moment, damage beyond repair.


16 There are six things that the Lord hates,
   seven that are an abomination to him:
17 haughty eyes, a lying tongue,
   and hands that shed innocent blood,
18 a heart that devises wicked plans,
   feet that hurry to run to evil,
19 a lying witness who testifies falsely,
   and one who sows discord in a family.


20 My child, keep your father’s commandment,
   and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
21 Bind them upon your heart always;
   tie them around your neck.
22 When you walk, they* will lead you;
   when you lie down, they* will watch over you;
   and when you awake, they* will talk with you.
23 For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching a light,
   and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life,
24 to preserve you from the wife of another,*
   from the smooth tongue of the adulteress.
25 Do not desire her beauty in your heart,
   and do not let her capture you with her eyelashes;
26 for a prostitute’s fee is only a loaf of bread,*
   but the wife of another stalks a man’s very life.
27 Can fire be carried in the bosom
   without burning one’s clothes?
28 Or can one walk on hot coals
   without scorching the feet?
29 So is he who sleeps with his neighbour’s wife;
   no one who touches her will go unpunished.
30 Thieves are not despised who steal only
   to satisfy their appetite when they are hungry.
31 Yet if they are caught, they will pay sevenfold;
   they will forfeit all the goods of their house.
32 But he who commits adultery has no sense;
   he who does it destroys himself.
33 He will get wounds and dishonour,
   and his disgrace will not be wiped away.
34 For jealousy arouses a husband’s fury,
   and he shows no restraint when he takes revenge.
35 He will accept no compensation,
   and refuses a bribe no matter how great.

The False Attractions of Adultery

7My child, keep my words
   and store up my commandments with you;
2 keep my commandments and live,
   keep my teachings as the apple of your eye;
3 bind them on your fingers,
   write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 Say to wisdom, ‘You are my sister’,
   and call insight your intimate friend,
5 that they may keep you from the loose* woman,
   from the adulteress with her smooth words.


6 For at the window of my house
   I looked out through my lattice,
7 and I saw among the simple ones,
   I observed among the youths,
   a young man without sense,
8 passing along the street near her corner,
   taking the road to her house
9 in the twilight, in the evening,
   at the time of night and darkness.


10 Then a woman comes towards him,
   decked out like a prostitute, wily of heart.*
11 She is loud and wayward;
   her feet do not stay at home;
12 now in the street, now in the squares,
   and at every corner she lies in wait.
13 She seizes him and kisses him,
   and with impudent face she says to him:
14 ‘I had to offer sacrifices,
   and today I have paid my vows;
15 so now I have come out to meet you,
   to seek you eagerly, and I have found you!
16 I have decked my couch with coverings,
   coloured spreads of Egyptian linen;
17 I have perfumed my bed with myrrh,
   aloes, and cinnamon.
18 Come, let us take our fill of love until morning;
   let us delight ourselves with love.
19 For my husband is not at home;
   he has gone on a long journey.
20 He took a bag of money with him;
   he will not come home until full moon.’


21 With much seductive speech she persuades him;
   with her smooth talk she compels him.
22 Right away he follows her,
   and goes like an ox to the slaughter,
or bounds like a stag towards the trap*
23   until an arrow pierces its entrails.
He is like a bird rushing into a snare,
   not knowing that it will cost him his life.


24 And now, my children, listen to me,
   and be attentive to the words of my mouth.
25 Do not let your hearts turn aside to her ways;
   do not stray into her paths.
26 for many are those she has laid low,
   and numerous are her victims.
27 Her house is the way to Sheol,
   going down to the chambers of death.

The Gifts of Wisdom

8Does not wisdom call,
   and does not understanding raise her voice?
2 On the heights, beside the way,
   at the crossroads she takes her stand;
3 beside the gates in front of the town,
   at the entrance of the portals she cries out:
4 ‘To you, O people, I call,
   and my cry is to all that live.
5 O simple ones, learn prudence;
   acquire intelligence, you who lack it.
6 Hear, for I will speak noble things,
   and from my lips will come what is right;
7 for my mouth will utter truth;
   wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
8 All the words of my mouth are righteous;
   there is nothing twisted or crooked in them.
9 They are all straight to one who understands
   and right to those who find knowledge.
10 Take my instruction instead of silver,
   and knowledge rather than choice gold;
11 for wisdom is better than jewels,
   and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.
12 I, wisdom, live with prudence,*
   and I attain knowledge and discretion.
13 The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil.
Pride and arrogance and the way of evil
   and perverted speech I hate.
14 I have good advice and sound wisdom;
   I have insight, I have strength.
15 By me kings reign,
   and rulers decree what is just;
16 by me rulers rule,
   and nobles, all who govern rightly.
17 I love those who love me,
   and those who seek me diligently find me.
18 Riches and honour are with me,
   enduring wealth and prosperity.
19 My fruit is better than gold, even fine gold,
   and my yield than choice silver.
20 I walk in the way of righteousness,
   along the paths of justice,
21 endowing with wealth those who love me,
   and filling their treasuries.

Wisdom’s Part in Creation


22 The Lord created me at the beginning* of his work,*
   the first of his acts of long ago.
23 Ages ago I was set up,
   at the first, before the beginning of the earth.
24 When there were no depths I was brought forth,
   when there were no springs abounding with water.
25 Before the mountains had been shaped,
   before the hills, I was brought forth—
26 when he had not yet made earth and fields,*
   or the world’s first bits of soil.
27 When he established the heavens, I was there,
   when he drew a circle on the face of the deep,
28 when he made firm the skies above,
   when he established the fountains of the deep,
29 when he assigned to the sea its limit,
   so that the waters might not transgress his command,
when he marked out the foundations of the earth,
30   then I was beside him, like a master worker;*
and I was daily his* delight,
   rejoicing before him always,
31 rejoicing in his inhabited world
   and delighting in the human race.


32 ‘And now, my children, listen to me:
   happy are those who keep my ways.
33 Hear instruction and be wise,
   and do not neglect it.
34 Happy is the one who listens to me,
   watching daily at my gates,
   waiting beside my doors.
35 For whoever finds me finds life
   and obtains favour from the Lord;
36 but those who miss me injure themselves;
   all who hate me love death.’

Wisdom’s Feast

9Wisdom has built her house,
   she has hewn her seven pillars.
2 She has slaughtered her animals, she has mixed her wine,
   she has also set her table.
3 She has sent out her servant-girls, she calls
   from the highest places in the town,
4 ‘You that are simple, turn in here!’
   To those without sense she says,
5 ‘Come, eat of my bread
   and drink of the wine I have mixed.
6 Lay aside immaturity,* and live,
   and walk in the way of insight.’

General Maxims


7 Whoever corrects a scoffer wins abuse;
   whoever rebukes the wicked gets hurt.
8 A scoffer who is rebuked will only hate you;
   the wise, when rebuked, will love you.
9 Give instruction* to the wise, and they will become wiser still;
   teach the righteous and they will gain in learning.
10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
   and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.
11 For by me your days will be multiplied,
   and years will be added to your life.
12 If you are wise, you are wise for yourself;
   if you scoff, you alone will bear it.

Folly’s Invitation and Promise


13 The foolish woman is loud;
   she is ignorant and knows nothing.
14 She sits at the door of her house,
   on a seat at the high places of the town,
15 calling to those who pass by,
   who are going straight on their way,
16 ‘You who are simple, turn in here!’
   And to those without sense she says,
17 ‘Stolen water is sweet,
   and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.’
18 But they do not know that the dead* are there,
   that her guests are in the depths of Sheol.

Wise Sayings of Solomon

10The proverbs of Solomon.


A wise child makes a glad father,
   but a foolish child is a mother’s grief.
2 Treasures gained by wickedness do not profit,
   but righteousness delivers from death.
3 The Lord does not let the righteous go hungry,
   but he thwarts the craving of the wicked.
4 A slack hand causes poverty,
   but the hand of the diligent makes rich.
5 A child who gathers in summer is prudent,
   but a child who sleeps in harvest brings shame.
6 Blessings are on the head of the righteous,
   but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.
7 The memory of the righteous is a blessing,
   but the name of the wicked will rot.
8 The wise of heart will heed commandments,
   but a babbling fool will come to ruin.
9 Whoever walks in integrity walks securely,
   but whoever follows perverse ways will be found out.
10 Whoever winks the eye causes trouble,
   but the one who rebukes boldly makes peace.*
11 The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life,
   but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.
12 Hatred stirs up strife,
   but love covers all offences.
13 On the lips of one who has understanding wisdom is found,
   but a rod is for the back of one who lacks sense.
14 The wise lay up knowledge,
   but the babbling of a fool brings ruin near.
15 The wealth of the rich is their fortress;
   the poverty of the poor is their ruin.
16 The wage of the righteous leads to life,
   the gain of the wicked to sin.
17 Whoever heeds instruction is on the path to life,
   but one who rejects a rebuke goes astray.
18 Lying lips conceal hatred,
   and whoever utters slander is a fool.
19 When words are many, transgression is not lacking,
   but the prudent are restrained in speech.
20 The tongue of the righteous is choice silver;
   the mind of the wicked is of little worth.
21 The lips of the righteous feed many,
   but fools die for lack of sense.
22 The blessing of the Lord makes rich,
   and he adds no sorrow with it.*
23 Doing wrong is like sport to a fool,
   but wise conduct is pleasure to a person of understanding.
24 What the wicked dread will come upon them,
   but the desire of the righteous will be granted.
25 When the tempest passes, the wicked are no more,
   but the righteous are established for ever.
26 Like vinegar to the teeth, and smoke to the eyes,
   so are the lazy to their employers.
27 The fear of the Lord prolongs life,
   but the years of the wicked will be short.
28 The hope of the righteous ends in gladness,
   but the expectation of the wicked comes to nothing.
29 The way of the Lord is a stronghold for the upright,
   but destruction for evildoers.
30 The righteous will never be removed,
   but the wicked will not remain in the land.
31 The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom,
   but the perverse tongue will be cut off.
32 The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable,
   but the mouth of the wicked what is perverse.

11A false balance is an abomination to the Lord,
   but an accurate weight is his delight.
2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace;
   but wisdom is with the humble.
3 The integrity of the upright guides them,
   but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them.
4 Riches do not profit in the day of wrath,
   but righteousness delivers from death.
5 The righteousness of the blameless keeps their ways straight,
   but the wicked fall by their own wickedness.
6 The righteousness of the upright saves them,
   but the treacherous are taken captive by their schemes.
7 When the wicked die, their hope perishes,
   and the expectation of the godless comes to nothing.
8 The righteous are delivered from trouble,
   and the wicked get into it instead.
9 With their mouths the godless would destroy their neighbours,
   but by knowledge the righteous are delivered.
10 When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices;
   and when the wicked perish, there is jubilation.
11 By the blessing of the upright a city is exalted,
   but it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.
12 Whoever belittles another lacks sense,
   but an intelligent person remains silent.
13 A gossip goes about telling secrets,
   but one who is trustworthy in spirit keeps a confidence.
14 Where there is no guidance, a nation* falls,
   but in an abundance of counsellors there is safety.
15 To guarantee loans for a stranger brings trouble,
   but there is safety in refusing to do so.
16 A gracious woman gets honour,
   but she who hates virtue is covered with shame.*
The timid become destitute,*
   but the aggressive gain riches.
17 Those who are kind reward themselves,
   but the cruel do themselves harm.
18 The wicked earn no real gain,
   but those who sow righteousness get a true reward.
19 Whoever is steadfast in righteousness will live,
   but whoever pursues evil will die.
20 Crooked minds are an abomination to the Lord,
   but those of blameless ways are his delight.
21 Be assured, the wicked will not go unpunished,
   but those who are righteous will escape.
22 Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout
   is a beautiful woman without good sense.
23 The desire of the righteous ends only in good;
   the expectation of the wicked in wrath.
24 Some give freely, yet grow all the richer;
   others withhold what is due, and only suffer want.
25 A generous person will be enriched,
   and one who gives water will get water.
26 The people curse those who hold back grain,
   but a blessing is on the head of those who sell it.
27 Whoever diligently seeks good seeks favour,
   but evil comes to the one who searches for it.
28 Those who trust in their riches will wither,*
   but the righteous will flourish like green leaves.
29 Those who trouble their households will inherit wind,
   and the fool will be servant to the wise.
30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life,
   but violence* takes lives away.
31 If the righteous are repaid on earth,
   how much more the wicked and the sinner!

12Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge,
   but those who hate to be rebuked are stupid.
2 The good obtain favour from the Lord,
   but those who devise evil he condemns.
3 No one finds security by wickedness,
   but the root of the righteous will never be moved.
4 A good wife is the crown of her husband,
   but she who brings shame is like rottenness in his bones.
5 The thoughts of the righteous are just;
   the advice of the wicked is treacherous.
6 The words of the wicked are a deadly ambush,
   but the speech of the upright delivers them.
7 The wicked are overthrown and are no more,
   but the house of the righteous will stand.
8 One is commended for good sense,
   but a perverse mind is despised.
9 Better to be despised and have a servant,
   than to be self-important and lack food.
10 The righteous know the needs of their animals,
   but the mercy of the wicked is cruel.
11 Those who till their land will have plenty of food,
   but those who follow worthless pursuits have no sense.
12 The wicked covet the proceeds of wickedness,*
   but the root of the righteous bears fruit.
13 The evil are ensnared by the transgression of their lips,
   but the righteous escape from trouble.
14 From the fruit of the mouth one is filled with good things,
   and manual labour has its reward.
15 Fools think their own way is right,
   but the wise listen to advice.
16 Fools show their anger at once,
   but the prudent ignore an insult.
17 Whoever speaks the truth gives honest evidence,
   but a false witness speaks deceitfully.
18 Rash words are like sword thrusts,
   but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
19 Truthful lips endure for ever,
   but a lying tongue lasts only a moment.
20 Deceit is in the mind of those who plan evil,
   but those who counsel peace have joy.
21 No harm happens to the righteous,
   but the wicked are filled with trouble.
22 Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord,
   but those who act faithfully are his delight.
23 One who is clever conceals knowledge,
   but the mind of a fool* broadcasts folly.
24 The hand of the diligent will rule,
   while the lazy will be put to forced labour.
25 Anxiety weighs down the human heart,
   but a good word cheers it up.
26 The righteous gives good advice to friends,*
   but the way of the wicked leads astray.
27 The lazy do not roast* their game,
   but the diligent obtain precious wealth.*
28 In the path of righteousness there is life,
   in walking its path there is no death.

13A wise child loves discipline,*
   but a scoffer does not listen to rebuke.
2 From the fruit of their words good people eat good things,
   but the desire of the treacherous is for wrongdoing.
3 Those who guard their mouths preserve their lives;
   those who open wide their lips come to ruin.
4 The appetite of the lazy craves, and gets nothing,
   while the appetite of the diligent is richly supplied.
5 The righteous hate falsehood,
   but the wicked act shamefully and disgracefully.
6 Righteousness guards one whose way is upright,
   but sin overthrows the wicked.
7 Some pretend to be rich, yet have nothing;
   others pretend to be poor, yet have great wealth.
8 Wealth is a ransom for a person’s life,
   but the poor get no threats.
9 The light of the righteous rejoices,
   but the lamp of the wicked goes out.
10 By insolence the heedless make strife,
   but wisdom is with those who take advice.
11 Wealth hastily gained* will dwindle,
   but those who gather little by little will increase it.
12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
   but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.
13 Those who despise the word bring destruction on themselves,
   but those who respect the commandment will be rewarded.
14 The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life,
   so that one may avoid the snares of death.
15 Good sense wins favour,
   but the way of the faithless is their ruin.*
16 The clever do all things intelligently,
   but the fool displays folly.
17 A bad messenger brings trouble,
   but a faithful envoy, healing.
18 Poverty and disgrace are for the one who ignores instruction,
   but one who heeds reproof is honoured.
19 A desire realized is sweet to the soul,
   but to turn away from evil is an abomination to fools.
20 Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise,
   but the companion of fools suffers harm.
21 Misfortune pursues sinners,
   but prosperity rewards the righteous.
22 The good leave an inheritance to their children’s children,
   but the sinner’s wealth is laid up for the righteous.
23 The field of the poor may yield much food,
   but it is swept away through injustice.
24 Those who spare the rod hate their children,
   but those who love them are diligent to discipline them.
25 The righteous have enough to satisfy their appetite,
   but the belly of the wicked is empty.

14The wise woman* builds her house,
   but the foolish tears it down with her own hands.
2 Those who walk uprightly fear the Lord,
   but one who is devious in conduct despises him.
3 The talk of fools is a rod for their backs,*
   but the lips of the wise preserve them.
4 Where there are no oxen, there is no grain;
   abundant crops come by the strength of the ox.
5 A faithful witness does not lie,
   but a false witness breathes out lies.
6 A scoffer seeks wisdom in vain,
   but knowledge is easy for one who understands.
7 Leave the presence of a fool,
   for there you do not find words of knowledge.
8 It is the wisdom of the clever to understand where they go,
   but the folly of fools misleads.
9 Fools mock at the guilt-offering,*
   but the upright enjoy God’s favour.
10 The heart knows its own bitterness,
   and no stranger shares its joy.
11 The house of the wicked is destroyed,
   but the tent of the upright flourishes.
12 There is a way that seems right to a person,
   but its end is the way to death.*
13 Even in laughter the heart is sad,
   and the end of joy is grief.
14 The perverse get what their ways deserve,
   and the good, what their deeds deserve.*
15 The simple believe everything,
   but the clever consider their steps.
16 The wise are cautious and turn away from evil,
   but the fool throws off restraint and is careless.
17 One who is quick-tempered acts foolishly,
   and the schemer is hated.
18 The simple are adorned with* folly,
   but the clever are crowned with knowledge.
19 The evil bow down before the good,
   the wicked at the gates of the righteous.
20 The poor are disliked even by their neighbours,
   but the rich have many friends.
21 Those who despise their neighbours are sinners,
   but happy are those who are kind to the poor.
22 Do they not err that plan evil?
   Those who plan good find loyalty and faithfulness.
23 In all toil there is profit,
   but mere talk leads only to poverty.
24 The crown of the wise is their wisdom,*
   but folly is the garland* of fools.
25 A truthful witness saves lives,
   but one who utters lies is a betrayer.
26 In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence,
   and one’s children will have a refuge.
27 The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,
   so that one may avoid the snares of death.
28 The glory of a king is a multitude of people;
   without people a prince is ruined.
29 Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding,
   but one who has a hasty temper exalts folly.
30 A tranquil mind gives life to the flesh,
   but passion makes the bones rot.
31 Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker,
   but those who are kind to the needy honour him.
32 The wicked are overthrown by their evildoing,
   but the righteous find a refuge in their integrity.*
33 Wisdom is at home in the mind of one who has understanding,
   but it is not* known in the heart of fools.
34 Righteousness exalts a nation,
   but sin is a reproach to any people.
35 A servant who deals wisely has the king’s favour,
   but his wrath falls on one who acts shamefully.

15A soft answer turns away wrath,
   but a harsh word stirs up anger.
2 The tongue of the wise dispenses knowledge,*
   but the mouths of fools pour out folly.
3 The eyes of the Lord are in every place,
   keeping watch on the evil and the good.
4 A gentle tongue is a tree of life,
   but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.
5 A fool despises a parent’s instruction,
   but the one who heeds admonition is prudent.
6 In the house of the righteous there is much treasure,
   but trouble befalls the income of the wicked.
7 The lips of the wise spread knowledge;
   not so the minds of fools.
8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
   but the prayer of the upright is his delight.
9 The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
   but he loves the one who pursues righteousness.
10 There is severe discipline for one who forsakes the way,
   but one who hates a rebuke will die.
11 Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the Lord,
   how much more human hearts!
12 Scoffers do not like to be rebuked;
   they will not go to the wise.
13 A glad heart makes a cheerful countenance,
   but by sorrow of heart the spirit is broken.
14 The mind of one who has understanding seeks knowledge,
   but the mouths of fools feed on folly.
15 All the days of the poor are hard,
   but a cheerful heart has a continual feast.
16 Better is a little with the fear of the Lord
   than great treasure and trouble with it.
17 Better is a dinner of vegetables where love is
   than a fatted ox and hatred with it.
18 Those who are hot-tempered stir up strife,
   but those who are slow to anger calm contention.
19 The way of the lazy is overgrown with thorns,
   but the path of the upright is a level highway.
20 A wise child makes a glad father,
   but the foolish despise their mothers.
21 Folly is a joy to one who has no sense,
   but a person of understanding walks straight ahead.
22 Without counsel, plans go wrong,
   but with many advisers they succeed.
23 To make an apt answer is a joy to anyone,
   and a word in season, how good it is!
24 For the wise the path of life leads upwards,
   in order to avoid Sheol below.
25 The Lord tears down the house of the proud,
   but maintains the widow’s boundaries.
26 Evil plans are an abomination to the Lord,
   but gracious words are pure.
27 Those who are greedy for unjust gain make trouble for their households,
   but those who hate bribes will live.
28 The mind of the righteous ponders how to answer,
   but the mouth of the wicked pours out evil.
29 The Lord is far from the wicked,
   but he hears the prayer of the righteous.
30 The light of the eyes rejoices the heart,
   and good news refreshes the body.
31 The ear that heeds wholesome admonition
   will lodge among the wise.
32 Those who ignore instruction despise themselves,
   but those who heed admonition gain understanding.
33 The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom,
   and humility goes before honour.

16The plans of the mind belong to mortals,
   but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.
2 All one’s ways may be pure in one’s own eyes,
   but the Lord weighs the spirit.
3 Commit your work to the Lord,
   and your plans will be established.
4 The Lord has made everything for its purpose,
   even the wicked for the day of trouble.
5 All those who are arrogant are an abomination to the Lord;
   be assured, they will not go unpunished.
6 By loyalty and faithfulness iniquity is atoned for,
   and by the fear of the Lord one avoids evil.
7 When the ways of people please the Lord,
   he causes even their enemies to be at peace with them.
8 Better is a little with righteousness
   than large income with injustice.
9 The human mind plans the way,
   but the Lord directs the steps.
10 Inspired decisions are on the lips of a king;
   his mouth does not sin in judgement.
11 Honest balances and scales are the Lord’s;
   all the weights in the bag are his work.
12 It is an abomination to kings to do evil,
   for the throne is established by righteousness.
13 Righteous lips are the delight of a king,
   and he loves those who speak what is right.
14 A king’s wrath is a messenger of death,
   and whoever is wise will appease it.
15 In the light of a king’s face there is life,
   and his favour is like the clouds that bring the spring rain.
16 How much better to get wisdom than gold!
   To get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.
17 The highway of the upright avoids evil;
   those who guard their way preserve their lives.


For copyright reasons, a maximum of 457 verses may be displayed. A further 460 verses have been omitted.

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oremus Bible Browser
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v 2.2.7
10 February 2011

From the oremus Bible Browser http://bible.oremus.org v2.2.7 10 February 2011.