Ecclesiastes 9:13-10:11New International Version (NIV)
Wisdom Better Than Folly
13 I also saw under the sun this example of wisdom that greatly impressed me:14 There was once a small city with only a few people in it. And a powerful king came against it, surrounded it and built huge siege works against it.15 Now there lived in that city a man poor but wise, and he saved the city by his wisdom. But nobody remembered that poor man.16 So I said, “Wisdom is better than strength.” But the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are no longer heeded.
17 The quiet words of the wise are more to be heeded than the shouts of a ruler of fools. 18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war, but one sinner destroys much good.
10 As dead flies give perfume a bad smell, so a little folly outweighs wisdom and honor. 2 The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left. 3 Even as fools walk along the road, they lack sense and show everyone how stupid they are. 4 If a ruler’s anger rises against you, do not leave your post; calmness can lay great offenses to rest.
5 There is an evil I have seen under the sun, the sort of error that arises from a ruler: 6 Fools are put in many high positions, while the rich occupy the low ones. 7 I have seen slaves on horseback, while princes go on foot like slaves.
8 Whoever digs a pit may fall into it; whoever breaks through a wall may be bitten by a snake. 9 Whoever quarries stones may be injured by them; whoever splits logs may be endangered by them.
10 If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed, but skill will bring success.
11 If a snake bites before it is charmed, the charmer receives no fee.
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