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Better to be Poor with Integrity

19 Better to be poor, walking with integrity,
than be a fool whose lips are corrupt.
Zeal without knowledge is not good,[a]
or to act hastily and miss the way.
A man’s folly undermines his way,
and his heart rages against Adonai.
Wealth adds many friends,
yet a poor man is deserted by his friend.
A false witness will not go unpunished,
one who breathes lies will not escape.
Many seek the favor of the generous.
Everyone is a friend to a giver of gifts.
All a poor man’s relatives despise him—
how much more his friends avoid him.
He pursues them with words, but they are not there.
One who gets wisdom loves his own soul.
One who treasures understanding prospers.
A false witness will not go unpunished,
and one who breathes lies will perish.
10 Luxury is not fitting for a fool—
how much less for a servant to rule over princes!

Watch Your Temper

11 Prudence makes one slow to anger
and his glory is to overlook an offense.
12 A king’s wrath is like a roaring lion,
but his favor is like dew on the grass.

13 A foolish son is trouble for his father,
and a quarrelsome wife is constant dripping.
14 House and wealth are an inheritance from fathers,
but a prudent wife is from Adonai.

15 Laziness brings on deep sleep,
and an idle soul will starve.
16 One who keeps a mitzvah guards his soul,
but one who neglects His ways will die.

17 One who is kind to the poor lends to Adonai,
and Adonai will reward him for his good deed.

18 Discipline your son while there is hope.
Do not set your heart on his death.

19 One with great rage will pay a penalty.
For if you rescue him, you will have to do it again.

Listen to Wise Counsel

20 Listen to advice and accept instruction,
so that in the end you may be wise.
21 Many are the plans in a man’s heart,
but the counsel of Adonai will stand.
22 What is desired in a man is loyalty,
and a poor person is better than a liar.
23 The fear of Adonai leads to life,
and he who has it rests satisfied, untouched by harm.

Sluggards, Scoffers, and Disgraceful Sons

24 The slacker buries his hand in a bowl
and will not even bring it back to his mouth!
25 Strike a scoffer and the naïve will learn caution.
rebuke a discerning person and he will gain knowledge.
26 He who robs his father and drives away his mother
    is a son who brings shame and disgrace!
27 My son, if you stop heeding instruction,
you will stray from words of knowledge.
28 A crooked witness scorns justice,
and a wicked mouth devours iniquity.
29 Judgments are prepared for scoffers,
and floggings for the back of fools.


  1. Proverbs 19:2 cf. Rom. 10:2.