5 The wise will pay attention to these words and will grow in learning,
and the discerning will receive divine guidance,
6 And they will be able to interpret the meaning of a proverb and a puzzle,
the twists and turns in the words of the wise and their riddles.
A strategic translation decision has been made to respect the historical situation of this book. In its original context, Proverbs is practical wisdom passed down from parents (especially fathers, see chapters 1–9) to young men who are preparing to enter a life of adult responsibilities: family, business, community leadership, and so on. Because of this relational aspect, we have retained masculine references when appropriate and have used more inclusive language when that was the intention of the original author. It is our greatest hope that God will use this work to remind fathers of the profound place they have in nurturing, instructing, and guiding the next generation.
7 Let us begin. The worship of the Eternal One, the one True God, is the first step toward knowledge.
Fools, however, do not fear God and cannot stand wisdom or guidance.