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Thorns and snares are on the path of the crooked;
    those who would safeguard their lives will avoid them.
Train the young in the way they should go;
    even when old, they will not swerve from it.[a]
The rich rule over the poor,
    and the borrower is the slave of the lender.[b]

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Footnotes

  1. 22:6 One of the few exhortations in the collection (cf. 14:7; 16:3; 19:18, 20). “Way” in the first colon has been taken in two different senses: (1) the morally right way, “according to the way one ought to go”; (2) personal aptitude, i.e., the manner of life for which one is destined, as “the way of Egypt” (Is 10:24). Neither interpretation, however, accounts for the pronoun in the Hebrew phrase, lit., “his own way.” The most natural solution is to take the whole as ironic advice (like 19:27): yes, go ahead and let the young do exactly what they want; they will become self-willed adults.
  2. 22:7 An observation on money and power. One who borrows becomes poor in the sense of indebted, a slave to the lender.

In the paths of the wicked are snares and pitfalls,(A)
    but those who would preserve their life stay far from them.

Start(B) children off on the way they should go,(C)
    and even when they are old they will not turn from it.(D)

The rich rule over the poor,
    and the borrower is slave to the lender.

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