New International Version
25 Let your eyes(A) look straight ahead;
fix your gaze directly before you.
26 Give careful thought to the[a] paths for your feet(B)
and be steadfast in all your ways.
27 Do not turn to the right or the left;(C)
keep your foot from evil.
Warning Against Adultery
5 My son,(D) pay attention to my wisdom,
turn your ear to my words(E) of insight,
2 that you may maintain discretion
and your lips may preserve knowledge.
3 For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey,
and her speech is smoother than oil;(F)
4 but in the end she is bitter as gall,(G)
sharp as a double-edged sword.
5 Her feet go down to death;
her steps lead straight to the grave.(H)
6 She gives no thought to the way of life;
her paths wander aimlessly, but she does not know it.(I)
7 Now then, my sons, listen(J) to me;
do not turn aside from what I say.
8 Keep to a path far from her,(K)
do not go near the door of her house,
9 lest you lose your honor to others
and your dignity[b] to one who is cruel,
10 lest strangers feast on your wealth
and your toil enrich the house of another.(L)
11 At the end of your life you will groan,
when your flesh and body are spent.
12 You will say, “How I hated discipline!
How my heart spurned correction!(M)
13 I would not obey my teachers
or turn my ear to my instructors.
14 And I was soon in serious trouble(N)
in the assembly of God’s people.”(O)
15 Drink water from your own cistern,
running water from your own well.
16 Should your springs overflow in the streets,
your streams of water in the public squares?
17 Let them be yours alone,
never to be shared with strangers.
18 May your fountain(P) be blessed,
and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.(Q)
19 A loving doe, a graceful deer(R)—
may her breasts satisfy you always,
may you ever be intoxicated with her love.
20 Why, my son, be intoxicated with another man’s wife?
Why embrace the bosom of a wayward woman?
21 For your ways are in full view(S) of the Lord,
and he examines(T) all your paths.(U)
22 The evil deeds of the wicked ensnare them;(V)
the cords of their sins hold them fast.(W)
23 For lack of discipline they will die,(X)
led astray by their own great folly.(Y)
Warnings Against Folly
6 My son,(Z) if you have put up security(AA) for your neighbor,(AB)
if you have shaken hands in pledge(AC) for a stranger,
2 you have been trapped by what you said,
ensnared by the words of your mouth.
3 So do this, my son, to free yourself,
since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands:
Go—to the point of exhaustion—[c]
and give your neighbor no rest!
4 Allow no sleep to your eyes,
no slumber to your eyelids.(AD)
5 Free yourself, like a gazelle(AE) from the hand of the hunter,(AF)
like a bird from the snare of the fowler.(AG)
9 How long will you lie there, you sluggard?(AK)
When will you get up from your sleep?
10 A little sleep, a little slumber,
a little folding of the hands to rest(AL)—
11 and poverty(AM) will come on you like a thief
and scarcity like an armed man.
12 A troublemaker and a villain,
who goes about with a corrupt mouth,
13 who winks maliciously with his eye,(AN)
signals with his feet
and motions with his fingers,(AO)
14 who plots evil(AP) with deceit in his heart—
he always stirs up conflict.(AQ)
15 Therefore disaster will overtake him in an instant;(AR)
he will suddenly(AS) be destroyed—without remedy.(AT)
16 There are six things the Lord hates,(AU)
seven that are detestable to him:
17 haughty eyes,(AV)
a lying tongue,(AW)
hands that shed innocent blood,(AX)
18 a heart that devises wicked schemes,
feet that are quick to rush into evil,(AY)
19 a false witness(AZ) who pours out lies(BA)
and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.(BB)
Warning Against Adultery
20 My son,(BC) keep your father’s command
and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.(BD)
21 Bind them always on your heart;
fasten them around your neck.(BE)
22 When you walk, they will guide you;
when you sleep, they will watch over you;
when you awake, they will speak to you.
23 For this command is a lamp,
this teaching is a light,(BF)
and correction and instruction
are the way to life,(BG)
24 keeping you from your neighbor’s wife,
from the smooth talk of a wayward woman.(BH)
25 Do not lust in your heart after her beauty
or let her captivate you with her eyes.
26 For a prostitute can be had for a loaf of bread,
but another man’s wife preys on your very life.(BI)
27 Can a man scoop fire into his lap
without his clothes being burned?
28 Can a man walk on hot coals
without his feet being scorched?
29 So is he who sleeps(BJ) with another man’s wife;(BK)
no one who touches her will go unpunished.
30 People do not despise a thief if he steals
to satisfy his hunger when he is starving.
31 Yet if he is caught, he must pay sevenfold,(BL)
though it costs him all the wealth of his house.
32 But a man who commits adultery(BM) has no sense;(BN)
whoever does so destroys himself.
33 Blows and disgrace are his lot,
and his shame will never(BO) be wiped away.
Warning Against the Adulterous Woman
7 My son,(BS) keep my words
and store up my commands within you.
2 Keep my commands and you will live;(BT)
guard my teachings as the apple of your eye.
3 Bind them on your fingers;
write them on the tablet of your heart.(BU)
4 Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,”
and to insight, “You are my relative.”
5 They will keep you from the adulterous woman,
from the wayward woman with her seductive words.(BV)
6 At the window of my house
I looked down through the lattice.
7 I saw among the simple,
I noticed among the young men,
a youth who had no sense.(BW)
8 He was going down the street near her corner,
walking along in the direction of her house
9 at twilight,(BX) as the day was fading,
as the dark of night set in.
10 Then out came a woman to meet him,
dressed like a prostitute and with crafty intent.
11 (She is unruly(BY) and defiant,
her feet never stay at home;
12 now in the street, now in the squares,
at every corner she lurks.)(BZ)
13 She took hold of him(CA) and kissed him
and with a brazen face she said:(CB)
14 “Today I fulfilled my vows,
and I have food from my fellowship offering(CC) at home.
15 So I came out to meet you;
I looked for you and have found you!
16 I have covered my bed
with colored linens from Egypt.
17 I have perfumed my bed(CD)
with myrrh,(CE) aloes and cinnamon.
18 Come, let’s drink deeply of love till morning;
let’s enjoy ourselves with love!(CF)
19 My husband is not at home;
he has gone on a long journey.
20 He took his purse filled with money
and will not be home till full moon.”
21 With persuasive words she led him astray;
she seduced him with her smooth talk.(CG)
22 All at once he followed her
like an ox going to the slaughter,
like a deer[d] stepping into a noose[e](CH)
23 till an arrow pierces(CI) his liver,
like a bird darting into a snare,
little knowing it will cost him his life.(CJ)
24 Now then, my sons, listen(CK) to me;
pay attention to what I say.
25 Do not let your heart turn to her ways
or stray into her paths.(CL)
26 Many are the victims she has brought down;
her slain are a mighty throng.
27 Her house is a highway to the grave,
leading down to the chambers of death.(CM)
8 Does not wisdom call out?(CN)
Does not understanding raise her voice?
2 At the highest point along the way,
where the paths meet, she takes her stand;
3 beside the gate leading into the city,
at the entrance, she cries aloud:(CO)
4 “To you, O people, I call out;(CP)
I raise my voice to all mankind.
5 You who are simple,(CQ) gain prudence;(CR)
you who are foolish, set your hearts on it.[f]
6 Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say;
I open my lips to speak what is right.
7 My mouth speaks what is true,(CS)
for my lips detest wickedness.
8 All the words of my mouth are just;
none of them is crooked or perverse.
9 To the discerning all of them are right;
they are upright to those who have found knowledge.
10 Choose my instruction instead of silver,
knowledge rather than choice gold,(CT)
11 for wisdom is more precious(CU) than rubies,
and nothing you desire can compare with her.(CV)
12 “I, wisdom, dwell together with prudence;
I possess knowledge and discretion.(CW)
13 To fear the Lord(CX) is to hate evil;(CY)
I hate(CZ) pride and arrogance,
evil behavior and perverse speech.
14 Counsel and sound judgment are mine;
I have insight, I have power.(DA)
15 By me kings reign
and rulers(DB) issue decrees that are just;
16 by me princes govern,(DC)
and nobles—all who rule on earth.[g]
17 I love those who love me,(DD)
and those who seek me find me.(DE)
18 With me are riches and honor,(DF)
enduring wealth and prosperity.(DG)
19 My fruit is better than fine gold;(DH)
what I yield surpasses choice silver.(DI)
20 I walk in the way of righteousness,(DJ)
along the paths of justice,
21 bestowing a rich inheritance on those who love me
and making their treasuries full.(DK)
22 “The Lord brought me forth as the first of his works,[h][i]
before his deeds of old;
23 I was formed long ages ago,
at the very beginning, when the world came to be.
24 When there were no watery depths, I was given birth,
when there were no springs overflowing with water;(DL)
25 before the mountains were settled in place,(DM)
before the hills, I was given birth,(DN)
26 before he made the world or its fields
or any of the dust of the earth.(DO)
27 I was there when he set the heavens in place,(DP)
when he marked out the horizon(DQ) on the face of the deep,
28 when he established the clouds above(DR)
and fixed securely the fountains of the deep,(DS)
29 when he gave the sea its boundary(DT)
so the waters would not overstep his command,(DU)
and when he marked out the foundations of the earth.(DV)
30 Then I was constantly[j] at his side.(DW)
I was filled with delight day after day,
rejoicing always in his presence,
31 rejoicing in his whole world
and delighting in mankind.(DX)
32 “Now then, my children, listen(DY) to me;
blessed are(DZ) those who keep my ways.(EA)
33 Listen to my instruction and be wise;
do not disregard it.
34 Blessed are those who listen(EB) to me,
watching daily at my doors,
waiting at my doorway.
35 For those who find me(EC) find life(ED)
and receive favor from the Lord.(EE)
36 But those who fail to find me harm themselves;(EF)
all who hate me love death.”(EG)
Invitations of Wisdom and Folly
9 Wisdom has built(EH) her house;
she has set up[k] its seven pillars.
2 She has prepared her meat and mixed her wine;(EI)
she has also set her table.(EJ)
3 She has sent out her servants, and she calls(EK)
from the highest point of the city,(EL)
4 “Let all who are simple(EM) come to my house!”
To those who have no sense(EN) she says,
5 “Come,(EO) eat my food
and drink the wine I have mixed.(EP)
6 Leave your simple ways and you will live;(EQ)
walk in the way of insight.”(ER)
7 Whoever corrects a mocker invites insults;
whoever rebukes the wicked incurs abuse.(ES)
8 Do not rebuke mockers(ET) or they will hate you;
rebuke the wise and they will love you.(EU)
9 Instruct the wise and they will be wiser still;
teach the righteous and they will add to their learning.(EV)
10 The fear of the Lord(EW) is the beginning of wisdom,
and knowledge of the Holy One(EX) is understanding.(EY)
11 For through wisdom[l] your days will be many,
and years will be added to your life.(EZ)
12 If you are wise, your wisdom will reward you;
if you are a mocker, you alone will suffer.
13 Folly is an unruly woman;(FA)
she is simple and knows nothing.(FB)
14 She sits at the door of her house,
on a seat at the highest point of the city,(FC)
15 calling out(FD) to those who pass by,
who go straight on their way,
16 “Let all who are simple come to my house!”
To those who have no sense(FE) she says,
17 “Stolen water is sweet;
food eaten in secret is delicious!(FF)”
18 But little do they know that the dead are there,
that her guests are deep in the realm of the dead.(FG)
Proverbs of Solomon
A wise son brings joy to his father,(FJ)
but a foolish son brings grief to his mother.
5 He who gathers crops in summer is a prudent son,
but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son.(FQ)
8 The wise in heart accept commands,
but a chattering fool comes to ruin.(FV)
10 Whoever winks maliciously(FZ) causes grief,
and a chattering fool comes to ruin.
12 Hatred stirs up conflict,
but love covers over all wrongs.(GC)
17 Whoever heeds discipline shows the way to life,(GL)
but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.
18 Whoever conceals hatred with lying lips(GM)
and spreads slander is a fool.
19 Sin is not ended by multiplying words,
but the prudent hold their tongues.(GN)
20 The tongue of the righteous is choice silver,
but the heart of the wicked is of little value.
21 The lips of the righteous nourish many,
but fools die for lack of sense.(GO)
23 A fool finds pleasure in wicked schemes,(GS)
but a person of understanding delights in wisdom.
28 The prospect of the righteous is joy,
but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing.(HC)
29 The way of the Lord is a refuge for the blameless,
but it is the ruin of those who do evil.(HD)
30 The righteous will never be uprooted,
but the wicked will not remain in the land.(HE)
3 The integrity of the upright guides them,
but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.(HN)
6 The righteousness of the upright delivers them,
but the unfaithful are trapped by evil desires.(HT)
8 The righteous person is rescued from trouble,
and it falls on the wicked instead.(HW)
9 With their mouths the godless destroy their neighbors,
but through knowledge the righteous escape.(HX)
16 A kindhearted woman gains honor,(IK)
but ruthless men gain only wealth.
17 Those who are kind benefit themselves,
but the cruel bring ruin on themselves.
18 A wicked person earns deceptive wages,
but the one who sows righteousness reaps a sure reward.(IL)
21 Be sure of this: The wicked will not go unpunished,
but those who are righteous will go free.(IR)
22 Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout
is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion.
23 The desire of the righteous ends only in good,
but the hope of the wicked only in wrath.
24 One person gives freely, yet gains even more;
another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.
26 People curse the one who hoards grain,
but they pray God’s blessing on the one who is willing to sell.
27 Whoever seeks good finds favor,
but evil comes to one who searches for it.(IU)
29 Whoever brings ruin on their family will inherit only wind,
and the fool will be servant to the wise.(IX)
30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life,(IY)
and the one who is wise saves lives.
31 If the righteous receive their due(IZ) on earth,
how much more the ungodly and the sinner!
12 Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge,
but whoever hates correction is stupid.(JA)
3 No one can be established through wickedness,
but the righteous cannot be uprooted.(JD)
5 The plans of the righteous are just,
but the advice of the wicked is deceitful.
6 The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood,
but the speech of the upright rescues them.(JG)
8 A person is praised according to their prudence,
and one with a warped(JJ) mind is despised.
9 Better to be a nobody and yet have a servant
than pretend to be somebody and have no food.
10 The righteous care for the needs of their animals,(JK)
but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.
11 Those who work their land will have abundant food,
but those who chase fantasies have no sense.(JL)
12 The wicked desire the stronghold of evildoers,
but the root of the righteous endures.
17 An honest witness tells the truth,
but a false witness tells lies.(JV)
19 Truthful lips endure forever,
but a lying tongue lasts only a moment.
20 Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil,
but those who promote peace have joy.(JY)
21 No harm overtakes the righteous,(JZ)
but the wicked have their fill of trouble.
24 Diligent hands will rule,
but laziness ends in forced labor.(KF)
25 Anxiety weighs down the heart,(KG)
but a kind word cheers it up.
26 The righteous choose their friends carefully,
but the way of the wicked leads them astray.(KH)
27 The lazy do not roast[p] any game,
but the diligent feed on the riches of the hunt.
28 In the way of righteousness there is life;(KI)
along that path is immortality.
13 A wise son heeds his father’s instruction,
but a mocker does not respond to rebukes.(KJ)
2 From the fruit of their lips people enjoy good things,(KK)
but the unfaithful have an appetite for violence.
4 A sluggard’s appetite is never filled,(KO)
but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.
5 The righteous hate what is false,(KP)
but the wicked make themselves a stench
and bring shame on themselves.
6 Righteousness guards the person of integrity,
but wickedness overthrows the sinner.(KQ)
8 A person’s riches may ransom their life,
but the poor cannot respond to threatening rebukes.(KT)
9 The light of the righteous shines brightly,
but the lamp of the wicked is snuffed out.(KU)
10 Where there is strife, there is pride,
but wisdom is found in those who take advice.(KV)
11 Dishonest money dwindles away,(KW)
but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow.
12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.(KX)
15 Good judgment wins favor,
but the way of the unfaithful leads to their destruction.[q]
- Proverbs 4:26 Or Make level
- Proverbs 5:9 Or years
- Proverbs 6:3 Or Go and humble yourself,
- Proverbs 7:22 Syriac (see also Septuagint); Hebrew fool
- Proverbs 7:22 The meaning of the Hebrew for this line is uncertain.
- Proverbs 8:5 Septuagint; Hebrew foolish, instruct your minds
- Proverbs 8:16 Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint; other Hebrew manuscripts all righteous rulers
- Proverbs 8:22 Or way; or dominion
- Proverbs 8:22 Or The Lord possessed me at the beginning of his work; or The Lord brought me forth at the beginning of his work
- Proverbs 8:30 Or was the artisan; or was a little child
- Proverbs 9:1 Septuagint, Syriac and Targum; Hebrew has hewn out
- Proverbs 9:11 Septuagint, Syriac and Targum; Hebrew me
- Proverbs 10:6 Or righteous, / but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence
- Proverbs 10:7 See Gen. 48:20.
- Proverbs 11:7 Two Hebrew manuscripts; most Hebrew manuscripts, Vulgate, Syriac and Targum When the wicked die, their hope perishes; / all they expected from
- Proverbs 12:27 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
- Proverbs 13:15 Septuagint and Syriac; the meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain.
- Proverbs 13:16 Or prudent protect themselves through