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Beware Seduction

My son, pay attention to my wisdom.

Incline your ear to my insight,
that you may maintain discretion
and your lips may preserve knowledge.
For a seducing woman’s lips drip honey
and her mouth is smoother than oil.
But in the end she is bitter as wormwood,
sharp as a double-edged sword.
Her feet go down to death,
her steps lead straight to Sheol.
She does not keep straight to the path of life,
her paths are crooked
—but she does not know it.
So now, my sons, listen to me
and do not turn aside from the words of my mouth.
Keep your path far from her
and do not go near the door of her house—
lest you give your strength to others
    and your years to one who is cruel;
10 lest strangers feast on your strength,
    your labors go to a foreigner’s house.
11 At the end of your life, you will groan,
when your flesh and body are spent—
12 and you will say, “How I hated discipline!
How my heart spurned reproof!
13 I would not listen to my teacher’s voice
or incline my ear to my instructors.
14 I was almost in utter ruin amid
the community and congregation.”
15 Drink water from your own cistern
and running water from your own well.
16 Should your springs flow in the streets,
your streams of water in public squares?
17 Let them be yours alone
and not shared with strangers.
18 May your fountain be blessed
and may you delight in the wife of your youth.
19 A lovely hind, a graceful doe—
may her breasts satisfy you always,
may you always be captivated by her love.
20 Why, my son, be captivated by a seducing woman?
Why embrace a foreigner’s bosom?

21 For a man’s ways are before the eyes of Adonai,
and He observes all his paths.
22 The iniquities of a wicked man will ensnare him.
The cords of his sin will hold him down.
23 He will die for lack of discipline,
led astray by his own great folly.