7 My son, keep my words and treasure up my commandments with you; 2 keep my commandments and live; keep my teaching as the apple of your eye; 3 bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,” and call insight your intimate friend, 5 to keep you from the forbidden[a] woman, from the adulteress[b] with her smooth words.
6 For at the window of my house I have looked out through my lattice, 7 and I have seen among the simple, I have perceived among the youths, a young man lacking sense, 8 passing along the street near her corner, taking the road to her house 9 in the twilight, in the evening, at the time of night and darkness.
10 And behold, the woman meets him, dressed as a prostitute, wily of heart.[c] 11 She is loud and wayward; her feet do not stay at home; 12 now in the street, now in the market, and at every corner she lies in wait. 13 She seizes him and kisses him, and with bold face she says to him, 14 “I had to offer sacrifices,[d] and today I have paid my vows; 15 so now I have come out to meet you, to seek you eagerly, and I have found you. 16 I have spread my couch with coverings, colored linens from Egyptian linen; 17 I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. 18 Come, let us take our fill of love till morning; let us delight ourselves with love. 19 For my husband is not at home; he has gone on a long journey; 20 he took a bag of money with him; at full moon he will come home.”
21 With much seductive speech she persuades him; with her smooth talk she compels him. 22 All at once he follows her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a stag is caught fast[e] 23 till an arrow pierces its liver; as a bird rushes into a snare; he does not know that it will cost him his life.
24 And now, O sons, listen to me, and be attentive to the words of my mouth. 25 Let not your heart turn aside to her ways; do not stray into her paths, 26 for many a victim has she laid low, and all her slain are a mighty throng. 27 Her house is the way to Sheol, going down to the chambers of death.
The Blessings of Wisdom
8 Does not wisdom call? Does not understanding raise her voice? 2 On the heights beside the way, at the crossroads she takes her stand; 3 beside the gates in front of the town, at the entrance of the portals she cries aloud: 4 “To you, O men, I call, and my cry is to the children of man. 5 O simple ones, learn prudence; O fools, learn sense. 6 Hear, for I will speak noble things, and from my lips will come what is right, 7 for my mouth will utter truth; wickedness is an abomination to my lips. 8 All the words of my mouth are righteous; there is nothing twisted or crooked in them. 9 They are all straight to him who understands, and right to those who find knowledge. 10 Take my instruction instead of silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold, 11 for wisdom is better than jewels, and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.
12 “I, wisdom, dwell with prudence, and I find knowledge and discretion. 13 The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil. Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate. 14 I have counsel and sound wisdom; I have insight; I have strength. 15 By me kings reign, and rulers decree what is just; 16 by me princes rule, and nobles, all who govern justly.[f] 17 I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently find me. 18 Riches and honor are with me, enduring wealth and righteousness. 19 My fruit is better than gold, even fine gold, and my yield than choice silver. 20 I walk in the way of righteousness, in the paths of justice, 21 granting an inheritance to those who love me, and filling their treasuries.
22 “The Lordpossessed[g] me at the beginning of his work,[h] the first of his acts of old. 23 Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the earth. 24 When there were no depths I was brought forth, when there were no springs abounding with water. 25 Before the mountains had been shaped, before the hills, I was brought forth, 26 before he had made the earth with its fields, or the first of the dust of the world. 27 When he established the heavens, I was there; when he drew a circle on the face of the deep, 28 when he made firm the skies above, when he established[i] the fountains of the deep, 29 when he assigned to the sea its limit, so that the waters might not transgress his command, when he marked out the foundations of the earth, 30 then I was beside him, like a master workman, and I was daily his[j]delight, rejoicing before him always, 31 rejoicing in his inhabited world and delighting in the children of man.
32 “And now, O sons, listen to me: blessed are those who keep my ways. 33 Hear instruction and be wise, and do not neglect it. 34 Blessed is the one who listens to me, watching daily at my gates, waiting beside my doors. 35 For whoever finds me finds life and obtains favor from the Lord, 36 but he who fails to find me injures himself; all who hate me love death.”
The Way of Wisdom
9 Wisdom has built her house; she has hewn her seven pillars. 2 She has slaughtered her beasts; she has mixed her wine; she has also set her table. 3 She has sent out her young women to call from the highest places in the town, 4 “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!” To him who lacks sense she says, 5 “Come, eat of my bread and drink of the wine I have mixed. 6 Leave your simple ways,[k] and live, and walk in the way of insight.”
7 Whoever corrects a scoffer gets himself abuse, and he who reproves a wicked man incurs injury. 8 Do not reprove a scoffer, or he will hate you; reprove a wise man, and he will love you. 9 Give instruction[l] to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning. 10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight. 11 For by me your days will be multiplied, and years will be added to your life. 12 If you are wise, you are wise for yourself; if you scoff, you alone will bear it.
The Way of Folly
13 The woman Folly is loud; she is seductive[m] and knows nothing. 14 She sits at the door of her house; she takes a seat on the highest places of the town, 15 calling to those who pass by, who are going straight on their way, 16 “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!” And to him who lacks sense she says, 17 “Stolen water is sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.” 18 But he does not know that the dead[n] are there, that her guests are in the depths of Sheol.
The Proverbs of Solomon
10 The proverbs of Solomon.
A wise son makes a glad father, but a foolish son is a sorrow to his mother. 2 Treasures gained by wickedness do not profit, but righteousness delivers from death. 3 The Lord does not let the righteous go hungry, but he thwarts the craving of the wicked. 4 A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich. 5 He who gathers in summer is a prudent son, but he who sleeps in harvest is a son who brings shame. 6 Blessings are on the head of the righteous, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.[o] 7 The memory of the righteous is a blessing, but the name of the wicked will rot. 8 The wise of heart will receive commandments, but a babbling fool will come to ruin. 9 Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out. 10 Whoever winks the eye causes trouble, and a babbling fool will come to ruin. 11 The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence. 12 Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offenses. 13 On the lips of him who has understanding, wisdom is found, but a rod is for the back of him who lacks sense. 14 The wise lay up knowledge, but the mouth of a fool brings ruin near. 15 A rich man's wealth is his strong city; the poverty of the poor is their ruin. 16 The wage of the righteous leads to life, the gain of the wicked to sin. 17 Whoever heeds instruction is on the path to life, but he who rejects reproof leads others astray. 18 The one who conceals hatred has lying lips, and whoever utters slander is a fool. 19 When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent. 20 The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; the heart of the wicked is of little worth. 21 The lips of the righteous feed many, but fools die for lack of sense. 22 The blessing of the Lord makes rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.[p] 23 Doing wrong is like a joke to a fool, but wisdom is pleasure to a man of understanding. 24 What the wicked dreads will come upon him, but the desire of the righteous will be granted. 25 When the tempest passes, the wicked is no more, but the righteous is established forever. 26 Like vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard to those who send him. 27 The fear of the Lord prolongs life, but the years of the wicked will be short. 28 The hope of the righteous brings joy, but the expectation of the wicked will perish. 29 The way of the Lord is a stronghold to the blameless, but destruction to evildoers. 30 The righteous will never be removed, but the wicked will not dwell in the land. 31 The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom, but the perverse tongue will be cut off. 32 The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable, but the mouth of the wicked, what is perverse. 11 A false balance is an abomination to the Lord, but a just weight is his delight. 2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom. 3 The integrity of the upright guides them, but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them. 4 Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death. 5 The righteousness of the blameless keeps his way straight, but the wicked falls by his own wickedness. 6 The righteousness of the upright delivers them, but the treacherous are taken captive by their lust. 7 When the wicked dies, his hope will perish, and the expectation of wealth[q] perishes too. 8 The righteous is delivered from trouble, and the wicked walks into it instead. 9 With his mouth the godless man would destroy his neighbor, but by knowledge the righteous are delivered. 10 When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices, and when the wicked perish there are shouts of gladness. 11 By the blessing of the upright a city is exalted, but by the mouth of the wicked it is overthrown. 12 Whoever belittles his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding remains silent. 13 Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy in spirit keeps a thing covered. 14 Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety. 15 Whoever puts up security for a stranger will surely suffer harm, but he who hates striking hands in pledge is secure. 16 A gracious woman gets honor, and violent men get riches. 17 A man who is kind benefits himself, but a cruel man hurts himself. 18 The wicked earns deceptive wages, but one who sows righteousness gets a sure reward. 19 Whoever is steadfast in righteousness will live, but he who pursues evil will die. 20 Those of crooked heart are an abomination to the Lord, but those of blameless ways are his delight. 21 Be assured, an evil person will not go unpunished, but the offspring of the righteous will be delivered. 22 Like a gold ring in a pig's snout is a beautiful woman without discretion. 23 The desire of the righteous ends only in good, the expectation of the wicked in wrath. 24 One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want. 25 Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered. 26 The people curse him who holds back grain, but a blessing is on the head of him who sells it. 27 Whoever diligently seeks good seeks favor,[r] but evil comes to him who searches for it. 28 Whoever trusts in his riches will fall, but the righteous will flourish like a green leaf. 29 Whoever troubles his own household will inherit the wind, and the fool will be servant to the wise of heart. 30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and whoever captures souls is wise. 31 If the righteous is repaid on earth, how much more the wicked and the sinner! 12 Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid. 2 A good man obtains favor from the Lord, but a man of evil devices he condemns. 3 No one is established by wickedness, but the root of the righteous will never be moved. 4 An excellent wife is the crown of her husband, but she who brings shame is like rottenness in his bones. 5 The thoughts of the righteous are just; the counsels of the wicked are deceitful. 6 The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood, but the mouth of the upright delivers them. 7 The wicked are overthrown and are no more, but the house of the righteous will stand. 8 A man is commended according to his good sense, but one of twisted mind is despised. 9 Better to be lowly and have a servant than to play the great man and lack bread. 10 Whoever is righteous has regard for the life of his beast, but the mercy of the wicked is cruel. 11 Whoever works his land will have plenty of bread, but he who follows worthless pursuits lacks sense. 12 Whoever is wicked covets the spoil of evildoers, but the root of the righteous bears fruit. 13 An evil man is ensnared by the transgression of his lips,[s] but the righteous escapes from trouble. 14 From the fruit of his mouth a man is satisfied with good, and the work of a man's hand comes back to him. 15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice. 16 The vexation of a fool is known at once, but the prudent ignores an insult. 17 Whoever speaks[t] the truth gives honest evidence, but a false witness utters deceit. 18 There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. 19 Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue is but for a moment. 20 Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil, but those who plan peace have joy. 21 No ill befalls the righteous, but the wicked are filled with trouble. 22 Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who act faithfully are his delight. 23 A prudent man conceals knowledge, but the heart of fools proclaims folly. 24 The hand of the diligent will rule, while the slothful will be put to forced labor. 25 Anxiety in a man's heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad. 26 One who is righteous is a guide to his neighbor,[u] but the way of the wicked leads them astray. 27 Whoever is slothful will not roast his game, but the diligent man will get precious wealth.[v] 28 In the path of righteousness is life, and in its pathway there is no death. 13 A wise son hears his father's instruction, but a scoffer does not listen to rebuke. 2 From the fruit of his mouth a man eats what is good, but the desire of the treacherous is for violence. 3 Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin. 4 The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied. 5 The righteous hates falsehood, but the wicked brings shame[w] and disgrace. 6 Righteousness guards him whose way is blameless, but sin overthrows the wicked. 7 One pretends to be rich,[x] yet has nothing; another pretends to be poor,[y] yet has great wealth. 8 The ransom of a man's life is his wealth, but a poor man hears no threat. 9 The light of the righteous rejoices, but the lamp of the wicked will be put out. 10 By insolence comes nothing but strife, but with those who take advice is wisdom. 11 Wealth gained hastily[z] will dwindle, but whoever gathers little by little will increase it. 12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life. 13 Whoever despises the word[aa] brings destruction on himself, but he who reveres the commandment[ab] will be rewarded. 14 The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death. 15 Good sense wins favor, but the way of the treacherous is their ruin.[ac] 16 Every prudent man acts with knowledge, but a fool flaunts his folly. 17 A wicked messenger falls into trouble, but a faithful envoy brings healing. 18 Poverty and disgrace come to him who ignores instruction, but whoever heeds reproof is honored. 19 A desire fulfilled is sweet to the soul, but to turn away from evil is an abomination to fools. 20 Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm. 21 Disaster[ad] pursues sinners, but the righteous are rewarded with good. 22 A good man leaves an inheritance to his children's children, but the sinner's wealth is laid up for the righteous. 23 The fallow ground of the poor would yield much food, but it is swept away through injustice. 24 Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.[ae] 25 The righteous has enough to satisfy his appetite, but the belly of the wicked suffers want. 14 The wisest of women builds her house, but folly with her own hands tears it down. 2 Whoever walks in uprightness fears the Lord, but he who is devious in his ways despises him. 3 By the mouth of a fool comes a rod for his back,[af] but the lips of the wise will preserve them. 4 Where there are no oxen, the manger is clean, but abundant crops come by the strength of the ox. 5 A faithful witness does not lie, but a false witness breathes out lies. 6 A scoffer seeks wisdom in vain, but knowledge is easy for a man of understanding. 7 Leave the presence of a fool, for there you do not meet words of knowledge. 8 The wisdom of the prudent is to discern his way, but the folly of fools is deceiving. 9 Fools mock at the guilt offering, but the upright enjoy acceptance.[ag] 10 The heart knows its own bitterness, and no stranger shares its joy. 11 The house of the wicked will be destroyed, but the tent of the upright will flourish. 12 There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.[ah] 13 Even in laughter the heart may ache, and the end of joy may be grief. 14 The backslider in heart will be filled with the fruit of his ways, and a good man will be filled with the fruit of his ways. 15 The simple believes everything, but the prudent gives thought to his steps. 16 One who is wise is cautious[ai] and turns away from evil, but a fool is reckless and careless. 17 A man of quick temper acts foolishly, and a man of evil devices is hated. 18 The simple inherit folly, but the prudent are crowned with knowledge. 19 The evil bow down before the good, the wicked at the gates of the righteous. 20 The poor is disliked even by his neighbor, but the rich has many friends. 21 Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner, but blessed is he who is generous to the poor. 22 Do they not go astray who devise evil? Those who devise good meet[aj]steadfast love and faithfulness. 23 In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty. 24 The crown of the wise is their wealth, but the folly of fools brings folly. 25 A truthful witness saves lives, but one who breathes out lies is deceitful. 26 In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence, and his children will have a refuge. 27 The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death. 28 In a multitude of people is the glory of a king, but without people a prince is ruined. 29 Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly. 30 A tranquil[ak] heart gives life to the flesh, but envy[al] makes the bones rot. 31 Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him. 32 The wicked is overthrown through his evildoing, but the righteous finds refuge in his death. 33 Wisdom rests in the heart of a man of understanding, but it makes itself known even in the midst of fools.[am] 34 Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people. 35 A servant who deals wisely has the king's favor, but his wrath falls on one who acts shamefully. 15 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. 2 The tongue of the wise commends knowledge, but the mouths of fools pour out folly. 3 The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good. 4 A gentle[an] tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit. 5 A fool despises his father's instruction, but whoever heeds reproof is prudent. 6 In the house of the righteous there is much treasure, but trouble befalls the income of the wicked. 7 The lips of the wise spread knowledge; not so the hearts of fools.[ao] 8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him. 9 The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but he loves him who pursues righteousness. 10 There is severe discipline for him who forsakes the way; whoever hates reproof will die. 11 Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the Lord; how much more the hearts of the children of man! 12 A scoffer does not like to be reproved; he will not go to the wise. 13 A glad heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed. 14 The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge, but the mouths of fools feed on folly. 15 All the days of the afflicted are evil, but the cheerful of heart has a continual feast. 16 Better is a little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble with it. 17 Better is a dinner of herbs where love is than a fattened ox and hatred with it. 18 A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, but he who is slow to anger quiets contention.
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