The Way of Wisdom

Wisdom has (A)built her house,
She has hewn out her seven pillars;
(B)She has slaughtered her meat,
(C)She has mixed her wine,
She has also [a]furnished her table.
She has sent out her maidens,
She cries out from the highest places of the city,
“Whoever(D) is simple, let him turn in here!”
As for him who lacks understanding, she says to him,
“Come,(E) eat of my bread
And drink of the wine I have mixed.
Forsake foolishness and live,
And go in the way of understanding.

“He who corrects a scoffer gets shame for himself,
And he who rebukes a wicked man only harms himself.
(F)Do not correct a scoffer, lest he hate you;
(G)Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you.
Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser;
Teach a just man, (H)and he will increase in learning.

10 “The(I) fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
11 (J)For by me your days will be multiplied,
And years of life will be added to you.
12 (K)If you are wise, you are wise for yourself,
And if you scoff, you will bear it alone.”

The Way of Folly

13 (L)A foolish woman is [b]clamorous;
She is simple, and knows nothing.
14 For she sits at the door of her house,
On a seat (M)by the highest places of the city,
15 To call to those who pass by,
Who go straight on their way:
16 “Whoever(N) is [c]simple, let him turn in here”;
And as for him who lacks understanding, she says to him,
17 “Stolen(O) water is sweet,
And bread eaten in secret is pleasant.”
18 But he does not know that (P)the dead are there,
That her guests are in the depths of [d]hell.

Wise Sayings of Solomon

10 The proverbs of (Q)Solomon:

(R)A wise son makes a glad father,
But a foolish son is the grief of his mother.

(S)Treasures of wickedness profit nothing,
(T)But righteousness delivers from death.
(U)The Lord will not allow the righteous soul to famish,
But He casts away the desire of the wicked.

(V)He who has a slack hand becomes poor,
But (W)the hand of the diligent makes rich.
He who gathers in (X)summer is a wise son;
He who sleeps in harvest is (Y)a son who causes shame.

Blessings are on the head of the righteous,
But violence covers the mouth of the wicked.
(Z)The memory of the righteous is blessed,
But the name of the wicked will rot.

The wise in heart will receive commands,
(AA)But [e]a prating fool will [f]fall.

(AB)He who walks with integrity walks securely,
But he who perverts his ways will become known.

10 He who winks with the eye causes trouble,
But a prating fool will fall.

11 The mouth of the righteous is a well of life,
But violence covers the mouth of the wicked.

12 Hatred stirs up strife,
But (AC)love covers all sins.

13 Wisdom is found on the lips of him who has understanding,
But (AD)a rod is for the back of him who [g]is devoid of understanding.

14 Wise people store up knowledge,
But (AE)the mouth of the foolish is near destruction.

15 The (AF)rich man’s wealth is his strong city;
The destruction of the poor is their poverty.

16 The labor of the righteous leads to (AG)life,
The wages of the wicked to sin.

17 He who keeps instruction is in the way of life,
But he who refuses correction [h]goes astray.

18 Whoever (AH)hides hatred has lying lips,
And (AI)whoever spreads slander is a fool.

19 (AJ)In the multitude of words sin is not lacking,
But (AK)he who restrains his lips is wise.
20 The tongue of the righteous is choice silver;
The heart of the wicked is worth little.
21 The lips of the righteous feed many,
But fools die for lack of [i]wisdom.

22 (AL)The blessing of the Lord makes one rich,
And He adds no sorrow with it.

23 (AM)To do evil is like sport to a fool,
But a man of understanding has wisdom.
24 (AN)The fear of the wicked will come upon him,
And (AO)the desire of the righteous will be granted.
25 When the whirlwind passes by, (AP)the wicked is no more,
But (AQ)the righteous has an everlasting foundation.

26 As vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes,
So is the lazy man to those who send him.

27 (AR)The fear of the Lord prolongs days,
But (AS)the years of the wicked will be shortened.
28 The hope of the righteous will be gladness,
But the (AT)expectation of the wicked will perish.
29 The way of the Lord is strength for the upright,
But (AU)destruction will come to the workers of iniquity.

30 (AV)The righteous will never be removed,
But the wicked will not inhabit the [j]earth.
31 (AW)The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom,
But the perverse tongue will be cut out.
32 The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable,
But the mouth of the wicked what is perverse.

The Folly of Wickedness

11 (AX)Dishonest[k] scales are an abomination to the Lord,
But a [l]just weight is His delight.

When pride comes, then comes (AY)shame;
But with the humble is wisdom.

The integrity of the upright will guide (AZ)them,
But the perversity of the unfaithful will destroy them.
(BA)Riches do not profit in the day of wrath,
But (BB)righteousness delivers from death.
The righteousness of the blameless will [m]direct his way aright,
But the wicked will fall by his own (BC)wickedness.
The righteousness of the upright will deliver them,
But the unfaithful will be caught by their lust.

When a wicked man dies, his expectation will (BD)perish,
And the hope of the unjust perishes.
(BE)The righteous is delivered from trouble,
And it comes to the wicked instead.
The hypocrite with his mouth destroys his neighbor,
But through knowledge the righteous will be delivered.
10 (BF)When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices;
And when the wicked perish, there is jubilation.
11 By the blessing of the upright the city is (BG)exalted,
But it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.

12 He who [n]is devoid of wisdom despises his neighbor,
But a man of understanding holds his peace.

13 (BH)A talebearer reveals secrets,
But he who is of a faithful spirit (BI)conceals a matter.

14 (BJ)Where there is no counsel, the people fall;
But in the multitude of counselors there is safety.

15 He who is (BK)surety[o] for a stranger will suffer,
But one who hates [p]being surety is secure.

16 A gracious woman retains honor,
But ruthless men retain riches.
17 (BL)The merciful man does good for his own soul,
But he who is cruel troubles his own flesh.
18 The wicked man does deceptive work,
But (BM)he who sows righteousness will have a sure reward.
19 As righteousness leads to (BN)life,
So he who pursues evil pursues it to his own (BO)death.
20 Those who are of a perverse heart are an abomination to the Lord,
But the blameless in their ways are His delight.
21 (BP)Though they join [q]forces, the wicked will not go unpunished;
But (BQ)the posterity of the righteous will be delivered.

22 As a ring of gold in a swine’s snout,
So is a lovely woman who lacks [r]discretion.

23 The desire of the righteous is only good,
But the expectation of the wicked (BR)is wrath.

24 There is one who (BS)scatters, yet increases more;
And there is one who withholds more than is right,
But it leads to poverty.
25 (BT)The generous soul will be made rich,
(BU)And he who waters will also be watered himself.
26 The people will curse (BV)him who withholds grain,
But (BW)blessing will be on the head of him who sells it.

27 He who earnestly seeks good [s]finds favor,
(BX)But trouble will come to him who seeks evil.

28 (BY)He who trusts in his riches will fall,
But (BZ)the righteous will flourish like foliage.

29 He who troubles his own house (CA)will inherit the wind,
And the fool will be (CB)servant to the wise of heart.

30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life,
And (CC)he who [t]wins souls is wise.

31 (CD)If the righteous will be [u]recompensed on the earth,
How much more the ungodly and the sinner.

The House of the Righteous Shall Stand

12 Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge,
But he who hates correction is stupid.

A good man obtains favor from the Lord,
But a man of wicked intentions He will condemn.

A man is not established by wickedness,
But the (CE)root of the righteous cannot be moved.

(CF)An[v] excellent wife is the crown of her husband,
But she who causes shame is (CG)like rottenness in his bones.

The thoughts of the righteous are right,
But the counsels of the wicked are deceitful.
(CH)The words of the wicked are, “Lie in wait for blood,”
(CI)But the mouth of the upright will deliver them.

(CJ)The wicked are overthrown and are no more,
But the house of the righteous will stand.

A man will be commended according to his wisdom,
(CK)But he who is of a perverse heart will be despised.

(CL)Better is the one who is [w]slighted but has a servant,
Than he who honors himself but lacks bread.

10 (CM)A righteous man regards the life of his animal,
But the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.

11 (CN)He who [x]tills his land will be satisfied with (CO)bread,
But he who follows [y]frivolity (CP)is devoid of [z]understanding.

12 The wicked covet the catch of evil men,
But the root of the righteous yields fruit.
13 (CQ)The wicked is ensnared by the transgression of his lips,
(CR)But the righteous will come through trouble.
14 (CS)A man will be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth,
(CT)And the recompense of a man’s hands will be rendered to him.

15 (CU)The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
But he who heeds counsel is wise.
16 (CV)A fool’s wrath is known at once,
But a prudent man covers shame.

17 (CW)He who speaks truth declares righteousness,
But a false witness, deceit.
18 (CX)There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword,
But the tongue of the wise promotes health.
19 The truthful lip shall be established forever,
(CY)But a lying tongue is but for a moment.
20 Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil,
But counselors of peace have joy.
21 (CZ)No grave [aa]trouble will overtake the righteous,
But the wicked shall be filled with evil.
22 (DA)Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord,
But those who deal truthfully are His delight.

23 (DB)A prudent man conceals knowledge,
But the heart of fools proclaims foolishness.

24 (DC)The hand of the diligent will rule,
But the lazy man will be put to forced labor.

25 (DD)Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression,
But (DE)a good word makes it glad.

26 The righteous should choose his friends carefully,
For the way of the wicked leads them astray.

27 The lazy man does not roast what he took in hunting,
But diligence is man’s precious possession.

28 In the way of righteousness is life,
And in its pathway there is no death.

Wisdom Loves Righteousness

13 A wise son heeds his father’s instruction,
(DF)But a scoffer does not listen to rebuke.

(DG)A man shall eat well by the fruit of his mouth,
But the soul of the unfaithful feeds on violence.
(DH)He who guards his mouth preserves his life,
But he who opens wide his lips shall have destruction.

(DI)The soul of a lazy man desires, and has nothing;
But the soul of the diligent shall be made rich.

A righteous man hates lying,
But a wicked man is loathsome and comes to shame.
(DJ)Righteousness guards him whose way is blameless,
But wickedness overthrows the sinner.

(DK)There is one who makes himself rich, yet has nothing;
And one who makes himself poor, yet has great riches.

The ransom of a man’s life is his riches,
But the poor does not hear rebuke.

The light of the righteous rejoices,
(DL)But the lamp of the wicked will be put out.

10 By pride comes nothing but (DM)strife,
But with the well-advised is wisdom.

11 (DN)Wealth gained by dishonesty will be diminished,
But he who gathers by labor will increase.

12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
But (DO)when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.

13 He who (DP)despises the word will be destroyed,
But he who fears the commandment will be rewarded.
14 (DQ)The law of the wise is a fountain of life,
To turn one away from (DR)the snares of death.

15 Good understanding [ab]gains (DS)favor,
But the way of the unfaithful is hard.
16 (DT)Every prudent man acts with knowledge,
But a fool lays open his folly.

17 A wicked messenger falls into trouble,
But (DU)a faithful ambassador brings health.

18 Poverty and shame will come to him who [ac]disdains correction,
But (DV)he who regards a rebuke will be honored.

19 A desire accomplished is sweet to the soul,
But it is an abomination to fools to depart from evil.

20 He who walks with wise men will be wise,
But the companion of fools will be destroyed.

21 (DW)Evil pursues sinners,
But to the righteous, good shall be repaid.

22 A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children,
But (DX)the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.

23 (DY)Much food is in the [ad]fallow ground of the poor,
And for lack of justice there is [ae]waste.

24 (DZ)He who spares his rod hates his son,
But he who loves him disciplines him [af]promptly.

25 (EA)The righteous eats to the satisfying of his soul,
But the stomach of the wicked shall be in want.

The Ways of Life and Death

14 The wise woman builds her house,
But the foolish pulls it down with her hands.

He who walks in his uprightness fears the Lord,
(EB)But he who is perverse in his ways despises Him.

In the mouth of a fool is a rod of pride,
(EC)But the lips of the wise will preserve them.

Where no oxen are, the [ag]trough is clean;
But much increase comes by the strength of an ox.

A (ED)faithful witness does not lie,
But a false witness will utter (EE)lies.

A scoffer seeks wisdom and does not find it,
But (EF)knowledge is easy to him who understands.
Go from the presence of a foolish man,
When you do not perceive in him the lips of (EG)knowledge.
The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way,
But the folly of fools is deceit.

(EH)Fools mock at [ah]sin,
But among the upright there is favor.

10 The heart knows its own bitterness,
And a stranger does not share its joy.

11 (EI)The house of the wicked will be overthrown,
But the tent of the upright will flourish.

12 (EJ)There is a way that seems right to a man,
But (EK)its end is the way of (EL)death.

13 Even in laughter the heart may sorrow,
And (EM)the end of mirth may be grief.

14 The backslider in heart will be (EN)filled with his own ways,
But a good man will be satisfied [ai]from (EO)above.

15 The simple believes every word,
But the prudent considers well his steps.
16 (EP)A wise man fears and departs from evil,
But a fool rages and is self-confident.
17 A quick-tempered man acts foolishly,
And a man of wicked intentions is hated.
18 The simple inherit folly,
But the prudent are crowned with knowledge.
19 The evil will bow before the good,
And the wicked at the gates of the righteous.

20 (EQ)The poor man is hated even by his own neighbor,
But [aj]the rich has many (ER)friends.
21 He who despises his neighbor sins;
(ES)But he who has mercy on the poor, happy is he.

22 Do they not go astray who devise evil?
But mercy and truth belong to those who devise good.

23 In all labor there is profit,
But [ak]idle chatter leads only to poverty.

24 The crown of the wise is their riches,
But the foolishness of fools is folly.

25 A true witness [al]delivers (ET)souls,
But a deceitful witness speaks lies.

26 In the fear of the Lord there is strong confidence,
And His children will have a place of refuge.
27 (EU)The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,
To turn one away from the snares of death.

28 In a multitude of people is a king’s honor,
But in the lack of people is the downfall of a prince.

29 (EV)He who is slow to wrath has great understanding,
But he who is [am]impulsive exalts folly.

30 A sound heart is life to the body,
But (EW)envy is (EX)rottenness to the bones.

31 (EY)He who oppresses the poor reproaches (EZ)his Maker,
But he who honors Him has mercy on the needy.

32 The wicked is banished in his wickedness,
But (FA)the righteous has a refuge in his death.

33 Wisdom rests in the heart of him who has understanding,
But (FB)what is in the heart of fools is made known.

34 Righteousness exalts a (FC)nation,
But sin is a [an]reproach to any people.

35 (FD)The king’s favor is toward a wise servant,
But his wrath is against him who causes shame.


  1. Proverbs 9:2 arranged
  2. Proverbs 9:13 boisterous
  3. Proverbs 9:16 naive
  4. Proverbs 9:18 Or Sheol
  5. Proverbs 10:8 Lit. the foolish of lips
  6. Proverbs 10:8 be thrust down or ruined
  7. Proverbs 10:13 Lit. lacks heart
  8. Proverbs 10:17 leads
  9. Proverbs 10:21 Lit. heart
  10. Proverbs 10:30 land
  11. Proverbs 11:1 deceptive
  12. Proverbs 11:1 Lit. perfect stone
  13. Proverbs 11:5 Or make smooth or straight
  14. Proverbs 11:12 Lit. lacks heart
  15. Proverbs 11:15 guaranty
  16. Proverbs 11:15 those pledging guaranty, lit. those who strike hands
  17. Proverbs 11:21 Lit. hand to hand
  18. Proverbs 11:22 taste
  19. Proverbs 11:27 Lit. seeks
  20. Proverbs 11:30 Lit. takes, in the sense of brings, cf. 1 Sam. 16:11
  21. Proverbs 11:31 rewarded
  22. Proverbs 12:4 Lit. A wife of valor
  23. Proverbs 12:9 lightly esteemed
  24. Proverbs 12:11 works or cultivates
  25. Proverbs 12:11 Lit. vain things
  26. Proverbs 12:11 Lit. heart
  27. Proverbs 12:21 harm
  28. Proverbs 13:15 gives
  29. Proverbs 13:18 Lit. ignores
  30. Proverbs 13:23 uncultivated
  31. Proverbs 13:23 Lit. what is swept away
  32. Proverbs 13:24 early
  33. Proverbs 14:4 manger or feed trough
  34. Proverbs 14:9 Lit. guilt
  35. Proverbs 14:14 Lit. from above himself
  36. Proverbs 14:20 Lit. many are the lovers of the rich
  37. Proverbs 14:23 Lit. talk of the lips
  38. Proverbs 14:25 saves lives
  39. Proverbs 14:29 Lit. short of spirit
  40. Proverbs 14:34 shame or disgrace

Bible Gateway Recommends