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14 Every wise woman encourages and builds up her family,

but a foolish woman over time will tear it down by her own actions.
Lovers of truth follow the right path
because of their wonderment and worship of God.
But the devious display their disdain for him.
The words of a proud fool will all come back to haunt him.
But the words of the wise
will become a shield of protection around them.
The only clean stable is an empty stable.
So if you want the work of an ox and to enjoy an abundant harvest,
you’ll have a mess or two to clean up!
An honest witness will never lie,
but a deceitful witness lies with every breath.
The intellectually arrogant seek for wisdom,
but they never seem to discover
what they claim they’re looking for.
For revelation-knowledge flows to the one
who hungers for understanding.
The words of the wise are like weapons of knowledge.[a]
If you need wise counsel, stay away from the fool.
For the wisdom of the wise will keep life on the right track,
while the fool only deceives himself
and refuses to face reality.
Fools mock the need for repentance,[b]
while the favor of God rests upon all his lovers.
10 Don’t expect anyone else to fully understand
both the bitterness and the joys
of all you experience in your life.
11 The household of the wicked is soon torn apart,
while the family of the righteous flourishes.
12 You can rationalize it all you want
and justify the path of error you have chosen,
but you’ll find out in the end that you took the road to destruction.
13 Superficial laughter can hide a heavy heart,
but when the laughter ends, the pain resurfaces.
14 Those who turn from the truth get what they deserve,
but a good person receives a sweet reward.[c]
15 A gullible person will believe anything,
but a sensible person will confirm the facts.
16 A wise person is careful in all things and turns quickly from evil,
while the impetuous fool moves ahead with overconfidence.
17 An impulsive person has a short fuse and can ruin everything,
but the wise show self-control.[d]
18 The naïve demonstrate a lack of wisdom,
but the lovers of wisdom are crowned with revelation-knowledge.
19 Evil ones will pay tribute to good people
and eventually come to be servants of the godly.[e]
20 The poor are disliked even by their neighbors,
but everyone wants to get close to the wealthy.
21 It’s a sin to despise one who is less fortunate than you,[f]
but when you are kind to the poor,
you will prosper and be blessed.
22 Haven’t you noticed how evil schemers always wander astray?
But kindness and truth come to those
who make plans to be pure in all their ways.[g]
23 If you work hard at what you do,
great abundance will come to you.
But merely talking about getting rich
while living to only pursue your pleasures[h]
brings you face-to-face with poverty.[i]
24 The true net worth of the wise[j] is the wealth that wisdom imparts.
But the way of life for the fool is his foolishness.[k]
25 Speak the truth and you’ll save souls,
but in the spreading of lies treachery thrives.
26 Confidence and strength flood the hearts
of the lovers of God who live in awe of him,
and their devotion provides their children
with a place of shelter and security.[l]
27 To worship God in wonder and awe
opens a fountain of life within you,
empowering you to escape death’s domain.[m]
28 A king glories in the number of his loyal followers,
but a dwindling population spells ruin for any leader.
29 When your heart overflows with understanding
you’ll be very slow to get angry.
But if you have a quick temper,
your impatience will be quickly seen by all.
30 A tender, tranquil heart will make you healthy,[n]
but jealousy can make you sick.
31 Insult your Creator, will you?
That’s exactly what you do
every time that you oppress the powerless![o]
Showing kindness to the poor is equal to honoring your maker.
32 The wicked are crushed by every calamity,
but the lovers of God find a strong hope
even in the time of death.[p]
33 Wisdom soothes the heart of the one with living-understanding,
but the heart of the fool just stockpiles stupidity.
34 A nation is exalted by the righteousness of its people,
but sin heaps disgrace upon the land.
35 A wise and faithful servant receives promotion from the king,
but the one who acts disgracefully
gets to taste the anger of the king.[q]


  1. Proverbs 14:7 As translated from the Aramaic.
  2. Proverbs 14:9 Or “Fools mock guilt [or guilt offering].” The Septuagint is “The house of the transgressor owes purification.”
  3. Proverbs 14:14 As translated from Hebrew manuscripts. The Aramaic is “A good man will be filled from the awe of his soul.”
  4. Proverbs 14:17 As translated from the Aramaic. The Hebrew is “And a crafty schemer is hated.” The Greek Septuagint is “A sensible man bears up under many things.”
  5. Proverbs 14:19 The Hebrew phrase literally means “They will come [or bow] at the gates of the righteous.”
  6. Proverbs 14:21 Implied in the Hebrew parallelism. The Hebrew phrase here literally means “your neighbor.”
  7. Proverbs 14:22 Both the Aramaic and the Septuagint insert a verse here that is not found in the Hebrew: “The followers of evil don’t understand mercy and faith, but you’ll find kindness and faith with those who do good.”
  8. Proverbs 14:23 As translated from the Septuagint.
  9. Proverbs 14:23 There is an additional verse found here in the Aramaic that is missing from the Hebrew text: “The Lord Jehovah heals every sickness, but evil speaking makes you sick [harms you].”
  10. Proverbs 14:24 Or “the crown of the wise.”
  11. Proverbs 14:24 The Aramaic word translated here as “foolishness” can also mean “insanity.”
  12. Proverbs 14:26 To live as a passionate lover of God will bring benefit even to your children.
  13. Proverbs 14:27 Or “empowering you to turn from the deadly snares.”
  14. Proverbs 14:30 Or “A heart of healing is the life of the flesh.”
  15. Proverbs 14:31 Or “slander the poor.” Every human being is made in God’s image, including the poor.
  16. Proverbs 14:32 Our strong hope is that our lives will continue in the presence of God in the resurrection glory. Both the Septuagint and the Aramaic read quite differently: “But the one who trusts in his integrity is righteous.”
  17. Proverbs 14:35 As translated from the Hebrew. The Septuagint reads “And by his good behavior shame is removed.”

14 The wise woman builds her house,(A)
    but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.

Whoever fears the Lord walks uprightly,
    but those who despise him are devious in their ways.

A fool’s mouth lashes out with pride,(B)
    but the lips of the wise protect them.(C)

Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty,
    but from the strength of an ox(D) come abundant harvests.

An honest witness does not deceive,
    but a false witness pours out lies.(E)

The mocker seeks wisdom and finds none,
    but knowledge comes easily to the discerning.(F)

Stay away from a fool,
    for you will not find knowledge on their lips.

The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways,(G)
    but the folly of fools is deception.(H)

Fools mock at making amends for sin,
    but goodwill is found among the upright.

10 Each heart knows its own bitterness,
    and no one else can share its joy.

11 The house of the wicked will be destroyed,(I)
    but the tent of the upright will flourish.(J)

12 There is a way that appears to be right,(K)
    but in the end it leads to death.(L)

13 Even in laughter(M) the heart may ache,
    and rejoicing may end in grief.

14 The faithless will be fully repaid for their ways,(N)
    and the good rewarded for theirs.(O)

15 The simple believe anything,
    but the prudent give thought to their steps.(P)

16 The wise fear the Lord and shun evil,(Q)
    but a fool(R) is hotheaded and yet feels secure.

17 A quick-tempered person(S) does foolish things,(T)
    and the one who devises evil schemes is hated.(U)

18 The simple inherit folly,
    but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.

19 Evildoers will bow down in the presence of the good,
    and the wicked at the gates of the righteous.(V)

20 The poor are shunned even by their neighbors,
    but the rich have many friends.(W)

21 It is a sin to despise one’s neighbor,(X)
    but blessed is the one who is kind to the needy.(Y)

22 Do not those who plot evil go astray?(Z)
    But those who plan what is good find[a] love and faithfulness.

23 All hard work brings a profit,
    but mere talk leads only to poverty.

24 The wealth of the wise is their crown,
    but the folly of fools yields folly.(AA)

25 A truthful witness saves lives,
    but a false witness is deceitful.(AB)

26 Whoever fears the Lord has a secure fortress,(AC)
    and for their children it will be a refuge.(AD)

27 The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,(AE)
    turning a person from the snares of death.(AF)

28 A large population is a king’s glory,
    but without subjects a prince is ruined.(AG)

29 Whoever is patient has great understanding,(AH)
    but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.(AI)

30 A heart at peace gives life to the body,
    but envy rots the bones.(AJ)

31 Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker,(AK)
    but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.(AL)

32 When calamity comes, the wicked are brought down,(AM)
    but even in death the righteous seek refuge in God.(AN)

33 Wisdom reposes in the heart of the discerning(AO)
    and even among fools she lets herself be known.[b]

34 Righteousness exalts a nation,(AP)
    but sin condemns any people.

35 A king delights in a wise servant,
    but a shameful servant arouses his fury.(AQ)


  1. Proverbs 14:22 Or show
  2. Proverbs 14:33 Hebrew; Septuagint and Syriac discerning / but in the heart of fools she is not known