Bible Book List

Proverbs 18 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Contrast the Upright and the Wicked

18 He who [willfully] separates himself [from God and man] seeks his own desire,
He quarrels against all sound wisdom.

A [closed-minded] fool does not delight in understanding,
But only in revealing his personal opinions [unwittingly displaying his self-indulgence and his stupidity].

When the wicked man comes [to the depth of evil], contempt [of all that is pure and good] also comes,
And with inner baseness (dishonor) comes outer shame (scorn).

The words of a man’s mouth are like deep waters [copious and difficult to fathom];
The fountain of [mature, godly] wisdom is like a bubbling stream [sparkling, fresh, pure, and life-giving].

To show respect to the wicked person is not good,
Nor to push aside and deprive the righteous of justice.

A fool’s lips bring contention and strife,
And his mouth invites a beating.

A fool’s mouth is his ruin,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.

The words of a whisperer (gossip) are like dainty morsels [to be greedily eaten];
They go down into the innermost chambers of the body [to be remembered and mused upon].

He who is careless in his work
Is a brother to him who destroys.
The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous runs to it and is safe and set on high [far above evil].
The rich man’s wealth is his strong city,
And like a high wall [of protection] in his own imagination and conceit.
Before disaster the heart of a man is haughty and filled with self-importance,
But humility comes before honor.
He who answers before he hears [the facts]—
It is folly and shame to him.
The spirit of a man sustains him in sickness,
But as for a broken spirit, who can bear it?
The mind of the prudent [always] acquires knowledge,
And the ear of the wise [always] seeks knowledge.
A man’s gift [given in love or courtesy] makes room for him
And brings him before great men.
The first one to plead his case seems right,
Until another comes and cross-examines him.
[a]To cast lots puts an end to quarrels
And decides between powerful contenders.
A brother offended is harder to win over than a fortified city,
And contentions [separating families] are like the bars of a castle.
A man’s stomach will be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth;
He will be satisfied with the consequence of his words.
Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it and indulge it will eat its fruit and bear the consequences of their words.
He who finds a [[b]true and faithful] wife finds a good thing
And obtains favor and approval from the Lord.
The poor man pleads,
But the rich man answers roughly.
The man of too many friends [chosen indiscriminately] will be broken in pieces and come to ruin,
But there is a [true, loving] friend who [is reliable and] sticks closer than a brother.


  1. Proverbs 18:18 See note 16:33.
  2. Proverbs 18:22 In Jewish tradition it is said that in Israel, they used to ask a man who had married, “Matsa or motse?” “Matsa” is the Hebrew for “finds” here, where a good wife is in view, and “motse” is the word for “found” (NASB “discovered”) in Eccl 7:26.
Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 18 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

A loner is out to get what he wants for himself.
He opposes all sound reasoning.
A fool does not find joy in understanding
    but only in expressing his own opinion.

When wickedness comes, contempt also comes,
    and insult comes along with disgrace.
The words of a person’s mouth are like deep waters.
The fountain of wisdom is an overflowing stream.
It is not good to be partial toward a wicked person,
    thereby depriving an innocent person of justice.

By talking, a fool gets into an argument,
    and his mouth invites a beating.
A fool’s mouth is his ruin.
His lips are a trap to his soul.
The words of a gossip are swallowed greedily,
    and they go down into a person’s innermost being.

How to Avoid Fools and Foolishness

Whoever is lazy in his work is related to a vandal.
10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower.
    A righteous person runs to it and is safe.
11 A rich person’s wealth is his strong city
    and is like a high wall in his imagination.

12 Before destruction a person’s heart is arrogant,
    but humility comes before honor.
13 Whoever gives an answer before he listens is stupid and shameful.
14 A person’s spirit can endure sickness,
    but who can bear a broken spirit?
15 The mind of a person who has understanding acquires knowledge.
The ears of wise people seek knowledge.
16 A gift opens doors for the one who gives it
    and brings him into the presence of great people.

17 The first to state his case seems right
    until his neighbor comes to cross-examine him.
18 Flipping a coin ends quarrels
    and settles issues between powerful people.
19 An offended brother is more resistant than a strong city,
    and disputes are like the locked gate of a castle tower.

20 A person’s speaking ability provides for his stomach.
His talking provides him a living.
21 The tongue has the power of life and death,
    and those who love to talk will have to eat their own words.

22 Whoever finds a wife finds something good
    and has obtained favor from the Lord.
23 A poor person is timid when begging,
    but a rich person is blunt when replying.
24 Friends can destroy one another,[a]
    but a loving friend can stick closer than family.


  1. Proverbs 18:24 Or “A person has friends as companions.”
GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

Copyright © 1995 by God's Word to the Nations. Used by permission of God's Word Mission Society.

Proverbs 18 Contemporary English Version (CEV)

It’s Wrong to Favor the Guilty

18 It’s selfish and stupid
    to think only of yourself
    and to sneer at people
    who have sense.[a]
Fools have no desire to learn;
    they would much rather
    give their own opinion.
Wrongdoing leads to shame
    and disgrace.
Words of wisdom
are a stream
    that flows
    from a deep fountain.
It’s wrong to favor the guilty
    and keep the innocent
    from getting justice.

Foolish talk will get you
    into a lot of trouble.
Saying foolish things
is like setting a trap
    to destroy yourself.
There’s nothing so delicious
as the taste of gossip!
    It melts in your mouth.
Being lazy is no different
    from being a troublemaker.

10 The Lord is a mighty tower
where his people can run
    for safety—
11     the rich think their money
    is a wall of protection.

12 Pride leads to destruction;
    humility leads to honor.
13 It’s stupid and embarrassing
    to give an answer
    before you listen.
14 Being cheerful helps
    when we are sick,
    but nothing helps
    when we give up.
15 Everyone with good sense
    wants to learn.
16     A gift will get you in
    to see anyone.
17 You may think you have won
your case in court,
    until your opponent speaks.
18 Drawing straws is one way
    to settle a difficult case.
19 Making up with a friend
    you have offended[b]
    is harder than breaking
    through a city wall.

20 Make your words good—
    you will be glad you did.
21 Words can bring death or life!
    Talk too much, and you will eat
    everything you say.
22 A man’s greatest treasure
is his wife—
    she is a gift from the Lord.
23 The poor must beg for help,
    but the rich can give
    a harsh reply.
24 Some friends don’t help,[c]
    but a true friend is closer
    than your own family.


  1. 18.1 sense: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 1.
  2. 18.19 Making. . . offended: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  3. 18.24 Some. . . help: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
Viewing of
Cross references