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Proverbs 2New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 2

The Blessings of Wisdom[a]

My son, if you receive my words
    and treasure my commands,
Turning your ear to wisdom,[b]
    inclining your heart to understanding;
Yes, if you call for intelligence,
    and to understanding raise your voice;
If you seek her like silver,
    and like hidden treasures search her out,
Then will you understand the fear of the Lord;
    the knowledge of God you will find;
For the Lord gives wisdom,
    from his mouth come knowledge and understanding;
He has success in store for the upright,
    is the shield of those who walk honestly,
Guarding the paths of justice,
    protecting the way of his faithful ones,
Then you will understand what is right and just,
    what is fair, every good path;
10 For wisdom will enter your heart,
    knowledge will be at home in your soul,
11 Discretion will watch over you,
    understanding will guard you;
12 [c]Saving you from the way of the wicked,
    from those whose speech is perverse.
13 From those who have left the straight paths
    to walk in the ways of darkness,
14 Who delight in doing evil
    and celebrate perversity;
15 Whose ways are crooked,
    whose paths are devious;
16 [d]Saving you from a stranger,
    from a foreign woman with her smooth words,
17 One who forsakes the companion of her youth
    and forgets the covenant of her God;
18 For her path sinks down to death,
    and her footsteps lead to the shades.[e]
19 None who enter there come back,
    or gain the paths of life.
20 Thus you may walk in the way of the good,
    and keep to the paths of the just.
21 [f]For the upright will dwell in the land,
    people of integrity will remain in it;
22 But the wicked will be cut off from the land,
    the faithless will be rooted out of it.

Footnotes:

  1. 2:1–22 Chapter 2 is a single poem, an acrostic of twenty-two lines, the number of consonants in the Hebrew alphabet. In vv. 1–11, the letter aleph, the first letter of the alphabet, predominates, and in vv. 12–22, the letter lamed, the first letter of the second half of the alphabet. A single structure runs through the whole: if (aleph) you search…then (aleph) the Lord/Wisdom will grant…saving (lamed) you from the wicked man/woman…thus (lamed) you can walk in the safe way….
  2. 2:2–3 Wisdom…understanding…intelligence: various names or aspects of the same gift.
  3. 2:12–15 As in 1:8–19, there is an obstacle to the quest for wisdom—deceitful and violent men. Cf. also 4:10–19. They offer a way of life that is opposed to the way of wisdom.
  4. 2:16–19 A second obstacle and counter-figure to Wisdom, personified as an attractive woman, is the “stranger,” or “foreigner,” from outside the territory or kinship group, hence inappropriate as a marriage partner. In Proverbs she comes to be identified with Woman Folly, whose deceitful words promise life but lead to death. Woman Folly appears also in chap. 5, 6:20–35, chap. 7 and 9:13–18. Covenant: refers to the vow uttered with divine sanction at the woman’s previous marriage, as the parallel verse suggests. She is already married and relations with her would be adulterous.
  5. 2:18 Shades: the inhabitants of Sheol.
  6. 2:21–22 Verses 21–22 echo the ending of Wisdom’s speech in 1:32–33, in which refusing Wisdom’s invitation meant death and obedience to her meant life. The same set of ideas is found in Ps 37 (especially vv. 3, 9, 11, 22, 29, 34, and 38): to live on (or inherit) the land and to be uprooted from the land are expressions of divine recompense.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Proverbs 2New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (NRSVCE)

The Value of Wisdom

My child, if you accept my words
    and treasure up my commandments within you,
making your ear attentive to wisdom
    and inclining your heart to understanding;
if you indeed cry out for insight,
    and raise your voice for understanding;
if you seek it like silver,
    and search for it as for hidden treasures—
then you will understand the fear of the Lord
    and find the knowledge of God.
For the Lord gives wisdom;
    from his mouth come knowledge and understanding;
he stores up sound wisdom for the upright;
    he is a shield to those who walk blamelessly,
guarding the paths of justice
    and preserving the way of his faithful ones.
Then you will understand righteousness and justice
    and equity, every good path;
10 for wisdom will come into your heart,
    and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;
11 prudence will watch over you;
    and understanding will guard you.
12 It will save you from the way of evil,
    from those who speak perversely,
13 who forsake the paths of uprightness
    to walk in the ways of darkness,
14 who rejoice in doing evil
    and delight in the perverseness of evil;
15 those whose paths are crooked,
    and who are devious in their ways.

16 You will be saved from the loose[a] woman,
    from the adulteress with her smooth words,
17 who forsakes the partner of her youth
    and forgets her sacred covenant;
18 for her way[b] leads down to death,
    and her paths to the shades;
19 those who go to her never come back,
    nor do they regain the paths of life.

20 Therefore walk in the way of the good,
    and keep to the paths of the just.
21 For the upright will abide in the land,
    and the innocent will remain in it;
22 but the wicked will be cut off from the land,
    and the treacherous will be rooted out of it.

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 2:16 Heb strange
  2. Proverbs 2:18 Cn: Heb house
New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (NRSVCE)

New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright © 1989, 1993 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 2Good News Translation (GNT)

The Rewards of Wisdom

My child, learn what I teach you and never forget what I tell you to do. Listen to what is wise and try to understand it. Yes, beg for knowledge; plead for insight. Look for it as hard as you would for silver or some hidden treasure. If you do, you will know what it means to fear the Lord and you will succeed in learning about God. It is the Lord who gives wisdom; from him come knowledge and understanding. He provides help and protection for those who are righteous and honest. He protects those who treat others fairly, and guards those who are devoted to him.

If you listen to me, you will know what is right, just, and fair. You will know what you should do. 10 You will become wise, and your knowledge will give you pleasure. 11 Your insight and understanding will protect you 12 and prevent you from doing the wrong thing. They will keep you away from people who stir up trouble by what they say— 13 those who have abandoned a righteous life to live in the darkness of sin, 14 those who find pleasure in doing wrong and who enjoy senseless evil, 15 unreliable people who cannot be trusted.

16 You will be able to resist any immoral woman who tries to seduce you with her smooth talk, 17 who is faithless to her own husband and forgets her sacred vows. 18 If you go to her house, you are traveling the road to death. To go there is to approach the world of the dead. 19 No one who visits her ever comes back. He never returns to the road to life. 20 So you must follow the example of good people and live a righteous life. 21 Righteous people—people of integrity—will live in this land of ours. 22 But God will snatch the wicked from the land and pull sinners out of it like plants from the ground.

Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Proverbs 2Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA)

My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and wilt hide my commandments with thee,

That thy ear may hearken to wisdom: Incline thy heart to know prudence:

For if thou shalt call for wisdom, and incline thy heart to prudence:

If thou shalt seek her as money, and shalt dig for her as for a treasure:

Then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and shalt find the knowledge of God.

Because the Lord giveth wisdom: and out of his mouth cometh prudence and knowledge.

He will keep the salvation of the righteous, and protect them that walk in simplicity.

Keeping the paths of justice, and guarding the ways of saints.

Then shalt thou understand justice, and judgment, and equity, and every good path.

10 If wisdom shall enter into thy heart, and knowledge please thy soul:

11 Counsel shall keep thee, and prudence shall preserve thee,

12 That thou mayst be delivered from the evil way, and from the man that speaketh perverse things:

13 Who leave the right way, and walk by dark ways:

14 Who are glad when they have done evil, and rejoice in most wicked things:

15 Whose ways are perverse, and their steps infamous.

16 That thou mayst be delivered from the strange women, and from the stranger, who softeneth her words:

17 And forsaketh the guide of her youth,

18 And hath forgotten the covenant of her God: for her house inclineth unto death, and her paths to hell.

19 None that go in unto her shall return again, neither shall they take hold of the paths of life,

20 That thou mayst walk in a good way: and mayst keep the paths of the just.

21 For they that are upright shall dwell in the earth, and the simple shall continue in it.

22 But the wicked shall be destroyed from the earth: and they that do unjustly shall be taken away from it.

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