21 The Lord can control a king’s mind as easily as he controls a river. He can direct it as he pleases.
2 A person may believe he is doing right. But the Lord judges his reasons.
3 Do what is right and fair. That is more important to the Lord than animal sacrifices.
4 Proud looks, proud thoughts and evil actions are sin.
5 Those who plan and work hard earn a profit. But those who act too quickly become poor.
6 Wealth that comes from telling lies vanishes like a mist and leads to death.
7 The violence of the wicked will destroy them because they refuse to do what is right.
8 Guilty people live dishonest lives. But honest people do what is right.
9 It is better to live in a corner on the roof[a] than inside the house with a quarreling wife.
10 An evil person only wants to harm others. His neighbor will get no mercy from him.
11 Punish a person who makes fun of wisdom, and he will become wise. But just teach a wise person, and he will get knowledge.
12 God, who is always right, sees the house of the wicked. And he brings about the ruin of every evil person.
13 If you ignore the poor when they cry for help, you also will cry for help and not be answered.
14 A gift given secretly will calm an angry man. A present given in secrecy will calm even great anger.
15 When things are done fairly, good people are happy, but evil people are frightened.
16 A person who does not use understanding will join the dead.
17 Whoever loves pleasure will become poor. Whoever loves wine and rich food will never be wealthy.
18 Wicked people will suffer instead of good people. And those who cannot be trusted will suffer instead of those who can.
19 It is better to live alone in the desert than with a quarreling and complaining wife.
20 Wise people store up the best foods and olive oil. But a foolish person eats up everything he has.
21 A person who tries to live right and be loyal finds life, success and honor.
22 A wise person can defeat a city full of strong men. He can tear down the defenses they trust.
23 A person who is careful about what he says keeps himself out of trouble.
24 People who act with stubborn pride are called “proud” and “bragger.”
25 The lazy person’s desire for sleep will kill him because he refuses to work. 26 All day long the lazy person wishes for more. But the good person gives without holding back.
27 The Lord hates sacrifices made by evil people, particularly when they make them for the wrong reasons.
28 The words of a lying witness will die. But the words of an obedient man will always be remembered.
29 A wicked person is stubborn. But an honest person thinks carefully about what he does.
30 There is no wisdom, understanding or advice that can succeed against the Lord.
31 You can get the horses ready for battle. But it is the Lord who gives the victory.
21:9roof In Bible times houses were built with flat roofs. The roof was used for drying things such as flax and fruit. And it was used as an extra room, as a place for worship and as a place to sleep in the summer.
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