Similitudes, Instructions

26 Like snow in summer and like (A)rain in harvest,
So honor is not (B)fitting for a fool.
Like a (C)sparrow in its [a]flitting, like a swallow in its flying,
So a (D)curse without cause does not [b]alight.
A (E)whip is for the horse, a bridle for the donkey,
And a (F)rod for the back of fools.
(G)Do not answer a fool according to his folly,
Or you will also be like him.
(H)Answer a fool as his folly deserves,
That he not be (I)wise in his own eyes.
He cuts off his own feet and drinks violence
Who sends a message by the hand of a fool.
Like the legs which [c]are useless to the lame,
So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.
Like [d]one who binds a stone in a sling,
So is he who gives honor to a fool.
Like a thorn which [e]falls into the hand of a drunkard,
So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.
10 [f]Like an archer who wounds everyone,
So is he who hires a fool or who hires those who pass by.
11 Like (J)a dog that returns to its vomit
Is a fool who (K)repeats [g]his folly.
12 Do you see a man (L)wise in his own eyes?
(M)There is more hope for a fool than for him.
13 The (N)sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road!
A lion is [h]in the open square!”
14 As the door turns on its hinges,
So does the (O)sluggard on his bed.
15 The (P)sluggard buries his hand in the dish;
He is weary of bringing it to his mouth again.
16 The sluggard is (Q)wiser in his own eyes
Than seven men who can [i]give a discreet answer.
17 Like one who takes a dog by the ears
Is he who passes by and [j]meddles with (R)strife not belonging to him.
18 Like a madman who throws
(S)Firebrands, arrows and death,
19 So is the man who (T)deceives his neighbor,
And says, “(U)Was I not joking?”
20 For lack of wood the fire goes out,
And where there is no (V)whisperer, (W)contention quiets down.
21 Like charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire,
So is a (X)contentious man to kindle strife.
22 The (Y)words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels,
And they go down into the [k]innermost parts of the body.
23 Like an earthen (Z)vessel overlaid with silver (AA)dross
Are burning lips and a wicked heart.
24 He who (AB)hates disguises it with his lips,
But he lays up (AC)deceit in his [l]heart.
25 When [m]he (AD)speaks graciously, do not believe him,
For there are seven abominations in his heart.
26 Though his hatred (AE)covers itself with guile,
His wickedness will be (AF)revealed before the assembly.
27 He who (AG)digs a pit will fall into it,
And he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him.
28 A lying tongue hates [n]those it crushes,
And a (AH)flattering mouth works ruin.


  1. Proverbs 26:2 Lit wandering
  2. Proverbs 26:2 Lit come
  3. Proverbs 26:7 Lit hang down from
  4. Proverbs 26:8 Lit the binding of
  5. Proverbs 26:9 Lit goes up
  6. Proverbs 26:10 Or A master workman produces all things, But he who hires a fool is like one who hires those who pass by
  7. Proverbs 26:11 Lit with his
  8. Proverbs 26:13 Lit within
  9. Proverbs 26:16 Lit return discreetly
  10. Proverbs 26:17 Lit infuriates himself
  11. Proverbs 26:22 Lit chambers of the belly
  12. Proverbs 26:24 Lit inward part
  13. Proverbs 26:25 Lit his voice is gracious
  14. Proverbs 26:28 Lit its crushed ones

26 Like snow in summer or rain(A) in harvest,
    honor is not fitting for a fool.(B)
Like a fluttering sparrow or a darting swallow,
    an undeserved curse does not come to rest.(C)
A whip for the horse, a bridle for the donkey,(D)
    and a rod for the backs of fools!(E)
Do not answer a fool according to his folly,
    or you yourself will be just like him.(F)
Answer a fool according to his folly,
    or he will be wise in his own eyes.(G)
Sending a message by the hands of a fool(H)
    is like cutting off one’s feet or drinking poison.
Like the useless legs of one who is lame
    is a proverb in the mouth of a fool.(I)
Like tying a stone in a sling
    is the giving of honor to a fool.(J)
Like a thornbush in a drunkard’s hand
    is a proverb in the mouth of a fool.(K)
10 Like an archer who wounds at random
    is one who hires a fool or any passer-by.
11 As a dog returns to its vomit,(L)
    so fools repeat their folly.(M)
12 Do you see a person wise in their own eyes?(N)
    There is more hope for a fool than for them.(O)

13 A sluggard says,(P) “There’s a lion in the road,
    a fierce lion roaming the streets!”(Q)
14 As a door turns on its hinges,
    so a sluggard turns on his bed.(R)
15 A sluggard buries his hand in the dish;
    he is too lazy to bring it back to his mouth.(S)
16 A sluggard is wiser in his own eyes
    than seven people who answer discreetly.

17 Like one who grabs a stray dog by the ears
    is someone who rushes into a quarrel not their own.

18 Like a maniac shooting
    flaming arrows of death
19 is one who deceives their neighbor
    and says, “I was only joking!”

20 Without wood a fire goes out;
    without a gossip a quarrel dies down.(T)
21 As charcoal to embers and as wood to fire,
    so is a quarrelsome person for kindling strife.(U)
22 The words of a gossip are like choice morsels;
    they go down to the inmost parts.(V)

23 Like a coating of silver dross on earthenware
    are fervent[a] lips with an evil heart.
24 Enemies disguise themselves with their lips,(W)
    but in their hearts they harbor deceit.(X)
25 Though their speech is charming,(Y) do not believe them,
    for seven abominations fill their hearts.(Z)
26 Their malice may be concealed by deception,
    but their wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.
27 Whoever digs a pit(AA) will fall into it;(AB)
    if someone rolls a stone, it will roll back on them.(AC)
28 A lying tongue hates those it hurts,
    and a flattering mouth(AD) works ruin.


  1. Proverbs 26:23 Hebrew; Septuagint smooth