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Proverbs 26-27 Common English Bible (CEB)

26 Like snow in the summer or rain at harvest,
    so honor isn’t appropriate for a fool.
Like a darting sparrow, like a flying swallow,
    so an undeserved curse never arrives.
A whip for a horse, a bridle for a donkey,
    and a rod for the back of fools.
Don’t answer fools according to their folly,
    or you will become like them yourself.
Answer fools according to their folly,
    or they will deem themselves wise.
Sending messages with a fool
    is like cutting off one’s feet or drinking down violence.
As legs dangle from a disabled person,
    so does a proverb in the mouth of fools.
Like tying a stone in a sling,
    so is giving respect to a fool.
Like a thorny bush in the hand of a drunk,
    so is a proverb in the mouth of fools.
10 Like an archer who wounds someone randomly,
    so is one who hires a fool or a passerby.
11 Like a dog that returns to its vomit,
    so a fool repeats foolish mistakes.
12 Do you see people who consider themselves wise?
    There is more hope for a fool than for them.
13 A lazy person says, “There’s a lion in the path!
    A lion in the plazas!”
14 As a door turns on its hinge,
    so do lazy people in their beds.
15 Lazy people bury their hand into the bowl,
    too tired to return it to their mouth.
16 Lazy people think they are wiser
    than seven people who answer sensibly.

17     Like yanking the ears of a dog,
    so is one who passes by and gets involved in another person’s fight.
18 Like a crazy person shooting deadly flaming arrows
19     are those who deceive their neighbor and say, “Hey, I was only joking!”
20 Without wood a fire goes out;
    without gossips, conflict calms down.
21 Like adding charcoal to embers or wood to fire,
    quarrelsome people kindle strife.
22 The words of gossips are like choice snacks;
    they go down to the inmost parts.
23 Smooth[a] lips and an evil heart
    are like silver coating on clay.
24 Hateful people mislead with their lips,
    keeping their deception within.
25 Though they speak graciously, don’t believe them,
    for seven horrible things are in their heart.
26 They may cover their hatred with trickery,
    but their evil will be revealed in public.
27 Those who dig a pit will fall in it;
    those who roll a stone will have it turn back on them.
28 A lying tongue hates those it crushes;
    a flattering mouth causes destruction.

27 Don’t brag about tomorrow,
    for you don’t know what a day will bring.
Let another person praise you, and not your own mouth;
    a stranger, and not your own lips.
A stone is heavy and sand weighs much,
    but the nuisance of fools is heavier than both.
Wrath is cruel and anger is a flood,
    but who can withstand jealousy?
A public correction is better than hidden love.
Trustworthy are the bruises of a friend;
    excessive are the kisses of an enemy.
Someone who is full refuses honey,
    but anything bitter tastes sweet to a hungry person.
Like a bird wandering from its nest,
    so is one who wanders from home.
Oil and incense make the heart glad,
    and the sweetness of friends comes from their advice.[b]
10 Don’t desert your friend or a friend of your family;
    don’t go to your relative’s house when disaster strikes.
    Better a neighbor nearby than a relative far away.
11 Be wise, my child, and make my heart glad,
    so I can answer those who insult me.
12 Prudent people see evil and hide;
    the simpleminded go right to it and get punished.
13 Take the garment of the person who secures a loan for a stranger;
    take his pledge for a foreigner.
14 Greeting a neighbor with a loud voice early in the morning
    will be viewed as a curse.
15 The constant dripping on a rainy day
    and a contentious woman are alike;
16         anyone who can control her
        can control the wind
        or pick up oil in his hand.
17 As iron sharpens iron,
    so friends sharpen each other’s faces.
18 Those who tend a fig tree will eat its fruit,
    and those who look after their master will be honored.
19 As water reflects the face,
    so the heart reflects one person to another.
20 The grave[c] and the underworld[d] are never satisfied;
    and people’s eyes are never satisfied.
21 A crucible is for silver and a furnace for gold,
    so are people in the presence of someone who praises them.
22 Even if you grind fools in a mortar,
    even grinding them along with the grain,
    their folly won’t be driven from them.
23 Know your flock well;
    pay attention to your herds,
24         for no treasure lasts forever,
        nor a crown generation after generation.
25 When the grass goes away, new growth appears,
    and the plants of the hills are gathered,
26         then the lambs will provide your clothes,
        and the goats will be the price of your fields.
27 There will be enough goat’s milk for your food,
    for the food of your house,
    and to nourish your young women.


  1. Proverbs 26:23 LXX; Heb uncertain
  2. Proverbs 27:9 Heb uncertain
  3. Proverbs 27:20 Heb Sheol
  4. Proverbs 27:20 Heb Abaddon
Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

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