31 The words of King Lemuel— a pronouncement with which his mother encouraged him.
2 No,[a] my son! No,[b] my son whom I conceived![c] No,[d] my son to whom I gave birth![e] 3 Never devote all your energy to sex,[f] or dedicate your life[g] to destroying kings. 4 It is not for kings, Lemuel— Not for kings to drink wine or for rulers to desire liquor. 5 Otherwise, they may drink and forget what has been ordained, perverting justice for all the oppressed.
6 Give liquor to someone who is perishing, and wine to someone who is deeply depressed.[h] 7 Let him drink, forget his poverty, and remember his troubles no more.
8 Speak for those who cannot speak; seek justice for all those on the verge of destruction.[i] 9 Speak up, judge righteously, and defend the rights of the afflicted and oppressed.
The Honorable Woman
10 Who can find a capable wife? Her value far exceeds the finest jewels. 11 Her husband has full confidence in her; as a result, he lacks nothing of value. 12 She will bring good to him—never evil— every day of her life. 13 She seeks out wool and flax, working with eager hands. 14 She is like a seagoing ship that brings her food from far away. 15 She rises while it is still night, preparing meals for her family and providing for her women servants. 16 She evaluates a field and purchases it; from the proceeds she plants a vineyard. 17 She clothes herself with fortitude, and fortifies her arms with strength. 18 She is confident that her profits are sufficient. Her lamp does not go out at night. 19 She works with her own hands on her clothes[j]— her hands work the sewing spindle. 20 She reaches out to the poor, opening her hands to those in need. 21 She is unafraid of winter’s effect on[k] her household, because all of them are warmly clothed.[l] 22 She creates her own bedding, using fine linen and violet cloth. 23 Her husband is well known;[m] he sits among the leaders of the land. 24 She designs and sells linen garments, supplying accessories[n] to clothiers. 25 Strength and dignity are her garments; she smiles about the future. 26 She speaks wisely, teaching with gracious love. 27 She looks discretely to the affairs of her household, and she is never lazy.[o] 28 Her children stand up and encourage her, as does her husband, who praises her: 29 “Many women have done wonderful things,” he says,[p] “but you surpass all of them!”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty fades; but a woman who fears the Lord will be praised. 31 Reward her for her work— let her actions result in public praise.[q]
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