Sons, listen to your father’s discipline, and pay attention in order to gain understanding. 2 After all, I have taught you well. Do not abandon my teachings. 3 When I was a boy learning from my father, when I was a tender and only child of my mother, 4 they used to teach me and say to me, “Cling to my words wholeheartedly. Obey my commands so that you may live. 5 Acquire wisdom. Acquire understanding. Do not forget. Do not turn away from the words that I have spoken. 6 Do not abandon wisdom, and it will watch over you. Love wisdom, and it will protect you. 7 The beginning of wisdom is to acquire wisdom. Acquire understanding with all that you have. 8 Cherish wisdom. It will raise you up. It will bring you honor when you embrace it. 9 It will give you a graceful garland for your head. It will hand you a beautiful crown.”
Stay on the Path of Wisdom
10 My son, listen and accept my words, and they will multiply the years of your life. 11 I have taught you the way of wisdom. I have guided you along decent paths. 12 When you walk, your stride will not be hampered. Even if you run, you will not stumble.
13 Cling to discipline. Do not relax your grip on it. Keep it because it is your life. 14 Do not stray onto the path of wicked people. Do not walk in the way of evil people. 15 Avoid it. Do not walk near it. Turn away from it, and keep on walking. 16 Wicked people cannot sleep unless they do wrong, and they are robbed of their sleep unless they make someone stumble. 17 They eat food obtained through wrongdoing and drink wine obtained through violence.
18 But the path of righteous people is like the light of dawn that becomes brighter and brighter until it reaches midday. 19 The way of wicked people is like deep darkness. They do not know what makes them stumble.
Stay Focused on Wisdom
20 My son, pay attention to my words. Open your ears to what I say. 21 Do not lose sight of these things. Keep them deep within your heart 22 because they are life to those who find them and they heal the whole body. 23 Guard your heart more than anything else, because the source of your life flows from it. 24 Remove dishonesty from your mouth. Put deceptive speech far away from your lips. 25 Let your eyes look straight ahead and your sight be focused in front of you. 26 Carefully walk a straight path, and all your ways will be secure. 27 Do not lean to the right or to the left. Walk away from evil.
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