Holman Christian Standard Bible
5 My son, pay attention to my wisdom;
listen closely[a] to my understanding(A)
2 so that you may maintain discretion
and your lips safeguard knowledge.(B)
3 Though the lips of the forbidden woman drip honey
and her words are[b] smoother than oil,
4 in the end she’s as bitter as wormwood(C)
and as sharp as a double-edged sword.(D)
5 Her feet go down to death;
her steps head straight for Sheol.(E)
6 She doesn’t consider the path of life;
she doesn’t know that her ways are unstable.
7 So now, my sons, listen to me,
and don’t turn away from the words of my mouth.(F)
8 Keep your way far from her.
Don’t go near the door of her house.(G)
9 Otherwise, you will give up your vitality to others
and your years to someone cruel;
10 strangers will drain your resources,
and your earnings will end up in a foreigner’s house.
11 At the end of your life, you will lament
when your physical body has been consumed,
12 and you will say, “How I hated discipline,
and how my heart despised correction.(H)
13 I didn’t obey my teachers
or listen closely[c] to my mentors.
14 I am on the verge of complete ruin
before the entire community.”
15 Drink water from your own cistern,
water flowing from your own well.(I)
16 Should your springs flow in the streets,
streams of water in the public squares?(J)
17 They should be for you alone
and not for you to share with strangers.
18 Let your fountain be blessed,
and take pleasure in the wife of your youth.(K)
19 A loving doe, a graceful fawn—
let her breasts always satisfy you;(L)
be lost in her love forever.
20 Why, my son, would you be infatuated
with a forbidden woman
or embrace the breast of a stranger?(M)
21 For a man’s ways are before the Lord’s eyes,(N)
and He considers all his paths.(O)
22 A wicked man’s iniquities entrap him;(P)
he is entangled in the ropes of his own sin.(Q)
23 He will die because there is no discipline,(R)
and be lost because of his great stupidity.