Parental Counsel

My son, if you have become a (A)guarantor for your neighbor,
Or have given a handshake for a stranger,
If you have been ensnared by the words of your mouth,
Or caught by the words of your mouth,
Then do this, my son, and save yourself:
Since you have come into the [a]hand of your neighbor,
Go, humble yourself, and be urgent with your neighbor to free yourself.
Give no (B)sleep to your eyes,
Nor slumber to your eyelids;
Save yourself like a gazelle from the hunter’s hand,
And like a (C)bird from the hand of the fowler.

Go to the (D)ant, you [b](E)lazy one,
Observe its ways and be wise,
Which, having (F)no chief,
Officer, or ruler,
Prepares its food (G)in the summer
And gathers its provision in the harvest.
How long will you lie down, you [c]lazy one?
When will you arise from your sleep?
10 (H)A little sleep, a little slumber,
A little folding of the hands to [d]rest,”
11 (I)Then your poverty will come in like a [e]drifter,
And your need like [f]an armed man.

12 A (J)worthless person, a wicked man,
Is one who walks with a (K)perverse mouth,
13 Who (L)winks with his eyes, who [g]signals with his feet,
Who [h]points with his fingers;
14 Who, with (M)perversion in his heart, continually (N)devises evil,
Who [i](O)spreads strife.
15 Therefore (P)his disaster will come suddenly;
(Q)Instantly he will be broken and there will be (R)no healing.

16 There are six things that the Lord hates,
Seven that are an abomination [j]to Him:
17 (S)Haughty eyes, a (T)lying tongue,
And hands that (U)shed innocent blood,
18 A heart that devises (V)wicked plans,
(W)Feet that run rapidly to evil,
19 A (X)false witness who declares lies,
And one who [k](Y)spreads strife among brothers.

20 (Z)My son, comply with the commandment of your father,
And do not ignore the [l]teaching of your mother;
21 (AA)Bind them continually on your heart;
Tie them around your neck.
22 When you (AB)walk, [m]they will guide you;
When you sleep, [n]they will watch over you;
And when you awake, [o]they will talk to you.
23 For (AC)the commandment is a lamp and the [p]teaching is light;
And rebukes for discipline are the way of life
24 To (AD)keep you from the evil woman,
From the smooth tongue of the foreign woman.
25 (AE)Do not desire her beauty in your heart,
Nor let her capture you with her (AF)eyelids.
26 For (AG)the price of a prostitute reduces one to a loaf of bread,
And [q]an adulteress (AH)hunts for a precious life.
27 Can anyone take fire in his lap
And his clothes not be burned?
28 Or can a person walk on hot coals
And his feet not be scorched?
29 So is the one who (AI)goes in to his neighbor’s wife;
Whoever touches her (AJ)will not [r]go unpunished.
30 People do not despise a thief if he steals
To (AK)satisfy [s]himself when he is hungry;
31 But when he is found, he must (AL)repay seven times as much;
He must give up all the property of his house.
32 One who commits adultery with a woman is (AM)lacking [t]sense;
He who would (AN)destroy [u]himself commits it.
33 He will find wounds and disgrace,
And his shame will not be removed.
34 For (AO)jealousy [v]enrages a man,
And he will not have compassion on the (AP)day of vengeance.
35 He will not [w]accept any settlement,
Nor will he be [x]satisfied though you make it a large gift.


  1. Proverbs 6:3 Lit palm
  2. Proverbs 6:6 Lit idle one
  3. Proverbs 6:9 Lit idle one
  4. Proverbs 6:10 Lit lie down
  5. Proverbs 6:11 Lit one who moves about
  6. Proverbs 6:11 Lit a man with a shield
  7. Proverbs 6:13 Lit scrapes
  8. Proverbs 6:13 Lit instructs with
  9. Proverbs 6:14 Lit sends out
  10. Proverbs 6:16 Lit of His soul
  11. Proverbs 6:19 Lit sends out
  12. Proverbs 6:20 Or law
  13. Proverbs 6:22 Lit she
  14. Proverbs 6:22 Lit she
  15. Proverbs 6:22 Lit she
  16. Proverbs 6:23 Or law
  17. Proverbs 6:26 Lit a man’s wife
  18. Proverbs 6:29 Lit be innocent
  19. Proverbs 6:30 Lit his soul
  20. Proverbs 6:32 Lit heart
  21. Proverbs 6:32 Lit his soul
  22. Proverbs 6:34 Lit is the rage of
  23. Proverbs 6:35 Lit lift up the face of any
  24. Proverbs 6:35 Lit willing

Warnings Against Folly

My son,(A) if you have put up security(B) for your neighbor,(C)
    if you have shaken hands in pledge(D) for a stranger,
you have been trapped by what you said,
    ensnared by the words of your mouth.
So do this, my son, to free yourself,
    since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands:
Go—to the point of exhaustion—[a]
    and give your neighbor no rest!
Allow no sleep to your eyes,
    no slumber to your eyelids.(E)
Free yourself, like a gazelle(F) from the hand of the hunter,(G)
    like a bird from the snare of the fowler.(H)

Go to the ant, you sluggard;(I)
    consider its ways and be wise!
It has no commander,
    no overseer or ruler,
yet it stores its provisions in summer(J)
    and gathers its food at harvest.(K)

How long will you lie there, you sluggard?(L)
    When will you get up from your sleep?
10 A little sleep, a little slumber,
    a little folding of the hands to rest(M)
11 and poverty(N) will come on you like a thief
    and scarcity like an armed man.

12 A troublemaker and a villain,
    who goes about with a corrupt mouth,
13     who winks maliciously with his eye,(O)
    signals with his feet
    and motions with his fingers,(P)
14     who plots evil(Q) with deceit in his heart—
    he always stirs up conflict.(R)
15 Therefore disaster will overtake him in an instant;(S)
    he will suddenly(T) be destroyed—without remedy.(U)

16 There are six things the Lord hates,(V)
    seven that are detestable to him:
17         haughty eyes,(W)
        a lying tongue,(X)
        hands that shed innocent blood,(Y)
18         a heart that devises wicked schemes,
        feet that are quick to rush into evil,(Z)
19         a false witness(AA) who pours out lies(AB)
        and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.(AC)

Warning Against Adultery

20 My son,(AD) keep your father’s command
    and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.(AE)
21 Bind them always on your heart;
    fasten them around your neck.(AF)
22 When you walk, they will guide you;
    when you sleep, they will watch over you;
    when you awake, they will speak to you.
23 For this command is a lamp,
    this teaching is a light,(AG)
and correction and instruction
    are the way to life,(AH)
24 keeping you from your neighbor’s wife,
    from the smooth talk of a wayward woman.(AI)

25 Do not lust in your heart after her beauty
    or let her captivate you with her eyes.

26 For a prostitute can be had for a loaf of bread,
    but another man’s wife preys on your very life.(AJ)
27 Can a man scoop fire into his lap
    without his clothes being burned?
28 Can a man walk on hot coals
    without his feet being scorched?
29 So is he who sleeps(AK) with another man’s wife;(AL)
    no one who touches her will go unpunished.

30 People do not despise a thief if he steals
    to satisfy his hunger when he is starving.
31 Yet if he is caught, he must pay sevenfold,(AM)
    though it costs him all the wealth of his house.
32 But a man who commits adultery(AN) has no sense;(AO)
    whoever does so destroys himself.
33 Blows and disgrace are his lot,
    and his shame will never(AP) be wiped away.

34 For jealousy(AQ) arouses a husband’s fury,(AR)
    and he will show no mercy when he takes revenge.
35 He will not accept any compensation;
    he will refuse a bribe, however great it is.(AS)


  1. Proverbs 6:3 Or Go and humble yourself,