Sayings of Agur

30 The sayings(A) of Agur son of Jakeh—an inspired utterance.

This man’s utterance to Ithiel:

“I am weary, God,
    but I can prevail.[a]
Surely I am only a brute, not a man;
    I do not have human understanding.
I have not learned wisdom,
    nor have I attained to the knowledge of the Holy One.(B)
Who has gone up(C) to heaven and come down?
    Whose hands(D) have gathered up the wind?
Who has wrapped up the waters(E) in a cloak?(F)
    Who has established all the ends of the earth?
What is his name,(G) and what is the name of his son?
    Surely you know!

“Every word of God is flawless;(H)
    he is a shield(I) to those who take refuge in him.
Do not add(J) to his words,
    or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.

“Two things I ask of you, Lord;
    do not refuse me before I die:
Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
    give me neither poverty nor riches,
    but give me only my daily bread.(K)
Otherwise, I may have too much and disown(L) you
    and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’(M)
Or I may become poor and steal,
    and so dishonor the name of my God.(N)

10 “Do not slander a servant to their master,
    or they will curse you, and you will pay for it.

11 “There are those who curse their fathers
    and do not bless their mothers;(O)
12 those who are pure in their own eyes(P)
    and yet are not cleansed of their filth;(Q)
13 those whose eyes are ever so haughty,(R)
    whose glances are so disdainful;
14 those whose teeth(S) are swords
    and whose jaws are set with knives(T)
to devour(U) the poor(V) from the earth
    and the needy from among mankind.(W)

15 “The leech has two daughters.
    ‘Give! Give!’ they cry.

“There are three things that are never satisfied,(X)
    four that never say, ‘Enough!’:
16 the grave,(Y) the barren womb,
    land, which is never satisfied with water,
    and fire, which never says, ‘Enough!’

17 “The eye that mocks(Z) a father,
    that scorns an aged mother,
will be pecked out by the ravens of the valley,
    will be eaten by the vultures.(AA)

18 “There are three things that are too amazing for me,
    four that I do not understand:
19 the way of an eagle in the sky,
    the way of a snake on a rock,
the way of a ship on the high seas,
    and the way of a man with a young woman.

20 “This is the way of an adulterous woman:
    She eats and wipes her mouth
    and says, ‘I’ve done nothing wrong.’(AB)

21 “Under three things the earth trembles,
    under four it cannot bear up:
22 a servant who becomes king,(AC)
    a godless fool who gets plenty to eat,
23 a contemptible woman who gets married,
    and a servant who displaces her mistress.

24 “Four things on earth are small,
    yet they are extremely wise:
25 Ants are creatures of little strength,
    yet they store up their food in the summer;(AD)
26 hyraxes(AE) are creatures of little power,
    yet they make their home in the crags;
27 locusts(AF) have no king,
    yet they advance together in ranks;
28 a lizard can be caught with the hand,
    yet it is found in kings’ palaces.

29 “There are three things that are stately in their stride,
    four that move with stately bearing:
30 a lion, mighty among beasts,
    who retreats before nothing;
31 a strutting rooster, a he-goat,
    and a king secure against revolt.[b]

32 “If you play the fool and exalt yourself,
    or if you plan evil,
    clap your hand over your mouth!(AG)
33 For as churning cream produces butter,
    and as twisting the nose produces blood,
    so stirring up anger produces strife.”

Footnotes

  1. Proverbs 30:1 With a different word division of the Hebrew; Masoretic Text utterance to Ithiel, / to Ithiel and Ukal:
  2. Proverbs 30:31 The meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain.

Sayings of King Lemuel

31 The sayings(A) of King Lemuel—an inspired utterance his mother taught him.

Listen, my son! Listen, son of my womb!
    Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!(B)
Do not spend your strength[a] on women,
    your vigor on those who ruin kings.(C)

It is not for kings, Lemuel—
    it is not for kings to drink wine,(D)
    not for rulers to crave beer,
lest they drink(E) and forget what has been decreed,(F)
    and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.
Let beer be for those who are perishing,
    wine(G) for those who are in anguish!
Let them drink(H) and forget their poverty
    and remember their misery no more.

Speak(I) up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
    for the rights of all who are destitute.
Speak up and judge fairly;
    defend the rights of the poor and needy.(J)

Epilogue: The Wife of Noble Character

10 [b]A wife of noble character(K) who can find?(L)
    She is worth far more than rubies.
11 Her husband(M) has full confidence in her
    and lacks nothing of value.(N)
12 She brings him good, not harm,
    all the days of her life.
13 She selects wool and flax
    and works with eager hands.(O)
14 She is like the merchant ships,
    bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still night;
    she provides food for her family
    and portions for her female servants.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
    out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She sets about her work vigorously;
    her arms are strong for her tasks.
18 She sees that her trading is profitable,
    and her lamp does not go out at night.
19 In her hand she holds the distaff
    and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
20 She opens her arms to the poor
    and extends her hands to the needy.(P)
21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
    for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
22 She makes coverings for her bed;
    she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is respected at the city gate,
    where he takes his seat among the elders(Q) of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
    and supplies the merchants with sashes.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;
    she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom,
    and faithful instruction is on her tongue.(R)
27 She watches over the affairs of her household
    and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
    her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women do noble things,
    but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Honor her for all that her hands have done,
    and let her works bring her praise(S) at the city gate.

Footnotes

  1. Proverbs 31:3 Or wealth
  2. Proverbs 31:10 Verses 10-31 are an acrostic poem, the verses of which begin with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet.

Psalm 33

Sing joyfully(A) to the Lord, you righteous;
    it is fitting(B) for the upright(C) to praise him.
Praise the Lord with the harp;(D)
    make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre.(E)
Sing to him a new song;(F)
    play skillfully, and shout for joy.(G)

For the word of the Lord is right(H) and true;(I)
    he is faithful(J) in all he does.
The Lord loves righteousness and justice;(K)
    the earth is full of his unfailing love.(L)

By the word(M) of the Lord the heavens were made,(N)
    their starry host(O) by the breath of his mouth.
He gathers the waters(P) of the sea into jars[a];(Q)
    he puts the deep into storehouses.
Let all the earth fear the Lord;(R)
    let all the people of the world(S) revere him.(T)
For he spoke, and it came to be;
    he commanded,(U) and it stood firm.

10 The Lord foils(V) the plans(W) of the nations;(X)
    he thwarts the purposes of the peoples.
11 But the plans of the Lord stand firm(Y) forever,
    the purposes(Z) of his heart through all generations.

12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,(AA)
    the people he chose(AB) for his inheritance.(AC)
13 From heaven the Lord looks down(AD)
    and sees all mankind;(AE)
14 from his dwelling place(AF) he watches
    all who live on earth—
15 he who forms(AG) the hearts of all,
    who considers everything they do.(AH)

16 No king is saved by the size of his army;(AI)
    no warrior escapes by his great strength.
17 A horse(AJ) is a vain hope for deliverance;
    despite all its great strength it cannot save.
18 But the eyes(AK) of the Lord are on those who fear him,
    on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,(AL)
19 to deliver them from death(AM)
    and keep them alive in famine.(AN)

20 We wait(AO) in hope for the Lord;
    he is our help and our shield.
21 In him our hearts rejoice,(AP)
    for we trust in his holy name.(AQ)
22 May your unfailing love(AR) be with us, Lord,
    even as we put our hope in you.

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 33:7 Or sea as into a heap

Paul, an apostle(A) of Christ Jesus by the will of God,(B)

To God’s holy people(C) in Ephesus,[a](D) the faithful(E) in Christ Jesus:

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.(F)

Praise for Spiritual Blessings in Christ

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,(G) who has blessed us in the heavenly realms(H) with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us(I) in him before the creation of the world(J) to be holy and blameless(K) in his sight. In love(L) he[b] predestined(M) us for adoption to sonship[c](N) through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure(O) and will— to the praise of his glorious grace,(P) which he has freely given us in the One he loves.(Q) In him we have redemption(R) through his blood,(S) the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches(T) of God’s grace that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, he[d] made known to us the mystery(U) of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed(V) in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment(W)—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.(X)

11 In him we were also chosen,[e] having been predestined(Y) according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose(Z) of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory.(AA) 13 And you also were included in Christ(AB) when you heard the message of truth,(AC) the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal,(AD) the promised Holy Spirit,(AE) 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance(AF) until the redemption(AG) of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.(AH)

Thanksgiving and Prayer

15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus(AI) and your love for all God’s people,(AJ) 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you,(AK) remembering you in my prayers.(AL) 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father,(AM) may give you the Spirit[f] of wisdom(AN) and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened(AO) in order that you may know the hope to which he has called(AP) you, the riches(AQ) of his glorious inheritance(AR) in his holy people,(AS) 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power(AT) is the same as the mighty strength(AU) 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead(AV) and seated him at his right hand(AW) in the heavenly realms,(AX) 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion,(AY) and every name(AZ) that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.(BA) 22 And God placed all things under his feet(BB) and appointed him to be head(BC) over everything for the church, 23 which is his body,(BD) the fullness of him(BE) who fills everything in every way.(BF)

Footnotes

  1. Ephesians 1:1 Some early manuscripts do not have in Ephesus.
  2. Ephesians 1:5 Or sight in love. He
  3. Ephesians 1:5 The Greek word for adoption to sonship is a legal term referring to the full legal standing of an adopted male heir in Roman culture.
  4. Ephesians 1:9 Or us with all wisdom and understanding. And he
  5. Ephesians 1:11 Or were made heirs
  6. Ephesians 1:17 Or a spirit

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