Proverbs 1:8-33; Proverbs 2:1-22; Proverbs 3:1-35; Proverbs 4:1-27; Proverbs 5:1-23; Proverbs 6:1-35; Proverbs 7:1-27; Proverbs 8:1-36; Proverbs 9:1-18 (New Living Translation)

8 Listen, my child, to what your father teaches you. Don't neglect your mother's teaching. 9 What you learn from them will crown you with grace and clothe you with honor. 10 My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them! 11 They may say, "Come and join us. Let's hide and kill someone! Let's ambush the innocent! 12 Let's swallow them alive as the grave swallows its victims. Though they are in the prime of life, they will go down into the pit of death. 13 And the loot we'll get! We'll fill our houses with all kinds of things! 14 Come on, throw in your lot with us; we'll split our loot with you." 15 Don't go along with them, my child! Stay far away from their paths. 16 They rush to commit crimes. They hurry to commit murder. 17 When a bird sees a trap being set, it stays away. 18 But not these people! They set an ambush for themselves; they booby-trap their own lives! 19 Such is the fate of all who are greedy for gain. It ends up robbing them of life. 20 Wisdom shouts in the streets. She cries out in the public square. 21 She calls out to the crowds along the main street, and to those in front of city hall. 22 "You simpletons!" she cries. "How long will you go on being simpleminded? How long will you mockers relish your mocking? How long will you fools fight the facts? 23 Come here and listen to me! I'll pour out the spirit of wisdom upon you and make you wise. 24 "I called you so often, but you didn't come. I reached out to you, but you paid no attention. 25 You ignored my advice and rejected the correction I offered. 26 So I will laugh when you are in trouble! I will mock you when disaster overtakes you -- 27 when calamity overcomes you like a storm, when you are engulfed by trouble, and when anguish and distress overwhelm you. 28 "I will not answer when they cry for help. Even though they anxiously search for me, they will not find me. 29 For they hated knowledge and chose not to fear the LORD. 30 They rejected my advice and paid no attention when I corrected them. 31 That is why they must eat the bitter fruit of living their own way. They must experience the full terror of the path they have chosen. 32 For they are simpletons who turn away from me -- to death. They are fools, and their own complacency will destroy them. 33 But all who listen to me will live in peace and safety, unafraid of harm." 1 My child, listen to me and treasure my instructions. 2 Tune your ears to wisdom, and concentrate on understanding. 3 Cry out for insight and understanding. 4 Search for them as you would for lost money or hidden treasure. 5 Then you will understand what it means to fear the LORD, and you will gain knowledge of God. 6 For the LORD grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding. 7 He grants a treasure of good sense to the godly. He is their shield, protecting those who walk with integrity. 8 He guards the paths of justice and protects those who are faithful to him. 9 Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will know how to find the right course of action every time. 10 For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy. 11 Wise planning will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe. 12 Wisdom will save you from evil people, from those whose speech is corrupt. 13 These people turn from right ways to walk down dark and evil paths. 14 They rejoice in doing wrong, and they enjoy evil as it turns things upside down. 15 What they do is crooked, and their ways are wrong. 16 Wisdom will save you from the immoral woman, from the flattery of the adulterous woman. 17 She has abandoned her husband and ignores the covenant she made before God. 18 Entering her house leads to death; it is the road to hell. 19 The man who visits her is doomed. He will never reach the paths of life. 20 Follow the steps of good men instead, and stay on the paths of the righteous. 21 For only the upright will live in the land, and those who have integrity will remain in it. 22 But the wicked will be removed from the land, and the treacherous will be destroyed. 1 My child, never forget the things I have taught you. Store my commands in your heart, 2 for they will give you a long and satisfying life. 3 Never let loyalty and kindness get away from you! Wear them like a necklace; write them deep within your heart. 4 Then you will find favor with both God and people, and you will gain a good reputation. 5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6 Seek his will in all you do, and he will direct your paths. 7 Don't be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the LORD and turn your back on evil. 8 Then you will gain renewed health and vitality. 9 Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the best part of everything your land produces. 10 Then he will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with the finest wine. 11 My child, don't ignore it when the LORD disciplines you, and don't be discouraged when he corrects you. 12 For the LORD corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights. 13 Happy is the person who finds wisdom and gains understanding. 14 For the profit of wisdom is better than silver, and her wages are better than gold. 15 Wisdom is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her. 16 She offers you life in her right hand, and riches and honor in her left. 17 She will guide you down delightful paths; all her ways are satisfying. 18 Wisdom is a tree of life to those who embrace her; happy are those who hold her tightly. 19 By wisdom the LORD founded the earth; by understanding he established the heavens. 20 By his knowledge the deep fountains of the earth burst forth, and the clouds poured down rain. 21 My child, don't lose sight of good planning and insight. Hang on to them, 22 for they fill you with life and bring you honor and respect. 23 They keep you safe on your way and keep your feet from stumbling. 24 You can lie down without fear and enjoy pleasant dreams. 25 You need not be afraid of disaster or the destruction that comes upon the wicked, 26 for the LORD is your security. He will keep your foot from being caught in a trap. 27 Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it's in your power to help them. 28 If you can help your neighbor now, don't say, "Come back tomorrow, and then I'll help you." 29 Do not plot against your neighbors, for they trust you. 30 Don't make accusations against someone who hasn't wronged you. 31 Do not envy violent people; don't copy their ways. 32 Such wicked people are an abomination to the LORD, but he offers his friendship to the godly. 33 The curse of the LORD is on the house of the wicked, but his blessing is on the home of the upright. 34 The LORD mocks at mockers, but he shows favor to the humble. 35 The wise inherit honor, but fools are put to shame! 1 My children, listen to me. Listen to your father's instruction. Pay attention and grow wise, 2 for I am giving you good guidance. Don't turn away from my teaching. 3 For I, too, was once my father's son, tenderly loved by my mother as an only child. 4 My father told me, "Take my words to heart. Follow my instructions and you will live. 5 Learn to be wise, and develop good judgment. Don't forget or turn away from my words. 6 Don't turn your back on wisdom, for she will protect you. Love her, and she will guard you. 7 Getting wisdom is the most important thing you can do! And whatever else you do, get good judgment. 8 If you prize wisdom, she will exalt you. Embrace her and she will honor you. 9 She will place a lovely wreath on your head; she will present you with a beautiful crown." 10 My child, listen to me and do as I say, and you will have a long, good life. 11 I will teach you wisdom's ways and lead you in straight paths. 12 If you live a life guided by wisdom, you won't limp or stumble as you run. 13 Carry out my instructions; don't forsake them. Guard them, for they will lead you to a fulfilled life. 14 Do not do as the wicked do or follow the path of evildoers. 15 Avoid their haunts. Turn away and go somewhere else, 16 for evil people cannot sleep until they have done their evil deed for the day. They cannot rest unless they have caused someone to stumble. 17 They eat wickedness and drink violence! 18 The way of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, which shines ever brighter until the full light of day. 19 But the way of the wicked is like complete darkness. Those who follow it have no idea what they are stumbling over. 20 Pay attention, my child, to what I say. Listen carefully. 21 Don't lose sight of my words. Let them penetrate deep within your heart, 22 for they bring life and radiant health to anyone who discovers their meaning. 23 Above all else, guard your heart, for it affects everything you do. 24 Avoid all perverse talk; stay far from corrupt speech. 25 Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. 26 Mark out a straight path for your feet; then stick to the path and stay safe. 27 Don't get sidetracked; keep your feet from following evil. 1 My son, pay attention to my wisdom; listen carefully to my wise counsel. 2 Then you will learn to be discreet and will store up knowledge. 3 The lips of an immoral woman are as sweet as honey, and her mouth is smoother than oil. 4 But the result is as bitter as poison, sharp as a double-edged sword. 5 Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight to the grave. 6 For she does not care about the path to life. She staggers down a crooked trail and doesn't even realize where it leads. 7 So now, my sons, listen to me. Never stray from what I am about to say: 8 Run from her! Don't go near the door of her house! 9 If you do, you will lose your honor and hand over to merciless people everything you have achieved in life. 10 Strangers will obtain your wealth, and someone else will enjoy the fruit of your labor. 11 Afterward you will groan in anguish when disease consumes your body, 12 and you will say, "How I hated discipline! If only I had not demanded my own way! 13 Oh, why didn't I listen to my teachers? Why didn't I pay attention to those who gave me instruction? 14 I have come to the brink of utter ruin, and now I must face public disgrace." 15 Drink water from your own well -- share your love only with your wife. 16 Why spill the water of your springs in public, having sex with just anyone? 17 You should reserve it for yourselves. Don't share it with strangers. 18 Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth. 19 She is a loving doe, a graceful deer. Let her breasts satisfy you always. May you always be captivated by her love. 20 Why be captivated, my son, with an immoral woman, or embrace the breasts of an adulterous woman? 21 For the LORD sees clearly what a man does, examining every path he takes. 22 An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him. 23 He will die for lack of self-control; he will be lost because of his incredible folly. 1 My child, if you co-sign a loan for a friend or guarantee the debt of someone you hardly know -- 2 if you have trapped yourself by your agreement and are caught by what you said -- 3 quick, get out of it if you possibly can! You have placed yourself at your friend's mercy. Now swallow your pride; go and beg to have your name erased. 4 Don't put it off. Do it now! Don't rest until you do. 5 Save yourself like a deer escaping from a hunter, like a bird fleeing from a net. 6 Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones. Learn from their ways and be wise! 7 Even though they have no prince, governor, or ruler to make them work, 8 they labor hard all summer, gathering food for the winter. 9 But you, lazybones, how long will you sleep? When will you wake up? I want you to learn this lesson: 10 A little extra sleep, a little more slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest -- 11 and poverty will pounce on you like a bandit; scarcity will attack you like an armed robber. 12 Here is a description of worthless and wicked people: They are constant liars, 13 signaling their true intentions to their friends by making signs with their eyes and feet and fingers. 14 Their perverted hearts plot evil. They stir up trouble constantly. 15 But they will be destroyed suddenly, broken beyond all hope of healing. 16 There are six things the LORD hates -- no, seven things he detests: 17 haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that kill the innocent, 18 a heart that plots evil, feet that race to do wrong, 19 a false witness who pours out lies, a person who sows discord among brothers. 20 My son, obey your father's commands, and don't neglect your mother's teaching. 21 Keep their words always in your heart. Tie them around your neck. 22 Wherever you walk, their counsel can lead you. When you sleep, they will protect you. When you wake up in the morning, they will advise you. 23 For these commands and this teaching are a lamp to light the way ahead of you. The correction of discipline is the way to life. 24 These commands and this teaching will keep you from the immoral woman, from the smooth tongue of an adulterous woman. 25 Don't lust for her beauty. Don't let her coyness seduce you. 26 For a prostitute will bring you to poverty, and sleeping with another man's wife may cost you your very life. 27 Can a man scoop fire into his lap and not be burned? 28 Can he walk on hot coals and not blister his feet? 29 So it is with the man who sleeps with another man's wife. He who embraces her will not go unpunished. 30 Excuses might be found for a thief who steals because he is starving. 31 But if he is caught, he will be fined seven times as much as he stole, even if it means selling everything in his house to pay it back. 32 But the man who commits adultery is an utter fool, for he destroys his own soul. 33 Wounds and constant disgrace are his lot. His shame will never be erased. 34 For the woman's husband will be furious in his jealousy, and he will have no mercy in his day of vengeance. 35 There is no compensation or bribe that will satisfy him. 1 Follow my advice, my son; always treasure my commands. 2 Obey them and live! Guard my teachings as your most precious possession. 3 Tie them on your fingers as a reminder. Write them deep within your heart. 4 Love wisdom like a sister; make insight a beloved member of your family. 5 Let them hold you back from an affair with an immoral woman, from listening to the flattery of an adulterous woman. 6 I was looking out the window of my house one day 7 and saw a simpleminded young man who lacked common sense. 8 He was crossing the street near the house of an immoral woman. He was strolling down the path by her house 9 at twilight, as the day was fading, as the dark of night set in. 10 The woman approached him, dressed seductively and sly of heart. 11 She was the brash, rebellious type who never stays at home. 12 She is often seen in the streets and markets, soliciting at every corner. 13 She threw her arms around him and kissed him, and with a brazen look she said, 14 "I've offered my sacrifices and just finished my vows. 15 It's you I was looking for! I came out to find you, and here you are! 16 My bed is spread with colored sheets of finest linen imported from Egypt. 17 I've perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. 18 Come, let's drink our fill of love until morning. Let's enjoy each other's caresses, 19 for my husband is not home. He's away on a long trip. 20 He has taken a wallet full of money with him, and he won't return until later in the month." 21 So she seduced him with her pretty speech. With her flattery she enticed him. 22 He followed her at once, like an ox going to the slaughter or like a trapped stag, 23 awaiting the arrow that would pierce its heart. He was like a bird flying into a snare, little knowing it would cost him his life. 24 Listen to me, my sons, and pay attention to my words. 25 Don't let your hearts stray away toward her. Don't wander down her wayward path. 26 For she has been the ruin of many; numerous men have been her victims. 27 Her house is the road to the grave. Her bedroom is the den of death. 1 Listen as wisdom calls out! Hear as understanding raises her voice! 2 She stands on the hilltop and at the crossroads. 3 At the entrance to the city, at the city gates, she cries aloud, 4 "I call to you, to all of you! I am raising my voice to all people. 5 How naive you are! Let me give you common sense. O foolish ones, let me give you understanding. 6 Listen to me! For I have excellent things to tell you. Everything I say is right, 7 for I speak the truth and hate every kind of deception. 8 My advice is wholesome and good. There is nothing crooked or twisted in it. 9 My words are plain to anyone with understanding, clear to those who want to learn." 10 "Choose my instruction rather than silver, and knowledge over pure gold. 11 For wisdom is far more valuable than rubies. Nothing you desire can be compared with it." 12 "I, Wisdom, live together with good judgment. I know where to discover knowledge and discernment. 13 All who fear the LORD will hate evil. That is why I hate pride, arrogance, corruption, and perverted speech. 14 Good advice and success belong to me. Insight and strength are mine. 15 Because of me, kings reign, and rulers make just laws. 16 Rulers lead with my help, and nobles make righteous judgments." 17 "I love all who love me. Those who search for me will surely find me. 18 Unending riches, honor, wealth, and justice are mine to distribute. 19 My gifts are better than the purest gold, my wages better than sterling silver! 20 I walk in righteousness, in paths of justice. 21 Those who love me inherit wealth, for I fill their treasuries." 22 "The LORD formed me from the beginning, before he created anything else. 23 I was appointed in ages past, at the very first, before the earth began. 24 I was born before the oceans were created, before the springs bubbled forth their waters. 25 Before the mountains and the hills were formed, I was born -- 26 before he had made the earth and fields and the first handfuls of soil." 27 "I was there when he established the heavens, when he drew the horizon on the oceans. 28 I was there when he set the clouds above, when he established the deep fountains of the earth. 29 I was there when he set the limits of the seas, so they would not spread beyond their boundaries. And when he marked off the earth's foundations, 30 I was the architect at his side. I was his constant delight, rejoicing always in his presence. 31 And how happy I was with what he created -- his wide world and all the human family!" 32 "And so, my children, listen to me, for happy are all who follow my ways. 33 Listen to my counsel and be wise. Don't ignore it." 34 "Happy are those who listen to me, watching for me daily at my gates, waiting for me outside my home! 35 For whoever finds me finds life and wins approval from the LORD. 36 But those who miss me have injured themselves. All who hate me love death." 1 Wisdom has built her spacious house with seven pillars. 2 She has prepared a great banquet, mixed the wines, and set the table. 3 She has sent her servants to invite everyone to come. She calls out from the heights overlooking the city. 4 "Come home with me," she urges the simple. To those without good judgment, she says, 5 "Come, eat my food, and drink the wine I have mixed. 6 Leave your foolish ways behind, and begin to live; learn how to be wise." 7 Anyone who rebukes a mocker will get a smart retort. Anyone who rebukes the wicked will get hurt. 8 So don't bother rebuking mockers; they will only hate you. But the wise, when rebuked, will love you all the more. 9 Teach the wise, and they will be wiser. Teach the righteous, and they will learn more. 10 Fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom. Knowledge of the Holy One results in understanding. 11 Wisdom will multiply your days and add years to your life. 12 If you become wise, you will be the one to benefit. If you scorn wisdom, you will be the one to suffer. 13 The woman named Folly is loud and brash. She is ignorant and doesn't even know it. 14 She sits in her doorway on the heights overlooking the city. 15 She calls out to men going by who are minding their own business. 16 "Come home with me," she urges the simple. To those without good judgment, she says, 17 "Stolen water is refreshing; food eaten in secret tastes the best!" 18 But the men don't realize that her former guests are now in the grave.
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