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The Beginning of Knowledge

1 1The proverbs of Solomon, son of David, king of Israel:
2 To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight,
3 to receive instruction in wise dealing, in 2righteousness, justice, and equity;

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4 to give prudence to 3the simple, knowledge and 4discretion to the youth--
5 Let the wise hear and 5increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance,

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6 to understand a proverb and a saying, 6the words of the wise and their 7riddles.

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7 8The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.

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The Enticement of Sinners

8 9Hear, my son, your father's instruction, and forsake not your mother's teaching,

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9 for they are 10a graceful garland for your head and 11pendants for your neck.

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10 My son, if sinners 12entice you, do not consent.

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11 If they say, "Come with us, 13let us lie in wait for blood; 14let us ambush the innocent without reason;

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12 like Sheol let us 15swallow them alive, and whole, like 16those who go down to the pit;

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13 we shall find all precious goods, we shall fill our houses with plunder;
14 throw in your lot among us; we will all have one purse"--
15 my son, 17do not walk in the way with them; 18hold back your foot from their paths,

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16 for 19their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed blood.

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17 20For in vain is a net spread in the sight of any bird,

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18 but these men 21lie in wait for their own blood; they 22set an ambush for their own lives.

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      19 23Such are the ways of everyone who is 24greedy for unjust gain; 25it takes away the life of its possessors.

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      The Call of Wisdom

      20 26Wisdom cries aloud in the street, in the markets she raises her voice;

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      21 at the head of the noisy streets she cries out; at 27the entrance of the city gates she speaks:

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      22 "How long, O 28simple ones, will you love being simple? How long will 29scoffers delight in their scoffing and fools 30hate knowledge?

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          23 If you turn at my reproof,a behold, I will 31pour out my spirit to you; I will make my words known to you.

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            • a 1:23 - Or Will you turn away at my reproof?
              24 32Because I have called and 33you refused to listen, have 34stretched out my hand and no one has heeded,

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              25 because you have 35ignored all my counsel and 36would have none of my reproof,

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              26 I also 37will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when 38terror strikes you,

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              27 when terror strikes you like 39a storm and your calamity comes like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you.

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              28 40Then they will call upon me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently but will not find me.

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              29 Because they 41hated knowledge and 42did not choose the fear of the LORD,

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                  30 43would have none of my counsel and 44despised all my reproof,

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                    • 43 1:30 - [See ver. 25 above]
                    • 44 1:30 - [See ver. 25 above]
                      31 therefore they shall eat 45the fruit of their way, and have 46their fill of their own devices.

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                      32 For the simple are killed by 47their turning away, and 48the complacency of fools destroys them;

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                      33 but 49whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be 50at ease, without dread of disaster."

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