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Proverbs 4 (English Standard Version)

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A Father's Wise Instruction

1 1Hear, O sons, a father's instruction, and be attentive, that you may 2gaina insight, 2 for I give you good 3precepts; do not forsake my teaching. 3 When I was a son with my father, 4tender, 5the only one in the sight of my mother, 4 he 6taught me and said to me, 7"Let your heart hold fast my words; 8keep my commandments, and live. 5 9Get wisdom; get 10insight; do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth. 6 Do not forsake her, and she will keep you; 11love her, and she will guard you. 7 12The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom, and whatever you get, get 13insight. 8 Prize her highly, and she will exalt you; she will 14honor you 15if you embrace her. 9 She will place on your head 16a graceful garland; she will bestow on you a beautiful crown." 10 17Hear, 18my son, and accept my words, that 19the years of your life may be many. 11 I have 20taught you the way of wisdom; I have led you in the paths of uprightness. 12 When you walk, 21your step will not be hampered, and 22if you run, you will not stumble. 13 23Keep hold of instruction; do not let go; guard her, for she is your 24life. 14 25Do not enter the path of the wicked, and do not walk in the way of the evil. 15 Avoid it; do not go on it; turn away from it and pass on. 16 For they 26cannot sleep unless they have done wrong; they are robbed of sleep unless they have made someone stumble. 17 For they eat the bread of wickedness 27and drink the wine of violence. 18 But 28the path of the righteous is like 29the light of dawn, which shines 30brighter and brighter until 31full day. 19 32The way of the wicked is like deep 33darkness; they do not know over what they 34stumble. 20 35My son, be attentive to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. 21 36Let them not escape from your sight; 37keep them within your heart. 22 For they are 38life to those who find them, and healing to all theirb flesh. 23 Keep your heart with all vigilance, for 39from it flow 40the springs of life. 24 Put away from you 41crooked speech, and put 42devious talk far from you. 25 43Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. 26 44Ponderc the path of your feet; 45then all your ways will be sure. 27 46Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.
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