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Proverbs 20 (New Century Version)

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1 Wine and beer make people loud and uncontrolled; it is not wise to get drunk on them. 2 An angry king is like a roaring lion. Making him angry may cost you your life. 3 Foolish people are always fighting, but avoiding quarrels will bring you honor. 4 Lazy farmers don't plow when they should; they expect a harvest, but there is none. 5 People's thoughts can be like a deep well, but someone with understanding can find the wisdom there. 6 Many people claim to be loyal, but it is hard to find a trustworthy person. 7 The good people who live honest lives will be a blessing to their children. 8 When a king sits on his throne to judge, he knows evil when he sees it. 9 No one can say, "I am innocent; I have never done anything wrong." 10 The Lord hates both these things: dishonest weights and dishonest measures. 11 Even children are known by their behavior; their actions show if they are innocent and good. 12 The Lord has made both these things: ears to hear and eyes to see. 13 If you love to sleep, you will be poor. If you stay awake, you will have plenty of food. 14 Buyers say, "This is bad. It's no good." Then they go away and brag about what they bought. 15 There is gold and plenty of rubies, but only a few people speak with knowledge. 16 Take the coat of someone who promises to pay a stranger's debts, and keep it until he pays what the stranger owes. 17 Stolen food may taste sweet at first, but later it will feel like a mouth full of gravel. 18 Get advice if you want your plans to work. If you go to war, get the advice of others. 19 Gossips can't keep secrets, so avoid people who talk too much. 20 Those who curse their father or mother will be like a light going out in darkness. 21 Wealth inherited quickly in the beginning will do you no good in the end. 22 Don't say, "I'll pay you back for the wrong you did." Wait for the Lord, and he will make things right. 23 The Lord hates dishonest weights, and dishonest scales do not please him. 24 The Lord decides what a person will do; no one understands what his life is all about. 25 It's dangerous to promise something to God too quickly. After you've thought about it, it may be too late. 26 A wise king sorts out the evil people, and he punishes them as they deserve. 27 The Lord looks deep inside people and searches through their thoughts. 28 Loyalty and truth keep a king in power; he continues to rule if he is loyal. 29 Young men glory in their strength, and old men are honored for their gray hair. 30 Hard punishment will get rid of evil, and whippings can change an evil heart.
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