These are the proverbs of Solomon, David's son, king of Israel.
The purpose of these proverbs is to teach people wisdom and discipline, and to help them understand wise sayings.
Through these proverbs, people will receive instruction in discipline, good conduct, and doing what is right, just, and fair.
These proverbs will make the simpleminded clever. They will give knowledge and purpose to young people.
Let those who are wise listen to these proverbs and become even wiser. And let those who understand receive guidance
by exploring the depth of meaning in these proverbs, parables, wise sayings, and riddles.
Fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge. Only fools despise wisdom and discipline.
Listen, my child, a to what your father teaches you. Don't neglect your mother's teaching.
What you learn from them will crown you with grace and clothe you with honor.
My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them!
They may say, "Come and join us. Let's hide and kill someone! Let's ambush the innocent!
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.
And the loot we'll get! We'll fill our houses with all kinds of things!
Come on, throw in your lot with us; we'll split our loot with you."
Don't go along with them, my child! Stay far away from their paths.
They rush to commit crimes. They hurry to commit murder.
When a bird sees a trap being set, it stays away.
But not these people! They set an ambush for themselves; they booby-trap their own lives!
Such is the fate of all who are greedy for gain. It ends up robbing them of life.
Wisdom shouts in the streets. She cries out in the public square.
She calls out to the crowds along the main street, and to those in front of city hall.
"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?
Come here and listen to me! I'll pour out the spirit of wisdom upon you and make you wise.
"I called you so often, but you didn't come. I reached out to you, but you paid no attention.
You ignored my advice and rejected the correction I offered.
So I will laugh when you are in trouble! I will mock you when disaster overtakes you --
when calamity overcomes you like a storm, when you are engulfed by trouble, and when anguish and distress overwhelm you.
"I will not answer when they cry for help. Even though they anxiously search for me, they will not find me.
For they hated knowledge and chose not to fear the LORD.
They rejected my advice and paid no attention when I corrected them.
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.
For they are simpletons who turn away from me -- to death. They are fools, and their own complacency will destroy them.
But all who listen to me will live in peace and safety, unafraid of harm."
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)