1 These are other proverbs of Solomon that the officials of King Hezekiah of Judah copied. 2 It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out. 3 Like the heavens for height, like the earth for depth, so the mind of kings is unsearchable. 4 Take away the dross from the silver, and the smith has material for a vessel; 5 take away the wicked from the presence of the king, and his throne will be established in righteousness. 6 Do not put yourself forward in the king's presence or stand in the place of the great; 7 for it is better to be told, "Come up here," than to be put lower in the presence of a noble. What your eyes have seen 8 do not hastily bring into court; for what will you do in the end, when your neighbor puts you to shame? 9 Argue your case with your neighbor directly, and do not disclose another's secret; 10 or else someone who hears you will bring shame upon you, and your ill repute will have no end. 11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver. 12 Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold is a wise rebuke to a listening ear. 13 Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest are faithful messengers to those who send them; they refresh the spirit of their masters. 14 Like clouds and wind without rain is one who boasts of a gift never given. 15 With patience a ruler may be persuaded, and a soft tongue can break bones. 16 If you have found honey, eat only enough for you, or else, having too much, you will vomit it. 17 Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor's house, otherwise the neighbor will become weary of you and hate you. 18 Like a war club, a sword, or a sharp arrow is one who bears false witness against a neighbor. 19 Like a bad tooth or a lame foot is trust in a faithless person in time of trouble. 20 Like vinegar on a wound is one who sings songs to a heavy heart. Like a moth in clothing or a worm in wood, sorrow gnaws at the human heart. 21 If your enemies are hungry, give them bread to eat; and if they are thirsty, give them water to drink; 22 for you will heap coals of fire on their heads, and the Lord will reward you. 23 The north wind produces rain, and a backbiting tongue, angry looks. 24 It is better to live in a corner of the housetop than in a house shared with a contentious wife. 25 Like cold water to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country. 26 Like a muddied spring or a polluted fountain are the righteous who give way before the wicked. 27 It is not good to eat much honey, or to seek honor on top of honor. 28 Like a city breached, without walls, is one who lacks self-control.
1 Like snow in summer or rain in harvest, so honor is not fitting for a fool. 2 Like a sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying, an undeserved curse goes nowhere. 3 A whip for the horse, a bridle for the donkey, and a rod for the back of fools. 4 Do not answer fools according to their folly, or you will be a fool yourself. 5 Answer fools according to their folly, or they will be wise in their own eyes. 6 It is like cutting off one's foot and drinking down violence, to send a message by a fool. 7 The legs of a disabled person hang limp; so does a proverb in the mouth of a fool. 8 It is like binding a stone in a sling to give honor to a fool. 9 Like a thornbush brandished by the hand of a drunkard is a proverb in the mouth of a fool. 10 Like an archer who wounds everybody is one who hires a passing fool or drunkard. 11 Like a dog that returns to its vomit is a fool who reverts to his folly. 12 Do you see persons wise in their own eyes? There is more hope for fools than for them. 13 The lazy person says, "There is a lion in the road! There is a lion in the streets!" 14 As a door turns on its hinges, so does a lazy person in bed. 15 The lazy person buries a hand in the dish, and is too tired to bring it back to the mouth. 16 The lazy person is wiser in self-esteem than seven who can answer discreetly. 17 Like somebody who takes a passing dog by the ears is one who meddles in the quarrel of another. 18 Like a maniac who shoots deadly firebrands and arrows, 19 so is one who deceives a neighbor and says, "I am only joking!" 20 For lack of wood the fire goes out, and where there is no whisperer, quarreling ceases. 21 As charcoal is to hot embers and wood to fire, so is a quarrelsome person for kindling strife. 22 The words of a whisperer are like delicious morsels; they go down into the inner parts of the body. 23 Like the glaze covering an earthen vessel are smooth lips with an evil heart. 24 An enemy dissembles in speaking while harboring deceit within; 25 when an enemy speaks graciously, do not believe it, for there are seven abominations concealed within; 26 though hatred is covered with guile, the enemy's wickedness will be exposed in the assembly. 27 Whoever digs a pit will fall into it, and a stone will come back on the one who starts it rolling. 28 A lying tongue hates its victims, and a flattering mouth works ruin.
1 Now it is not necessary for me to write you about the ministry to the saints, 2 for I know your eagerness, which is the subject of my boasting about you to the people of Macedonia, saying that Achaia has been ready since last year; and your zeal has stirred up most of them. 3 But I am sending the brothers in order that our boasting about you may not prove to have been empty in this case, so that you may be ready, as I said you would be; 4 otherwise, if some Macedonians come with me and find that you are not ready, we would be humiliated—to say nothing of you—in this undertaking. 5 So I thought it necessary to urge the brothers to go on ahead to you, and arrange in advance for this bountiful gift that you have promised, so that it may be ready as a voluntary gift and not as an extortion. 6 The point is this: the one who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the one who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that by always having enough of everything, you may share abundantly in every good work. 9 As it is written, "He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor; his righteousness endures forever." 10 He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. 11 You will be enriched in every way for your great generosity, which will produce thanksgiving to God through us; 12 for the rendering of this ministry not only supplies the needs of the saints but also overflows with many thanksgivings to God. 13 Through the testing of this ministry you glorify God by your obedience to the confession of the gospel of Christ and by the generosity of your sharing with them and with all others, 14 while they long for you and pray for you because of the surpassing grace of God that he has given you. 15 Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!