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Ecclesiastes 10 NLT/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

New Living Translation (NLT) New International Version (NIV)
1 Dead flies will cause even a bottle of perfume to stink! Yes, an ounce of foolishness can outweigh a pound of wisdom and honor. 1 As dead flies give perfume a bad smell, so a little folly outweighs wisdom and honor.
2 The hearts of the wise lead them to do right, and the hearts of the foolish lead them to do evil. 2 The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left.
3 You can identify fools just by the way they walk down the street! 3 Even as he walks along the road, the fool lacks sense and shows everyone how stupid he is.
4 If your boss is angry with you, don't quit! A quiet spirit can overcome even great mistakes. 4 If a ruler's anger rises against you, do not leave your post; calmness can lay great errors to rest.
5 There is another evil I have seen as I have watched the world go by. Kings and rulers make a grave mistake 5 There is an evil I have seen under the sun, the sort of error that arises from a ruler:
6 if they give foolish people great authority, and if they fail to give people of proven worth their rightful place of dignity. 6 Fools are put in many high positions, while the rich occupy the low ones.
7 I have even seen servants riding like princes -- and princes walking like servants. 7 I have seen slaves on horseback, while princes go on foot like slaves.
8 When you dig a well, you may fall in. When you demolish an old wall, you could be bitten by a snake. 8 Whoever digs a pit may fall into it; whoever breaks through a wall may be bitten by a snake.
9 When you work in a quarry, stones might fall and crush you! When you chop wood, there is danger with each stroke of your ax! Such are the risks of life. 9 Whoever quarries stones may be injured by them; whoever splits logs may be endangered by them.
10 Since a dull ax requires great strength, sharpen the blade. That's the value of wisdom; it helps you succeed. 10 If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed but skill will bring success.
11 It does no good to charm a snake after it has bitten you. 11 If a snake bites before it is charmed, there is no profit for the charmer.
12 It is pleasant to listen to wise words, but the speech of fools brings them to ruin. 12 Words from a wise man's mouth are gracious, but a fool is consumed by his own lips.
13 Since fools base their thoughts on foolish premises, their conclusions will be wicked madness. 13 At the beginning his words are folly; at the end they are wicked madness--
14 Foolish people claim to know all about the future and tell everyone the details! But who can really know what is going to happen? 14 and the fool multiplies words. No one knows what is coming-- who can tell him what will happen after him?
15 Fools are so exhausted by a little work that they have no strength for even the simplest tasks. 15 A fool's work wearies him; he does not know the way to town.
16 Destruction is certain for the land whose king is a child and whose leaders feast in the morning. 16 Woe to you, O land whose king was a servant and whose princes feast in the morning.
17 Happy is the land whose king is a nobleman and whose leaders feast only to gain strength for their work, not to get drunk. 17 Blessed are you, O land whose king is of noble birth and whose princes eat at a proper time-- for strength and not for drunkenness.
18 Laziness lets the roof leak, and soon the rafters begin to rot. 18 If a man is lazy, the rafters sag; if his hands are idle, the house leaks.
19 A party gives laughter, and wine gives happiness, and money gives everything! 19 A feast is made for laughter, and wine makes life merry, but money is the answer for everything.
20 Never make light of the king, even in your thoughts. And don't make fun of a rich man, either. A little bird may tell them what you have said. 20 Do not revile the king even in your thoughts, or curse the rich in your bedroom, because a bird of the air may carry your words, and a bird on the wing may report what you say.