Proverbs 22; Proverbs 23; Proverbs 24; 2 Corinthians 8

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Proverbs 22

1 A good name is to be chosen over great wealth; favor is better than silver and gold.
2 The rich and the poor have this in common: the Lord made them both.
3 A sensible person sees danger and takes cover, but the inexperienced keep going and are punished.
4 The result of humility is fear of the Lord, along with wealth, honor, and life.
5 There are thorns and snares on the path of the crooked; the one who guards himself stays far from them.
6 Teach a youth about the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
7 The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is a slave to the lender.
8 The one who sows injustice will reap disaster, and the rod of his fury will be destroyed.
9 A generous person will be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor.
10 Drive out a mocker, and conflict goes too; then lawsuits and dishonor will cease.
11 The one who loves a pure heart and gracious lips-the king is his friend.
12 The Lord's eyes keep watch over knowledge, but He overthrows the words of the treacherous.
13 The slacker says, "There's a lion outside! I'll be killed in the streets!"
14 The mouth of the forbidden woman is a deep pit; a man cursed by the Lord will fall into it.
15 Foolishness is tangled up in the heart of a youth; the rod of discipline will drive it away from him.
16 Oppressing the poor to enrich oneself, and giving to the rich-both lead only to poverty.
17 Listen closely, pay attention to the words of the wise, and apply your mind to my knowledge.
18 For it is pleasing if you keep them within you and if they are constantly on your lips.
19 I have instructed you today-even you- so that your confidence may be in the Lord.
20 Haven't I written for you thirty sayings about counsel and knowledge,
21 in order to teach you true and reliable words, so that you may give a dependable report to those who sent you?
22 Don't rob a poor man because he is poor, and don't crush the oppressed at the gate,
23 for the Lord will take up their case and will plunder those who plunder them.
24 Don't make friends with an angry man, and don't be a companion of a hot-tempered man,
25 or you will learn his ways and entangle yourself in a snare.
26 Don't be one of those who enter agreements, who put up security for loans.
27 If you have no money to pay, even your bed will be taken from under you.
28 Don't move an ancient property line that your fathers set up.
29 Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will stand in the presence of kings. He will not stand in the presence of unknown men.
Holman Christian Standard Bible ® Copyright © 2003, 2002, 2000, 1999 by Holman Bible Publishers.  Used by permission.  All rights reserved.

Proverbs 23

1 When you sit down to dine with a ruler, consider carefully what is before you,
2 and stick a knife in your throat if you have a big appetite;
3 don't desire his choice food, for that food is deceptive.
4 Don't wear yourself out to get rich; stop giving your attention to it.
5 As soon as your eyes fly to it, it disappears, for it makes wings for itself and flies like an eagle to the sky.
6 Don't eat a stingy person's bread, and don't desire his choice food,
7 for as he thinks within himself, so he is. "Eat and drink," he says to you, but his heart is not with you.
8 You will vomit the little you've eaten and waste your pleasant words.
9 Don't speak to a fool, for he will despise the insight of your words.
10 Don't move an ancient property line, and don't encroach on the fields of the fatherless,
11 for their Redeemer is strong, and He will take up their case against you.
12 Apply yourself to instruction and listen to words of knowledge.
13 Don't withhold correction from a youth; if you beat him with a rod, he will not die.
14 Strike him with a rod, and you will rescue his life from Sheol.
15 My son, if your heart is wise, my heart will indeed rejoice.
16 My innermost being will cheer when your lips say what is right.
17 Don't be jealous of sinners; instead, always fear the Lord.
18 For then you will have a future, and your hope will never fade.
19 Listen, my son, and be wise; keep your mind on the right course.
20 Don't associate with those who drink too much wine, or with those who gorge themselves on meat.
21 For the drunkard and the glutton will become poor, and grogginess will clothe [them] in rags.
22 Listen to your father who gave you life, and don't despise your mother when she is old.
23 Buy-and do not sell-truth, wisdom, instruction, and understanding.
24 The father of a righteous son will rejoice greatly, and one who fathers a wise son will delight in him.
25 Let your father and mother have joy, and let her who gave birth to you rejoice.
26 My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways.
27 For a prostitute is a deep pit, and a forbidden woman is a narrow well;
28 indeed, she sets an ambush like a robber and increases those among men who are unfaithful.
29 Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has conflicts? Who has complaints? Who has wounds for no reason? Who has red eyes?
30 Those who linger over wine, those who go looking for mixed wine.
31 Don't gaze at wine when it is red, when it gleams in the cup and goes down smoothly.
32 In the end it bites like a snake and stings like a viper.
33 Your eyes will see strange things, and you will say absurd things.
34 You'll be like someone sleeping out at sea or lying down on the top of a ship's mast.
35 "They struck me, but I feel no pain! They beat me, but I didn't know it! When will I wake up? I'll look for another [drink]."
Holman Christian Standard Bible ® Copyright © 2003, 2002, 2000, 1999 by Holman Bible Publishers.  Used by permission.  All rights reserved.

Proverbs 24

1 Don't envy evil men or desire to be with them,
2 for their hearts plan violence, and their words stir up trouble.
3 A house is built by wisdom, and it is established by understanding;
4 by knowledge the rooms are filled with every precious and beautiful treasure.
5 A wise warrior is better than a strong one, and a man of knowledge than one of strength;
6 for you should wage war with sound guidance- victory comes with many counselors.
7 Wisdom is inaccessible to a fool; he does not open his mouth at the gate.
8 The one who plots evil will be called a schemer.
9 A foolish scheme is sin, and a mocker is detestable to people.
10 If you do nothing in a difficult time, your strength is limited.
11 Rescue those being taken off to death, and save those stumbling toward slaughter.
12 If you say, "But we didn't know about this," won't He who weighs hearts consider it? Won't He who protects your life know? Won't He repay a person according to his work?
13 Eat honey, my son, for it is good, and the honeycomb is sweet to your palate;
14 realize that wisdom is the same for you. If you find it, you will have a future, and your hope will never fade.
15 Don't set an ambush, wicked man, at the camp of the righteous man; don't destroy his dwelling.
16 Though a righteous man falls seven times, he will get up, but the wicked will stumble into ruin.
17 Don't gloat when your enemy falls, and don't let your heart rejoice when he stumbles,
18 or the Lord will see, be displeased, and turn His wrath away from him.
19 Don't worry because of evildoers, and don't envy the wicked.
20 For the evil have no future; the lamp of the wicked will be put out.
21 My son, fear the Lord, as well as the king, and don't associate with rebels,
22 for their destruction will come suddenly; who knows what disaster these two can bring?
23 These [sayings] also belong to the wise: It is not good to show partiality in judgment.
24 Whoever says to the guilty, "You are innocent"- people will curse him, and tribes will denounce him;
25 but it will go well with those who convict the guilty, and a generous blessing will come to them.
26 He who gives an honest answer gives a kiss on the lips.
27 Complete your outdoor work, and prepare your field; afterwards, build your house.
28 Don't testify against your neighbor without cause. Don't deceive with your lips.
29 Don't say, "I'll do to him what he did to me; I'll repay the man for what he has done."
30 I went by the field of a slacker and by the vineyard of a man lacking sense.
31 Thistles had come up everywhere, weeds covered the ground, and the stone wall was ruined.
32 I saw, and took it to heart; I looked, and received instruction:
33 a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the arms to rest,
34 and your poverty will come like a robber, your need, like a bandit.
Holman Christian Standard Bible ® Copyright © 2003, 2002, 2000, 1999 by Holman Bible Publishers.  Used by permission.  All rights reserved.

2 Corinthians 8

1 We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God granted to the churches of Macedonia:
2 during a severe testing by affliction, their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed into the wealth of their generosity.
3 I testify that, on their own, according to their ability and beyond their ability,
4 they begged us insistently for the privilege of sharing in the ministry to the saints,
5 and not just as we had hoped. Instead, they gave themselves especially to the Lord, then to us by God's will.
6 So we urged Titus that, just as he had begun, so he should also complete this grace to you.
7 Now as you excel in everything-in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all diligence, and in your love for us-excel also in this grace.
8 I am not saying this as a command. Rather, by means of the diligence of others, I am testing the genuineness of your love.
9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ: although He was rich, for your sake He became poor, so that by His poverty you might become rich.
10 Now I am giving an opinion on this because it is profitable for you, who a year ago began not only to do something but also to desire it.
11 But now finish the task as well, that just as there was eagerness to desire it, so there may also be a completion from what you have.
12 For if the eagerness is there, it is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.
13 It is not that there may be relief for others and hardship for you, but it is a question of equality-
14 at the present time your surplus is [available] for their need, so that their abundance may also become [available] for your need, that there may be equality.
15 As it has been written: The person who gathered much did not have too much, and the person who gathered little did not have too little.
16 Thanks be to God who put the same diligence for you into the heart of Titus.
17 For he accepted our urging and, being very diligent, went out to you by his own choice.
18 With him we have sent the brother who is praised throughout the churches for his gospel ministry.
19 And not only that, but he was also appointed by the churches to accompany us with this gift that is being administered by us for the glory of the Lord Himself and to show our eagerness [to help].
20 We are taking this precaution so no one can find fault with us concerning this large sum administered by us.
21 For we are making provision for what is honorable, not only before the Lord but also before men.
22 We have also sent with them our brother whom we have often tested, in many circumstances, and found diligent-and now even more diligent because of his great confidence in you.
23 As for Titus, he is my partner and co-worker serving you; as for our brothers, they are the messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ.
24 Therefore, before the churches, show them the proof of your love and of our boasting about you.
Holman Christian Standard Bible ® Copyright © 2003, 2002, 2000, 1999 by Holman Bible Publishers.  Used by permission.  All rights reserved.