Proverbs 6; Proverbs 7; 2 Corinthians 2

1 My child, have you promised to be responsible for someone else's debts? 2 Have you been caught by your own words, trapped by your own promises? 3 Well then, my child, you are in that person's power, but this is how to get out of it: hurry to him, and beg him to release you. 4 Don't let yourself go to sleep or even stop to rest. 5 Get out of the trap like a bird or a deer escaping from a hunter. 6 Lazy people should learn a lesson from the way ants live. 7 They have no leader, chief, or ruler, 8 but they store up their food during the summer, getting ready for winter. 9 How long is the lazy man going to lie around? When is he ever going to get up? 10 "I'll just take a short nap," he says; "I'll fold my hands and rest a while." 11 But while he sleeps, poverty will attack him like an armed robber. 12 Worthless, wicked people go around telling lies. 13 They wink and make gestures to deceive you, 14 all the while planning evil in their perverted minds, stirring up trouble everywhere. 15 Because of this, disaster will strike them without warning, and they will be fatally wounded. 16 There are seven things that the Lord hates and cannot tolerate: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that kill innocent people, a mind that thinks up wicked plans, feet that hurry off to do evil, a witness who tells one lie after another, and someone who stirs up trouble among friends 20 Son, do what your father tells you and never forget what your mother taught you. 21 Keep their words with you always, locked in your heart. 22 Their teaching will lead you when you travel, protect you at night, and advise you during the day. 23 Their instructions are a shining light; their correction can teach you how to live. 24 It can keep you away from bad women, from the seductive words of other men's wives. 25 Don't be tempted by their beauty; don't be trapped by their flirting eyes. 26 A man can hire a prostitute for the price of a loaf of bread, but adultery will cost him all he has. 27 Can you carry fire against your chest without burning your clothes? 28 Can you walk on hot coals without burning your feet? 29 It is just as dangerous to sleep with another man's wife. Whoever does it will suffer. 30 People don't despise a thief if he steals food when he is hungry; 31 yet if he is caught, he must pay back seven times more - he must give up everything he has. 32 But a man who commits adultery doesn't have any sense. He is just destroying himself. 33 He will be dishonored and beaten up; he will be permanently disgraced. 34 A husband is never angrier than when he is jealous; his revenge knows no limits. 35 He will not accept any payment; no amount of gifts will satisfy his anger.
1 My child, remember what I say and never forget what I tell you to do. 2 Do what I say, and you will live. Be as careful to follow my teaching as you are to protect your eyes. 3 Keep my teaching with you all the time; write it on your heart. 4 Treat wisdom as your sister, and insight as your closest friend. 5 They will keep you away from other men's wives, from women with seductive words. 6 Once I was looking out the window of my house, 7 and I saw many inexperienced young men, but noticed one foolish fellow in particular. 8 He was walking along the street near the corner where a certain woman lived. He was passing near her house 9 in the evening after it was dark. 10 And then she met him; she was dressed like a prostitute and was making plans. 11 She was a bold and shameless woman who always walked the streets 12 or stood waiting at a corner, sometimes in the streets, sometimes in the marketplace. 13 She threw her arms around the young man, kissed him, looked him straight in the eye, and said, 14 "I made my offerings today and have the meat from the sacrifices. 15 So I came out looking for you. I wanted to find you, and here you are! 16 I've covered my bed with sheets of colored linen from Egypt. 17 I've perfumed it with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. 18 Come on! Let's make love all night long. We'll be happy in each other's arms. 19 My husband isn't at home. He's on a long trip. 20 He took plenty of money with him and won't be back for two weeks." 21 So she tempted him with her charms, and he gave in to her smooth talk. 22 Suddenly he was going with her like an ox on the way to be slaughtered, like a deer prancing into a trap 23 where an arrow would pierce its heart. He was like a bird going into a net - he did not know that his life was in danger. 24 Now then, sons, listen to me. Pay attention to what I say. 25 Do not let such a woman win your heart; don't go wandering after her. 26 She has been the ruin of many men and caused the death of too many to count. 27 If you go to her house, you are on the way to the world of the dead. It is a shortcut to death.
1 So I made up my mind not to come to you again to make you sad. 2 For if I were to make you sad, who would be left to cheer me up? Only the very persons I had made sad. 3 That is why I wrote that letter to you - I did not want to come to you and be made sad by the very people who should make me glad. For I am convinced that when I am happy, then all of you are happy too. 4 I wrote you with a greatly troubled and distressed heart and with many tears; my purpose was not to make you sad, but to make you realize how much I love you all. 5 Now, if anyone has made somebody sad, he has not done it to me but to all of you - in part, at least. (I say this because I do not want to be too hard on him.) 6 It is enough that this person has been punished in this way by most of you. 7 Now, however, you should forgive him and encourage him, in order to keep him from becoming so sad as to give up completely. 8 And so I beg you to let him know that you really do love him. 9 I wrote you that letter because I wanted to find out how well you had stood the test and whether you are always ready to obey my instructions. 10 When you forgive people for what they have done, I forgive them too. For when I forgive - if, indeed, I need to forgive anything - I do it in Christ's presence because of you, 11 in order to keep Satan from getting the upper hand over us; for we know what his plans are. 12 When I arrived in Troas to preach the Good News about Christ, I found that the Lord had opened the way for the work there. 13 But I was deeply worried, because I could not find our brother Titus. So I said good-bye to the people there and went on to Macedonia. 14 But thanks be to God! For in union with Christ we are always led by God as prisoners in Christ's victory procession. God uses us to make the knowledge about Christ spread everywhere like a sweet fragrance. 15 For we are like a sweet-smelling incense offered by Christ to God, which spreads among those who are being saved and those who are being lost. 16 For those who are being lost, it is a deadly stench that kills; but for those who are being saved, it is a fragrance that brings life. Who, then, is capable for such a task? 17 We are not like so many others, who handle God's message as if it were cheap merchandise; but because God has sent us, we speak with sincerity in his presence, as servants of Christ.
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