Proverbs 19; Proverbs 20; Proverbs 21

1 Better to be poor and honest than a rich person no one can trust. 2 Ignorant zeal is worthless; haste makes waste. 3 People ruin their lives by their own stupidity, so why does God always get blamed? 4 Wealth attracts friends as honey draws flies, but poor people are avoided like a plague. 5 Perjury won't go unpunished. Would you let a liar go free? 6 Lots of people flock around a generous person; everyone's a friend to the philanthropist. 7 When you're down on your luck, even your family avoids you - yes, even your best friends wish you'd get lost. If they see you coming, they look the other way - out of sight, out of mind. 8 Grow a wise heart - you'll do yourself a favor; keep a clear head - you'll find a good life. 9 The person who tells lies gets caught; the person who spreads rumors is ruined. 10 Blockheads shouldn't live on easy street any more than workers should give orders to their boss. 11 Smart people know how to hold their tongue; their grandeur is to forgive and forget. 12 Mean-tempered leaders are like mad dogs; the good-natured are like fresh morning dew. 13 A parent is worn to a frazzle by a stupid child; a nagging spouse is a leaky faucet. 14 House and land are handed down from parents, but a congenial spouse comes straight from God. 15 Life collapses on loafers; lazybones go hungry. 16 Keep the rules and keep your life; careless living kills. 17 Mercy to the needy is a loan to God, and God pays back those loans in full. 18 Discipline your children while you still have the chance; indulging them destroys them. 19 Let angry people endure the backlash of their own anger; if you try to make it better, you'll only make it worse. 20 Take good counsel and accept correction - that's the way to live wisely and well. 21 We humans keep brainstorming options and plans, but God's purpose prevails. 22 It's only human to want to make a buck, but it's better to be poor than a liar. 23 Fear-of-God is life itself, a full life, and serene - no nasty surprises. 24 Some people dig a fork into the pie but are too lazy to raise it to their mouth. 25 Punish the insolent - make an example of them. Who knows? Somebody might learn a good lesson. 26 Kids who lash out against their parents are an embarrassment and disgrace. 27 If you quit listening, dear child, and strike off on your own, you'll soon be out of your depth. 28 An unprincipled witness desecrates justice; the mouths of the wicked spew malice. 29 The irreverent have to learn reverence the hard way; only a slap in the face brings fools to attention.
1 Wine makes you mean, beer makes you quarrelsome - a staggering drunk is not much fun. 2 Quick-tempered leaders are like mad dogs - cross them and they bite your head off. 3 It's a mark of good character to avert quarrels, but fools love to pick fights. 4 A farmer too lazy to plant in the spring has nothing to harvest in the fall. 5 Knowing what is right is like deep water in the heart; a wise person draws from the well within. 6 Lots of people claim to be loyal and loving, but where on earth can you find one? 7 God-loyal people, living honest lives, make it much easier for their children. 8 Leaders who know their business and care keep a sharp eye out for the shoddy and cheap, 9 For who among us can be trusted to be always diligent and honest? 10 Switching price tags and padding the expense account are two things God hates. 11 Young people eventually reveal by their actions if their motives are on the up and up. Drinking from the Chalice of Knowledge 12 Ears that hear and eyes that see - we get our basic equipment from God! 13 Don't be too fond of sleep; you'll end up in the poorhouse. Wake up and get up; then there'll be food on the table. 14 The shopper says, "That's junk - I'll take it off your hands," then goes off boasting of the bargain. 15 Drinking from the beautiful chalice of knowledge is better than adorning oneself with gold and rare gems. 16 Hold tight to collateral on any loan to a stranger; beware of accepting what a transient has pawned. 17 Stolen bread tastes sweet, but soon your mouth is full of gravel. 18 Form your purpose by asking for counsel, then carry it out using all the help you can get. 19 Gossips can't keep secrets, so never confide in blabbermouths. 20 Anyone who curses father and mother extinguishes light and exists benighted. The Very Steps We Take 21 A bonanza at the beginning is no guarantee of blessing at the end. 22 Don't ever say, "I'll get you for that!" Wait for God; he'll settle the score. 23 God hates cheating in the marketplace; rigged scales are an outrage. 24 The very steps we take come from God; otherwise how would we know where we're going? 25 An impulsive vow is a trap; later you'll wish you could get out of it. 26 After careful scrutiny, a wise leader makes a clean sweep of rebels and dolts. 27 God is in charge of human life, watching and examining us inside and out. 28 Love and truth form a good leader; sound leadership is founded on loving integrity. 29 Youth may be admired for vigor, but gray hair gives prestige to old age. 30 A good thrashing purges evil; punishment goes deep within us.
1 Good leadership is a channel of water controlled by God; he directs it to whatever ends he chooses. 2 We justify our actions by appearances; God examines our motives. 3 Clean living before God and justice with our neighbors mean far more to God than religious performance. 4 Arrogance and pride - distinguishing marks in the wicked - are just plain sin. 5 Careful planning puts you ahead in the long run; hurry and scurry puts you further behind. 6 Make it to the top by lying and cheating; get paid with smoke and a promotion - to death! 7 The wicked get buried alive by their loot because they refuse to use it to help others. 8 Mixed motives twist life into tangles; pure motives take you straight down the road. Do Your Best, Prepare for the Worst 9 Better to live alone in a tumbledown shack than share a mansion with a nagging spouse. 10 Wicked souls love to make trouble; they feel nothing for friends and neighbors. 11 Simpletons only learn the hard way, but the wise learn by listening. 12 A God-loyal person will see right through the wicked and undo the evil they've planned. 13 If you stop your ears to the cries of the poor, your cries will go unheard, unanswered. 14 A quietly given gift soothes an irritable person; a heartfelt present cools a hot temper. 15 Good people celebrate when justice triumphs, but for the workers of evil it's a bad day. 16 Whoever wanders off the straight and narrow ends up in a congregation of ghosts. 17 You're addicted to thrills? What an empty life! The pursuit of pleasure is never satisfied. 18 What a bad person plots against the good, boomerangs; the plotter gets it in the end. 19 Better to live in a tent in the wild than with a cross and petulant spouse. 20 Valuables are safe in a wise person's home; fools put it all out for yard sales. 21 Whoever goes hunting for what is right and kind finds life itself - glorious life! 22 One sage entered a whole city of armed soldiers - their trusted defenses fell to pieces! 23 Watch your words and hold your tongue; you'll save yourself a lot of grief. 24 You know their names - Brash, Impudent, Blasphemer - intemperate hotheads, every one. 25 Lazy people finally die of hunger because they won't get up and go to work. 26 Sinners are always wanting what they don't have; the God-loyal are always giving what they do have. 27 Religious performance by the wicked stinks; it's even worse when they use it to get ahead. 28 A lying witness is unconvincing; a person who speaks truth is respected. 29 Unscrupulous people fake it a lot; honest people are sure of their steps. 30 Nothing clever, nothing conceived, nothing contrived, can get the better of God. 31 Do your best, prepare for the worst - then trust God to bring victory.
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