Proverbs 25–26; 2 Corinthians 9

More Proverbs of Solomon

25 These also are mproverbs of Solomon which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied.

It is the glory of God to nconceal things,

but the glory of kings is to osearch things out.

As the heavens for height, and the earth for depth,

so the heart of kings is punsearchable.

Take away qthe dross from the silver,

and rthe smith has material for a vessel;

take away sthe wicked from the presence of the king,

and his tthrone will be established in righteousness.

Do not put yourself forward in the king’s presence

or stand in the place of the great,

for uit is better to be told, Come up here,

than to be put lower in the presence of a noble.

What your eyes have seen

wdo not hastily bring into court,1

for2 what will you do in the end,

when your neighbor puts you to shame?

xArgue your case with your neighbor himself,

and do not reveal another’s secret,

10  lest he who hears you bring shame upon you,

and your ill repute have no end.

11  yA word fitly spoken

is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.

12  Like za gold ring or an ornament of gold

is a wise reprover to aa listening ear.

13  Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest

is ba faithful messenger to those who send him;

he refreshes the soul of his masters.

14  Like cclouds and wind without rain

is a man who dboasts of a gift he does not give.

15  With epatience a ruler may be persuaded,

and a soft tongue will break a bone.

16  If you have ffound honey, eat gonly enough for you,

lest you have your fill of it and vomit it.

17  Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor’s house,

lest he have his fill of you and hate you.

18  A man who hbears false witness against his neighbor

is like a war club, or ia sword, or a sharp arrow.

19  Trusting in a treacherous man in time of trouble

is like a bad tooth or a foot that slips.

20  Whoever jsings songs to a heavy heart

is like one who takes off a garment on a cold day,

and like vinegar on soda.

21  kIf your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat,

and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink,

22  for you will heap lburning coals on his head,

and the Lord will reward you.

23  The north wind brings forth rain,

and a backbiting tongue, angry looks.

24  mIt is better to live in a corner of the housetop

than in a house shared with a quarrelsome wife.

25  Like cold water to na thirsty soul,

so is ogood news from a far country.

26  Like pa muddied spring or a polluted fountain

is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.

27  It is qnot good to eat much honey,

nor is it glorious to rseek one’s own glory.3

28  A man swithout self-control

is like ta city broken into and left without walls.

26  Like snow in summer or urain in harvest,

so vhonor is wnot fitting for a fool.

Like xa sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying,

ya curse that is causeless does not alight.

zA whip for the horse, a bridle for the donkey,

and aa rod for the back of fools.

bAnswer not a fool according to his folly,

lest you be like him yourself.

cAnswer a fool according to his folly,

lest he be dwise in his own eyes.

Whoever sends a message by the hand of a fool

cuts off his own feet and edrinks violence.

Like a lame man’s legs, which hang useless,

is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

Like one who binds the stone in the sling

is fone who gives honor to a fool.

Like ga thorn that goes up into the hand of a drunkard

is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

10  Like an archer who wounds everyone

is one who hires a passing fool or drunkard.4

11  Like ha dog that returns to his vomit

is ia fool who repeats his folly.

12  Do you see a man who is jwise in his own eyes?

kThere is more hope for a fool than for him.

13  lThe sluggard 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 sluggard on his bed.

15  mThe sluggard buries his hand in the dish;

it wears him out to bring it back to his mouth.

16  The sluggard is jwiser in his own eyes

nthan seven men who can answer sensibly.

17  Whoever meddles in a quarrel not his own

is like one who takes a passing dog by the ears.

18  Like a madman who throws ofirebrands, arrows, and death

19  is the man who deceives his neighbor

and says, I am only joking!

20  For lack of wood the fire goes out,

and where there is no pwhisperer, qquarreling ceases.

21  As charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire,

so is ra quarrelsome man for kindling strife.

22  sThe words of pa whisperer are like delicious morsels;

they go down into the inner parts of the body.

23  tLike the uglaze5 covering an earthen vessel

are fervent lips with an evil heart.

24  Whoever hates disguises himself with his lips

and harbors deceit in his heart;

25  vwhen he speaks graciously, believe him not,

for there are wseven abominations in his heart;

26  though his hatred be covered with deception,

his wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.

27  xWhoever digs a pit will fall into it,

and a stone will come back on him who starts it rolling.

28  A lying tongue hates its victims,

and a flattering mouth works ruin.


The Collection for Christians in Jerusalem

Now lit is superfluous for me to write to you about mthe ministry for the saints, for I know your readiness, nof which I boast about you to the people of Macedonia, saying that Achaia has been ready osince last year. And your zeal has stirred up most of them. But pI am sending1 the brothers so that our boasting about you may not prove empty in this matter, so that you may be ready, qas I said you would be. Otherwise, if some Macedonians rcome with me and find that you are not ready, we would be humiliatedto say nothing of youfor being so confident. So I thought it necessary to urge the brothers to go on ahead to you and arrange in advance for the sgift2 you have promised, so that it may be ready tas a willing gift, unot as an exaction.3

The Cheerful Giver

The point is this: vwhoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully4 will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, wnot reluctantly or under compulsion, for xGod loves a cheerful giver. And yGod is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency5 in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. As it is written,

zHe has distributed freely, he has given to the poor;

his righteousness endures forever.

10 He who supplies aseed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and bincrease the harvest of your righteousness. 11 cYou will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which dthrough us will produce thanksgiving to God. 12 For the ministry of this service is not only supplying ethe needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God. 13 By their approval of this service, fthey6 will glorify God because of your submission that comes from your gconfession of the gospel of Christ, and the generosity of your contribution for them and for all others, 14 while they long for you and pray for you, because of the surpassing grace of God upon you. 15 hThanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!