Proverbs 4; Proverbs 5; Proverbs 6

A Father’s Wise Instruction

fHear, O sons, a father’s instruction,

and be attentive, that you may ggain1 insight,

for I give you good hprecepts;

do not forsake my teaching.

When I was a son with my father,

itender, jthe only one in the sight of my mother,

he ktaught me and said to me,

lLet your heart hold fast my words;

mkeep my commandments, and live.

nGet wisdom; get ginsight;

do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth.

Do not forsake her, and she will keep you;

olove her, and she will guard you.

pThe beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom,

and whatever you get, get ginsight.

Prize her highly, and she will exalt you;

she will qhonor you rif you embrace her.

She will place on your head sa graceful garland;

she will bestow on you a beautiful crown.

10  fHear, tmy son, and accept my words,

that uthe years of your life may be many.

11  I have vtaught you the way of wisdom;

I have led you in the paths of uprightness.

12  When you walk, wyour step will not be hampered,

and xif you run, you will not stumble.

13  yKeep hold of instruction; do not let go;

guard her, for she is your zlife.

14  aDo not enter the path of the wicked,

and do not walk in the way of the evil.

15  Avoid it; do not go on it;

turn away from it and pass on.

16  For they bcannot sleep unless they have done wrong;

they are robbed of sleep unless they have made someone stumble.

17  For they eat the bread of wickedness

cand drink the wine of violence.

18  But dthe path of the righteous is like ethe light of dawn,

which shines fbrighter and brighter until gfull day.

19  hThe way of the wicked is like deep idarkness;

they do not know over what they jstumble.

20  kMy son, be attentive to my words;

incline your ear to my sayings.

21  lLet them not escape from your sight;

mkeep them within your heart.

22  For they are nlife to those who find them,

and healing to all their2 flesh.

23  Keep your heart with all vigilance,

for ofrom it flow pthe springs of life.

24  Put away from you qcrooked speech,

and put rdevious talk far from you.

25  sLet your eyes look directly forward,

and your gaze be straight before you.

26  tPonder3 the path of your feet;

uthen all your ways will be sure.

27  vDo not swerve to the right or to the left;

turn your foot away from evil.


Warning Against Adultery

wMy son, be attentive to my wisdom;

xincline your ear to my understanding,

that you may keep ydiscretion,

and your lips may zguard knowledge.

For the lips of aa forbidden1 woman drip honey,

and her speech2 is bsmoother than oil,

but in the end she is cbitter as dwormwood,

esharp as fa two-edged sword.

Her feet ggo down to death;

her steps follow the path to3 Sheol;

she hdoes not ponder the path of life;

her ways wander, and she does not know it.

And inow, O sons, listen to me,

and do not depart from the words of my mouth.

Keep your way far from her,

and do not go near the door of her house,

lest you give your honor to others

and your years to the merciless,

10  lest strangers take their fill of your strength,

and your jlabors go to the house of a foreigner,

11  and at the end of your life you kgroan,

when your flesh and body are consumed,

12  and you say, lHow I hated discipline,

and my heart mdespised reproof!

13  I did not listen to the voice of my teachers

or incline my ear to my instructors.

14  nI am at the brink of utter ruin

in the assembled congregation.

15  Drink owater from your own cistern,

flowing water from your own well.

16  Should your psprings be scattered abroad,

streams of water qin the streets?

17  rLet them be for yourself alone,

and not for strangers with you.

18  Let your ofountain be blessed,

and srejoice in tthe wife of your youth,

19  a lovely udeer, a graceful doe.

Let her breasts vfill you at all times with delight;

be intoxicated4 always in her love.

20  Why should you be intoxicated, my son, with wa forbidden woman

and embrace the bosom of wan adulteress?5

21  For xa man’s ways are ybefore the eyes of the Lord,

and he zponders6 all his paths.

22  The ainiquities of the wicked bensnare him,

and he is held fast in the cords of his sin.

23  cHe dies for lack of discipline,

and because of his great folly he is dled astray.


Practical Warnings

My son, if you have put up esecurity for your neighbor,

have egiven your pledge for a stranger,

if you are fsnared in the words of your mouth,

caught in the words of your mouth,

then do this, my son, and save yourself,

for you have come into the hand of your neighbor:

go, hasten,1 and gplead urgently with your neighbor.

hGive your eyes no sleep

and your eyelids no slumber;

save yourself like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter,2

ilike a bird from the hand of the fowler.

jGo to kthe ant, O lsluggard;

consider her ways, and mbe wise.

nWithout having any chief,

oofficer, or ruler,

she prepares her bread pin summer

and qgathers her food in harvest.

rHow long will you lie there, lO sluggard?

When will you arise from your sleep?

10  sA little sleep, a little slumber,

ta little sfolding of the hands to rest,

11  uand poverty will come upon you like a robber,

and want like an armed man.

12  vA worthless person, a wicked man,

goes about with wcrooked speech,

13  xwinks with his eyes, signals3 with his feet,

points with his finger,

14  with yperverted heart zdevises evil,

continually asowing discord;

15  therefore calamity will come upon him suddenly;

bin a moment he will be broken cbeyond healing.

16  There are dsix things that the Lord hates,

dseven that are an abomination to him:

17  ehaughty eyes, fa lying tongue,

and ghands that shed innocent blood,

18  ha heart that devises wicked plans,

ifeet that make haste to run to evil,

19  ja false witness who kbreathes out lies,

and one who asows discord among brothers.

Warnings Against Adultery

20  lMy son, keep your father’s commandment,

land forsake not your mother’s teaching.

21  mBind them on your heart always;

ntie them around your neck.

22  oWhen you walk, they4 will lead you;

owhen you lie down, they will pwatch over you;

and when you awake, they will talk with you.

23  For the commandment is qa lamp and the teaching a light,

and the rreproofs of discipline are the way of life,

24  to preserve you from the evil woman,5

from the smooth tongue of sthe adulteress.6

25  tDo not desire her beauty in your heart,

and do not let her capture you with her ueyelashes;

26  for vthe price of a prostitute is only wa loaf of bread,7

but a married woman8 xhunts down a precious life.

27  Can a man carry yfire next to his zchest

and his clothes not be burned?

28  Or can one awalk on hot coals

and his feet not be scorched?

29  So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife;

none who touches her bwill go unpunished.

30  People do not despise a thief if he steals

to csatisfy his appetite when he is hungry,

31  but dif he is caught, he will pay esevenfold;

he will give all the goods of his house.

32  He who commits adultery lacks sense;

he who does it destroys himself.

33  He will get wounds and dishonor,

and his disgrace will not be wiped away.

34  For fjealousy makes a man furious,

and he will not spare when ghe takes revenge.

35  He will accept no compensation;

he will refuse though you multiply gifts.