July 18

Proverbs 5:1 — 9:18

5 My son, to my wisdom O do pay attention. To my discernment incline your ears, 2 so as to guard thinking abilities; and may your own lips safeguard knowledge itself.

3 For as a honeycomb the lips of a strange woman keep dripping, and her palate is smoother than oil. 4 But the aftereffect from her is as bitter as wormwood; it is as sharp as a two-edged sword. 5 Her feet are descending to death. Her very steps take hold on Sheol itself. 6 The path of life she does not contemplate. Her tracks have wandered she does not know [where]. 7 So now, O sons, listen to me and do not turn away from the sayings of my mouth. 8 Keep your way far off from alongside her, and do not get near to the entrance of her house, 9 that you may not give to others your dignity, nor your years to what is cruel; 10 that strangers may not satisfy themselves with your power, nor the things you got by pain be in the house of a foreigner, 11 nor you have to groan in your future when your flesh and your organism come to an end. 12 And you will have to say: “How I have hated discipline and my heart has disrespected even reproof! 13 And I have not listened to the voice of my instructors, and to my teachers I have not inclined my ear. 14 Easily I have come to be in every sort of badness in the midst of the congregation and of the assembly.”

15 Drink water out of your own cistern, and tricklings out of the midst of your own well. 16 Should your springs be scattered out of doors, [your] streams of water in the public squares themselves? 17 Let them prove to be for you alone, and not for strangers with you. 18 Let your water source prove to be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth, 19 a lovable hind and a charming mountain goat. Let her own breasts intoxicate you at all times. With her love may you be in an ecstasy constantly. 20 So why should you, my son, be in an ecstasy with a strange woman or embrace the bosom of a foreign woman? 21 For the ways of man are in front of the eyes of Jehovah, and he is contemplating all his tracks. 22 His own errors will catch the wicked one, and in the ropes of his own sin he will be taken hold of. 23 He will be the one to die because there is no discipline, and [because] in the abundance of his foolishness he goes astray.

6 My son, if you have gone surety for your fellowman, [if] you have given your handshake even to the stranger, 2 [if] you have been ensnared by the sayings of your mouth, [if] you have been caught by the sayings of your mouth, 3 take this action then, my son, and deliver yourself, for you have come into the palm of your fellowman: Go humble yourself and storm your fellowman with importunities. 4 Do not give any sleep to your eyes, nor any slumber to your beaming eyes. 5 Deliver yourself like a gazelle from the hand and like a bird from the hand of the birdcatcher.

6 Go to the ant, you lazy one; see its ways and become wise. 7 Although it has no commander, officer or ruler, 8 it prepares its food even in the summer; it has gathered its food supplies even in the harvest. 9 How long, you lazy one, will you keep lying down? When will you rise up from your sleep? 10 A little more sleep, a little more slumbering, a little more folding of the hands in lying down, 11 and your poverty will certainly come just like some rover, and your want like an armed man.

12 A good-for-nothing man, a man of hurtfulness, is walking with crookedness of speech, 13 winking with his eye, making signs with his foot, making indications with his fingers. 14 Perverseness is in his heart. He is fabricating something bad all the time. He keeps sending out merely contentions. 15 That is why suddenly there will come his disaster; in an instant he will be broken, and there will be no healing.

16 There are six things that Jehovah does hate; yes, seven are things detestable to his soul: 17 lofty eyes, a false tongue, and hands that are shedding innocent blood, 18 a heart fabricating hurtful schemes, feet that are in a hurry to run to badness, 19 a false witness that launches forth lies, and anyone sending forth contentions among brothers.

20 Observe, O my son, the commandment of your father, and do not forsake the law of your mother. 21 Tie them upon your heart constantly; bind them upon your throat. 22 When you walk about, it will lead you; when you lie down, it will stand guard over you; and when you have waked up, it itself will make you its concern. 23 For the commandment is a lamp, and a light the law is, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life, 24 to guard you against the bad woman, against the smoothness of the tongue of the foreign woman. 25 Do not desire her prettiness in your heart, and may she not take you with her lustrous eyes, 26 because in behalf of a woman prostitute [one comes down] to a round loaf of bread; but as regards another man’s wife, she hunts even for a precious soul. 27 Can a man rake together fire into his bosom and yet his very garments not be burned? 28 Or can a man walk upon the coals and his feet themselves not be scorched? 29 Likewise with anyone having relations with the wife of his fellowman, no one touching her will remain unpunishable. 30 People do not despise a thief just because he commits thievery to fill his soul when he is hungry. 31 But, when found, he will make it good with seven times as much; all the valuables of his house he will give. 32 Anyone committing adultery with a woman is in want of heart; he that does it is bringing his own soul to ruin. 33 A plague and dishonor he will find, and his reproach itself will not be wiped out. 34 For the rage of an able-bodied man is jealousy, and he will not show compassion in the day of vengeance. 35 He will have no consideration for any sort of ransom, neither will he show willingness, no matter how large you make the present.

7 My son, keep my sayings, and may you treasure up my own commandments with you. 2 Keep my commandments and continue living, and my law like the pupil of your eyes. 3 Tie them upon your fingers, and write them upon the tablet of your heart. 4 Say to wisdom: “You are my sister”; and may you call understanding itself “Kinswoman,” 5 to guard you against the woman stranger, against the foreigner who has made her own sayings smooth. 6 For at the window of my house, through my lattice I looked down, 7 that I might peer upon the inexperienced ones. I was interested in discerning among the sons a young man in want of heart, 8 passing along on the street near her corner, and in the way to her house he marches, 9 in the twilight, in the evening of the day, at the approach of the night and the gloom. 10 And, look! there was a woman to meet him, with the garment of a prostitute and cunning of heart. 11 She is boisterous and stubborn. In her house her feet do not keep residing. 12 Now she is outdoors, now she is in the public squares, and near every corner she lies in wait. 13 And she has grabbed hold of him and given him a kiss. She has put on a bold face, and she begins to say to him:

14 “Communion sacrifices were incumbent upon me. Today I have paid my vows. 15 That is why I have come out to meet you, to look for your face, that I may find you. 16 With coverlets I have bedecked my divan, with many-colored things, linen of Egypt. 17 I have besprinkled my bed with myrrh, aloes and cinnamon. 18 Do come, let us drink our fill of love until the morning; do let us enjoy each other with love expressions. 19 For the husband is not in his house; he has gone traveling on a way of some distance. 20 A bag of money he has taken in his hand. On the day of the full moon he will come to his house.”

21 She has misled him by the abundance of her persuasiveness. By the smoothness of her lips she seduces him. 22 All of a sudden he is going after her, like a bull that comes even to the slaughter, and just as if fettered for the discipline of a foolish man, 23 until an arrow cleaves open his liver, just as a bird hastens into the trap, and he has not known that it involves his very soul.

24 And now, O sons, listen to me and pay attention to the sayings of my mouth. 25 May your heart not turn aside to her ways. Do not wander into her roadways. 26 For many are the ones she has caused to fall down slain, and all those being killed by her are numerous. 27 The ways to Sheol her house is; they are descending to the interior rooms of death.

8 Does not wisdom keep calling out, and discernment keep giving forth its voice? 2 On top of the heights, by the way, at the crossing of the roadways it has stationed itself. 3 At the side of the gates, at the mouth of the town, at the going in of the entrances it keeps crying loudly:

4 “To YOU, O men, I am calling, and my voice is to the sons of men. 5 O inexperienced ones, understand shrewdness; and YOU stupid ones, understand heart. 6 Listen, for it is about the foremost things that I speak, and the opening of my lips is about uprightness. 7 For my palate in low tones utters truth itself; and wickedness is something detestable to my lips. 8 All the sayings of my mouth are in righteousness. Among them there is nothing twisted or crooked. 9 All of them are straight to the discerning one, and upright to the ones finding knowledge. 10 TAKE my discipline and not silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold. 11 For wisdom is better than corals, and all other delights themselves cannot be made equal to it.

12 “I, wisdom, I have resided with shrewdness and I find even the knowledge of thinking abilities. 13 The fear of Jehovah means the hating of bad. Self-exaltation and pride and the bad way and the perverse mouth I have hated. 14 I have counsel and practical wisdom. I—understanding; I have mightiness. 15 By me kings themselves keep reigning, and high officials themselves keep decreeing righteousness. 16 By me princes themselves keep ruling as princes, and nobles are all judging in righteousness. 17 Those loving me I myself love, and those looking for me are the ones that find me. 18 Riches and glory are with me, hereditary values and righteousness. 19 My fruitage is better than gold, even than refined gold, and my produce than choice silver. 20 In the path of righteousness I walk, in the middle of the roadways of judgment, 21 to cause those loving me to take possession of substance; and their storehouses I keep filled.

22 “Jehovah himself produced me as the beginning of his way, the earliest of his achievements of long ago. 23 From time indefinite I was installed, from the start, from times earlier than the earth. 24 When there were no watery deeps I was brought forth as with labor pains, when there were no springs heavily charged with water. 25 Before the mountains themselves had been settled down, ahead of the hills, I was brought forth as with labor pains, 26 when as yet he had not made the earth and the open spaces and the first part of the dust masses of the productive land. 27 When he prepared the heavens I was there; when he decreed a circle upon the face of the watery deep, 28 when he made firm the cloud masses above, when he caused the fountains of the watery deep to be strong, 29 when he set for the sea his decree that the waters themselves should not pass beyond his order, when he decreed the foundations of the earth, 30 then I came to be beside him as a master worker, and I came to be the one he was specially fond of day by day, I being glad before him all the time, 31 being glad at the productive land of his earth, and the things I was fond of were with the sons of men.

32 “And now, O sons, listen to me; yes, happy are the ones that keep my very ways. 33 Listen to discipline and become wise, and do not show any neglect. 34 Happy is the man that is listening to me by keeping awake at my doors day by day, by watching at the posts of my entrances. 35 For the one finding me will certainly find life, and gets goodwill from Jehovah. 36 But the one missing me is doing violence to his soul; all those intensely hating me are the ones that do love death.”

9 True wisdom has built its house; it has hewn out its seven pillars. 2 It has organized its meat slaughtering; it has mixed its wine; more than that, it has set in order its table. 3 It has sent forth its lady attendants, that it may call out on top of the heights of the town: 4 “Whoever is inexperienced, let him turn aside here.” Whoever is in want of heart—she has said to him: 5 “Come, feed yourselves with my bread and share in drinking the wine that I have mixed. 6 Leave the inexperienced ones and keep living, and walk straight in the way of understanding.”

7 He that is correcting the ridiculer is taking to himself dishonor, and he that is giving a reproof to someone wicked—a defect in him. 8 Do not reprove a ridiculer, that he may not hate you. Give a reproof to a wise person and he will love you. 9 Give to a wise person and he will become still wiser. Impart knowledge to someone righteous and he will increase in learning.

10 The fear of Jehovah is the start of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Most Holy One is what understanding is. 11 For by me your days will become many, and to you years of life will be added. 12 If you have become wise, you have become wise in your own behalf; and if you have ridiculed, you will bear [it], just you alone.

13 A woman of stupidity is boisterous. She is simplemindedness itself and has come to know nothing whatever. 14 And she has seated herself at the entrance of her house, upon a seat, [in] the high places of the town, 15 to call out to those passing along the way, those who are going straight ahead on their paths: 16 “Whoever is inexperienced, let him turn aside here.” And whoever is in want of heart—she has also said to him: 17 “Stolen waters themselves are sweet, and bread [eaten] in secrecy—it is pleasant.” 18 But he has not come to know that those impotent in death are there, that those called in by her are in the low places of Sheol.