New English Translation
Introduction to the Book
1 The Proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:
2 To learn wisdom and moral instruction, and to discern wise counsel.
3 To receive moral instruction in skillful living, in righteousness, justice, and equity.
4 To impart shrewdness to the morally naive, and a discerning plan to the young person.
5 (Let the wise also hear and gain instruction, and let the discerning acquire guidance! )
6 To discern the meaning of a proverb and a parable, the sayings of the wise and their riddles.
Introduction to the Theme of the Book
7 Fearing the LORD is the beginning of moral knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
8 Listen, my child, to the instruction from your father, and do not forsake the teaching from your mother.
9 For they will be like an elegant garland on your head, and like pendants around your neck.
Admonition to Avoid Easy but Unjust Riches
10 My child, if sinners try to entice you, do not consent!
11 If they say, "Come with us! We will lie in wait to shed blood; we will ambush an innocent person capriciously.
12 We will swallow them alive like Sheol, those full of vigor like those going down to the Pit.
13 We will seize all kinds of precious wealth; we will fill our houses with plunder.
14 Join with us! We will all share equally in what we steal."
15 My child, do not go down their way, withhold yourself from their path;
16 for they are eager to inflict harm, and they hasten to shed blood.
17 Surely it is futile to spread a net in plain sight of any bird,
18 but these men lie in wait for their own blood, they ambush their own lives!
19 Such are the ways of all who gain profit unjustly; it takes away the life of those who obtain it!
Warning Against Disregarding Wisdom
20 Wisdom calls out in the street, she shouts loudly in the plazas;
21 at the head of the noisy streets she calls, in the entrances of the gates in the city she utters her words:
22 "How long will you simpletons love naivet?? How long will mockers delight in mockery and fools hate knowledge?
23 If only you will respond to my rebuke, then I will pour out my thoughts to you and I will make my words known to you.
24 However, because I called but you refused to listen, because I stretched out my hand but no one paid attention,
25 because you neglected all my advice, and did not comply with my rebuke,
26 so I myself will laugh when disaster strikes you, I will mock when what you dread comes,
27 when what you dread comes like a whirlwind, and disaster strikes you like a devastating storm, when distressing trouble comes on you.
28 Then they will call to me, but I will not answer; they will diligently seek me, but they will not find me.
29 Because they hated moral knowledge, and did not choose to fear the LORD,
30 they did not comply with my advice, they spurned all my rebuke.
31 Therefore they will eat from the fruit of their way, and they will be stuffed full of their own counsel.
32 For the waywardness of the simpletons will kill them, and the careless ease of fools will destroy them.
33 But the one who listens to me will live in security, and will be at ease from the dread of harm.
King James Version
1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel;
2 To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;
3 To receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, and judgment, and equity;
4 To give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion.
5 A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:
6 To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.
7 ¶ The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
8 My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
9 For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck.
10 ¶ My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.
11 If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause:
12 Let us swallow them up alive as the grave; and whole, as those that go down into the pit:
13 We shall find all precious substance, we shall fill our houses with spoil:
14 Cast in thy lot among us; let us all have one purse:
15 My son, walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path:
16 For their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood.
17 Surely in vain the net is spread in the sight of any bird.
18 And they lay wait for their own blood; they lurk privily for their own lives.
19 So are the ways of every one that is greedy of gain; which taketh away the life of the owners thereof.
20 ¶ Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets:
21 She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying,
22 How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?
23 Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.
24 ¶ Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded;
25 But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof:
26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;
27 When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.
28 Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:
29 For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD:
30 They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.
31 Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.
32 For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.
33 But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.