28 The wicked person flees when there is no one pursuing, 1
but the righteous person is as confident 2 as a lion.
2 When a country is rebellious 3 it has many princes, 4
but by someone who is discerning and knowledgeable 5 order is maintained. 6
3 A poor person 7 who oppresses the weak
is like 8 a driving rain without food. 9
4 Those who forsake the law 10 praise the wicked, 11
but those who keep the law contend 12 with them.
5 Evil people 13 do not understand justice, 14
but those who seek the Lord 15 understand it all.
6 A poor person 16 who walks in his integrity is better
than one who is perverse in his ways 17 even though 18 he is rich. 19
7 The one who keeps the law 20 is a discerning child, 21
but a companion of gluttons brings shame 22 to his parents. 23
8 The one who increases his wealth by increasing interest 24
gathers it for someone who is gracious 25 to the needy.
9 The one who turns away his ear 26 from hearing the law,
even his prayer 27 is an abomination. 28
10 The one who leads the upright astray in an evil way
will himself fall into his own pit, 29
but the blameless will inherit what is good. 30
11 A rich person 31 is wise in his own eyes, 32
but a discerning poor person can evaluate him properly. 33
12 When the righteous rejoice, 34 great is the glory, 35
but when the wicked rise to power, people are sought out. 36
13 The one who covers 37 his transgressions will not prosper, 38
but whoever confesses them and forsakes them will find mercy. 39
14 Blessed is the one who is always cautious, 40
but whoever hardens his heart 41 will fall into evil.
15 Like 42 a roaring lion or a roving bear, 43
so is a wicked ruler over a poor people. 44
16 The prince who is a great oppressor lacks wisdom, 45
but the one who hates 46 unjust gain will prolong his days.
17 The one who is tormented 47 by the murder 48 of another will flee to the pit; 49
let no one support him.
18 The one who walks blamelessly will be delivered, 50
but whoever is perverse in his ways will fall 51 at once. 52
19 The one who works his land will be satisfied with food, 53
but whoever chases daydreams 54 will have his fill 55 of poverty.
20 A faithful person 56 will have an abundance of blessings,
but the one who hastens 57 to gain riches will not go unpunished.
21 To show partiality 58 is terrible, 59
for a person will transgress over the smallest piece of bread. 60
22 The stingy person 61 hastens after riches
and does not know that poverty will overtake him. 62
23 The one who reproves 63 another 64 will in the end 65 find more favor
than the one who flatters 66 with the tongue.
24 The one who robs 67 his father and mother and says, “There is no transgression,”
is a companion 68 to the one 69 who destroys.
25 The greedy person 70 stirs up dissension, 71
but the one who trusts 72 in the Lord will prosper. 73
26 The one who trusts in his own heart 74 is a fool,
but the one who walks in wisdom 75 will escape. 76
27 The one who gives to the poor will not lack, 77
but whoever shuts his eyes to them 78 will receive 79 many curses. 80
28 When the wicked gain control, 81 people 82 hide themselves, 83
but when they perish, 84 the righteous increase.
29 The one who stiffens his neck 1 after numerous rebukes 2
will suddenly be destroyed 3 without remedy. 4
2 When the righteous become numerous, 5 the people rejoice;
when the wicked rule, the people groan. 6
3 The man 7 who loves wisdom brings joy to his father, 8
but whoever associates 9 with prostitutes wastes 10 his wealth. 11
4 A king brings stability 12 to a land 13 by justice,
but one who exacts tribute 14 tears it down.
5 The one 15 who flatters 16 his neighbor
spreads a net 17 for his steps. 18
6 In the transgression of an evil person there is a snare, 19
but a righteous person can sing 20 and rejoice. 21
7 The righteous person cares for 22 the legal rights 23 of the poor;
the wicked does not understand such 24 knowledge.
8 Scornful people 25 inflame 26 a city, 27
but those who are wise turn away wrath.
9 If a wise person 28 goes to court 29 with a foolish person,
there is no peace 30 whether he is angry or laughs. 31
10 Bloodthirsty people 32 hate someone with integrity; 33
as for the upright, they seek his life. 34
11 A fool lets fly with all his temper, 35
but a wise person keeps it back. 36
12 If a ruler listens to 37 lies, 38
all his ministers 39 will be wicked. 40
13 The poor person and the oppressor 41 have this in common: 42
the Lord gives light 43 to the eyes of them both.
14 If a king judges the poor in truth, 44
his throne 45 will be established forever.
15 A rod and reproof 46 impart 47 wisdom,
but a child who is unrestrained 48 brings shame 49 to his mother. 50
16 When the wicked increase, 51 transgression increases,
but the righteous will see 52 their downfall.
17 Discipline your child, and he will give you rest; 53
he will bring you 54 happiness. 55
18 When there is no prophetic vision 56 the people cast off restraint, 57
but the one who keeps the law, 58 blessed is he! 59
19 A servant 60 cannot be corrected 61 by words,
for although 62 he understands, there is no answer. 63
20 Do you see someone 64 who is hasty in his words? 65
There is more hope for a fool than for him. 66
21 If 67 someone pampers his servant from youth,
he will be a weakling 68 in the end.
22 An angry person 69 stirs up dissension,
and a wrathful person 70 is abounding in transgression. 71
23 A person’s pride 72 will bring him low, 73
but one who has a lowly spirit 74 will gain honor.
24 Whoever shares with a thief 75 is his own enemy; 76
he hears the oath to testify, 77 but does not talk.
25 The fear of people 78 becomes 79 a snare, 80
but whoever trusts in the Lord will be set on high. 81
26 Many people seek the face 82 of a ruler,
but it is from the Lord that one receives justice. 83
27 An unjust person is an abomination to the righteous,
and the one who lives an upright life is an abomination to the wicked. 84
30 The words of Agur, the son of Jakeh; an oracle: 1
This 2 man says 3 to Ithiel, to Ithiel and to Ukal: 4
2 Surely 5 I am more brutish 6 than any other human being, 7
and I do not have human understanding; 8
3 I have not learned wisdom,
nor do I have knowledge 9 of the Holy One. 10
4 Who has ascended into heaven, and then descended? 11
Who has gathered up the winds in his fists? 12
Who has bound up the waters in his cloak? 13
Who has established all the ends of the earth? 14
What is his name, and what is his son’s name? 15 – if you know!
5 Every word of God is purified; 16
he is like 17 a shield for those who take refuge in him. 18
6 Do not add to his words,
lest he reprove you, and prove you to be a liar. 19
7 Two things 20 I ask from you; 21
do not refuse me before I die:
8 Remove falsehood and lies 22 far from me;
do not give me poverty or riches,
feed me with my allotted portion 23 of bread, 24
9 lest I become satisfied and act deceptively 25
and say, “Who is the Lord?”
Or lest I become poor and steal
and demean 26 the name of my God.
10 Do not slander 27 a servant to his master,
lest he curse you, and you are found guilty. 28
11 There is a generation 29 who curse their fathers
and do not bless their mothers. 30
12 There is a generation who are pure in their own eyes
and yet are not washed 31 from their filthiness. 32
13 There is a generation whose eyes are so lofty, 33
and whose eyelids are lifted up disdainfully. 34
14 There is a generation whose teeth are like 35 swords 36
and whose molars 37 are like knives
to devour 38 the poor from the earth
and the needy from among the human race.
15 The leech 39 has two daughters: 40
“Give! Give!” 41
There are three things that are never satisfied,
four 42 that never say, “Enough” 43 –
16 the grave, 44 the barren womb, 45
land that is not satisfied with water,
and fire that never says, “Enough!” 46
17 The eye 47 that mocks at a father
and despises obeying 48 a mother –
the ravens of the valley will peck it out
and the young vultures will eat it. 49
18 There are three things that are too wonderful for me, 50
four that I do not understand:
19 the way 51 of an eagle in the sky,
the way of a snake on a rock,
the way of a ship in the sea,
and the way of a man with a woman. 52
20 This is the way 53 of an adulterous 54 woman:
she eats and wipes her mouth 55
and says, “I have not done wrong.” 56
21 Under three things the earth trembles, 57
and under four things it cannot bear up:
22 under a servant 58 who becomes king,
under a fool who is stuffed with food, 59
23 under an unloved 60 woman who is married,
and under a female servant who dispossesses 61 her mistress.
24 There are four things on earth that are small, 62
but they are exceedingly wise: 63
25 ants are creatures with little strength,
but they prepare 64 their food in the summer;
26 rock badgers 65 are creatures with little power,
but they make their homes in the crags;
27 locusts have no king,
but they all go forward by ranks; 66
28 a lizard 67 you can catch with the hand,
but it gets into the palaces of the king. 68
29 There are three things that are magnificent 69 in their step,
four things that move about magnificently: 70
30 a lion, mightiest 71 of the beasts,
who does not retreat from anything;
31 a strutting rooster, 72 a male goat,
and a king with his army around him. 73
32 If you have done foolishly by exalting yourself 74
or if you have planned evil,
put 75 your hand over your mouth!
33 For as the churning 76 of milk produces butter
and as punching the nose produces blood,
so stirring up anger 77 produces strife. 78