Exhortations to Obedience
3 1 My son, forget not my law; But let thy heart keep my commandments: 2 For length of days, and years of life, And peace, will they add to thee. 3 Let not kindness and truth forsake thee: Bind them about thy neck; Write them upon the tablet of thy heart: 4 So shalt thou find favor and good understanding In the sight of God and man. 5 Trust in Jehovah with all thy heart, And lean not upon thine own understanding: 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, And he will direct thy paths.
7 Be not wise in thine own eyes; Fear Jehovah, and depart from evil: 8 It will be health to thy navel, And marrow to thy bones. 9 Honor Jehovah with thy substance, And with the first-fruits of all thine increase: 10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, And thy vats shall overflow with new wine. 11 My son, despise not the chastening of Jehovah; Neither be weary of his reproof: 12 For whom Jehovah loveth he reproveth; Even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.
13 Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, And the man that getteth understanding. 14 For the gaining of it is better than the gaining of silver, And the profit thereof than fine gold. 15 She is more precious than rubies: And none of the things thou canst desire are to be compared unto her. 16 Length of days is in her right hand; In her left hand are riches and honor. 17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, And all her paths are peace. 18 She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: And happy is every one that retaineth her. 19 Jehovah by wisdom founded the earth; By understanding he established the heavens. 20 By his knowledge the depths were broken up, And the skies drop down the dew.
21 My son, let them not depart from thine eyes; Keep sound wisdom and discretion: 22 So shall they be life unto thy soul, And grace to thy neck. 23 Then shalt thou walk in thy way securely, And thy foot shall not stumble. 24 When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: Yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet. 25 Be not afraid of sudden fear, Neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh: 26 For Jehovah will be thy confidence, And will keep thy foot from being taken.
27 Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, When it is in the power of thy hand to do it. 28 Say not unto thy neighbor, Go, and come again, And to-morrow I will give; When thou hast it by thee. 29 Devise not evil against thy neighbor, Seeing he dwelleth securely by thee. 30 Strive not with a man without cause, If he have done thee no harm. 31 Envy thou not the man of violence, And choose none of his ways. 32 For the perverse is an abomination to Jehovah; But his friendship is with the upright. 33 The curse of Jehovah is in the house of the wicked; But he blesseth the habitation of the righteous. 34 Surely he scoffeth at the scoffers; But he giveth grace unto the lowly. 35 The wise shall inherit glory; But shame shall be the promotion of fools.
The Beneficence of Wisdom
4 1 Hear, [my] sons, the instruction of a father, And attend to know understanding: 2 For I give you good doctrine; Forsake ye not my law. 3 For I was a son unto my father, Tender and only beloved in the sight of my mother. 4 And he taught me, and said unto me: Let thy heart retain my words; Keep my commandments, and live; 5 Get wisdom, get understanding; Forget not, neither decline from the words of my mouth; 6 Forsake her not, and she will preserve thee; Love her, and she will keep thee. 7 Wisdom [is] the principal thing; [Therefore] get wisdom; Yea, with all thy getting get understanding. 8 Exalt her, and she will promote thee; She will bring thee to honor, when thou dost embrace her. 9 She will give to thy head a chaplet of grace; A crown of beauty will she deliver to thee. 10 Hear, O my son, and receive my sayings; And the years of thy life shall be many. 11 I have taught thee in the way of wisdom; I have led thee in paths of uprightness. 12 When thou goest, thy steps shall not be straitened; And if thou runnest, thou shalt not stumble. 13 Take fast hold of instruction; Let her not go: Keep her; For she is thy life.
14 Enter not into the path of the wicked, And walk not in the way of evil men. 15 Avoid it, pass not by it; Turn from it, and pass on. 16 For they sleep not, except they do evil; And their sleep is taken away, unless they cause some to fall. 17 For they eat the bread of wickedness, And drink the wine of violence. 18 But the path of the righteous is as the dawning light, That shineth more and more unto the perfect day. 19 The way of the wicked is as darkness: They know not at what they stumble.
20 My son, attend to my words; Incline thine ear unto my sayings. 21 Let them not depart from thine eyes; Keep them in the midst of thy heart. 22 For they are life unto those that find them, And health to all their flesh. 23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; For out of it are the issues of life. 24 Put away from thee a wayward mouth, And perverse lips put far from thee. 25 Let thine eyes look right on, And let thine eyelids look straight before thee. 26 Make level the path of thy feet, And let all thy ways be established. 27 Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: Remove thy foot from evil.
Warning against Unchastity
5 1 My son, attend unto my wisdom; Incline thine ear to my understanding: 2 That thou mayest preserve discretion, And that thy lips may keep knowledge. 3 For the lips of a strange woman drop honey, And her mouth is smoother than oil: 4 But in the end she is bitter as wormwood, Sharp as a two-edged sword. 5 Her feet go down to death; Her steps take hold on Sheol; 6 So that she findeth not the level path of life: Her ways are unstable, [and] she knoweth [it] not. 7 Now therefore, [my] sons, hearken unto me, And depart not from the words of my mouth. 8 Remove thy way far from her, And come not nigh the door of her house; 9 Lest thou give thine honor unto others, And thy years unto the cruel; 10 Lest strangers be filled with thy strength, And thy labors [be] in the house of an alien, 11 And thou mourn at thy latter end, When thy flesh and thy body are consumed, 12 And say, How have I hated instruction, And my heart despised reproof; 13 Neither have I obeyed the voice of my teachers, Nor inclined mine ear to them that instructed me! 14 I was well-nigh in all evil In the midst of the assembly and congregation.
15 Drink waters out of thine own cistern, And running waters out of thine own well. 16 Should thy springs be dispersed abroad, And streams of water in the streets? 17 Let them be for thyself alone, And not for strangers with thee. 18 Let thy fountain be blessed; And rejoice in the wife of thy youth. 19 [As] a loving hind and a pleasant doe, Let her breasts satisfy thee at all times; And be thou ravished always with her love. 20 For why shouldest thou, my son, be ravished with a strange woman, And embrace the bosom of a foreigner? 21 For the ways of man are before the eyes of Jehovah; And he maketh level all his paths. 22 His own iniquities shall take the wicked, And he shall be holden with the cords of his sin. 23 He shall die for lack of instruction; And in the greatness of his folly he shall go astray.
1 1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus through the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints that are in the whole of Achaia: 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 Blessed [be] the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort; 4 who comforteth us in all our affliction, that we may be able to comfort them that are in any affliction, through the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound unto us, even so our comfort also aboundeth through Christ. 6 But whether we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; or whether we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which worketh in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer:
7 and our hope for you is stedfast; knowing that, as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so also are ye of the comfort. 8 For we would not have you ignorant, brethren, concerning our affliction which befell [us] in Asia, that we were weighed down exceedingly, beyond our power, insomuch that we despaired even of life: 9 yea, we ourselves have had the sentence of death within ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God who raiseth the dead: 10 who delivered us out of so great a death, and will deliver: on whom we have set our hope that he will also still deliver us; 11 ye also helping together on our behalf by your supplication; that, for the gift bestowed upon us by means of many, thanks may be given by many persons on our behalf.
The Postponement of Paul's Visit
12 For our glorifying is this, the testimony of our conscience, that in holiness and sincerity of God, not in fleshly wisdom but in the grace of God, we behaved ourselves in the world, and more abundantly to you-ward. 13 For we write no other things unto you, than what ye read or even acknowledge, and I hope ye will acknowledge unto the end: 14 as also ye did acknowledge us in part, that we are your glorying, even as ye also are ours, in the day of our Lord Jesus.
15 And in this confidence I was minded to come first unto you, that ye might have a second benefit; 16 and by you to pass into Macedonia, and again from Macedonia to come unto you, and of you to be set forward on my journey unto Judaea. 17 When I therefore was thus minded, did I show fickleness? or the things that I purpose, do I purpose according to the flesh, that with me there should be the yea yea and the nay nay? 18 But as God is faithful, our word toward you is not yea and nay. 19 For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us, [even] by me and Silvanus and Timothy, was not yea and nay, but in him is yea. 20 For how many soever be the promises of God, in him is the yea: wherefore also through him is the Amen, unto the glory of God through us. 21 Now he that establisheth us with you in Christ, and anointed us, is God; 22 who also sealed us, and gave [us] the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts. 23 But I call God for a witness upon my soul, that to spare you I forbare to come unto Corinth. 24 Not that we have lordship over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for in faith ye stand fast.