Proverbs 22-24 Bible in Basic English

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22 1  A good name is more to be desired than great wealth, and to be respected is better than silver and gold.

2  The man of wealth and the poor man come face to face: the Lord is the maker of them all.

3  The sharp man sees the evil and takes cover: the simple go straight on and get into trouble.

4  The reward of a gentle spirit and the fear of the Lord is wealth and honour and life.

5  Thorns and nets are in the way of the twisted: he who keeps watch over his soul will be far from them.

6  If a child is trained up in the right way, even when he is old he will not be turned away from it.

7  The man of wealth has rule over the poor, and he who gets into debt is a servant to his creditor.

8  By planting the seed of evil a man will get in the grain of sorrow, and the rod of his wrath will be broken.

9  He who is kind will have a blessing, for he gives of his bread to the poor.

10  Send away the man of pride, and argument will go out; truly fighting and shame will come to an end.

11  He whose heart is clean is dear to the Lord; for the grace of his lips the king will be his friend.

12  The eyes of the Lord keep knowledge, but by him the acts of the false man will be overturned.

13  The hater of work says, There is a lion outside: I will be put to death in the streets.

14  The mouth of strange women is a deep hole: he with whom the Lord is angry will go down into it.

15  Foolish ways are deep-seated in the heart of a child, but the rod of punishment will send them far from him.

16  He who is cruel to the poor for the purpose of increasing his profit, and he who gives to the man of wealth, will only come to be in need.

Precepts and Warnings

17  Let your ear be bent down for hearing my words, and let your heart give thought to knowledge. 18  For it is a delight to keep them in your heart, to have them ready on your lips. 19  So that your faith may be in the Lord, I have made them clear to you this day, even to you. 20  Have I not put in writing for you thirty sayings, with wise suggestions and knowledge, 21  To make you see how certain are true words, so that you may give a true answer to those who put questions to you?

22  Do not take away the property of the poor man because he is poor, or be cruel to the crushed ones when they come before the judge: 23  For the Lord will give support to their cause, and take the life of those who take their goods.

24  Do not be friends with a man who is given to wrath; do not go in the company of an angry man: 25  For fear of learning his ways and making a net ready for your soul.

26  Be not one of those who give their hands in an agreement, or of those who make themselves responsible for debts: 27  If you have nothing with which to make payment, he will take away your bed from under you.

28  Let not the old landmark be moved which your fathers have put in place.

29  Have you seen a man who is expert in his business? he will take his place before kings; his place will not be among low persons.

23 1  When you take your seat at the feast with a ruler, give thought with care to what is before you; 2  And put a knife to your throat, if you have a strong desire for food. 3  Have no desire for his delicate food, for it is the bread of deceit.

4  Take no care to get wealth; let there be an end to your desire for money. 5  Are your eyes lifted up to it? it is gone: for wealth takes to itself wings, like an eagle in flight up to heaven.

6  Do not take the food of him who has an evil eye, or have any desire for his delicate meat: 7  For as the thoughts of his heart are, so is he: Take food and drink, he says to you; but his heart is not with you. 8  The food which you have taken will come up again, and your pleasing words will be wasted.

9  Say nothing in the hearing of a foolish man, for he will put no value on the wisdom of your words.

10  Do not let the landmark of the widow be moved, and do not go into the fields of those who have no father; 11  For their saviour is strong, and he will take up their cause against you.

12  Give your heart to teaching, and your ears to the words of knowledge. 13  Do not keep back training from the child: for even if you give him blows with the rod, it will not be death to him. 14  Give him blows with the rod, and keep his soul safe from the underworld. 15  My son, if your heart becomes wise, I, even I, will be glad in heart; 16  And my thoughts in me will be full of joy when your lips say right things.

17  Have no envy of sinners in your heart, but keep in the fear of the Lord all through the day; 18  For without doubt there is a future, and your hope will not be cut off.

19  Give ear, my son, and be wise, guiding your heart in the right way. 20  Do not be among those who give themselves to wine-drinking, or among those who make themselves full with meat: 21  For those who take delight in drink and feasting will come to be in need; and through love of sleep a man will be poorly clothed. 22  Give ear to your father whose child you are, and do not keep honour from your mother when she is old. 23  Get for yourself that which is true, and do not let it go for money; get wisdom and teaching and good sense. 24  The father of the upright man will be glad, and he who has a wise child will have joy because of him. 25  Let your father and your mother be glad, let her who gave you birth have joy. 26  My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes take delight in my ways. 27  For a loose woman is a deep hollow, and a strange woman is a narrow water-hole. 28  Yes, she is waiting secretly like a beast for its food, and deceit by her is increased among men.

29  Who says, Oh! who says, Ah! who has violent arguments, who has grief, who has wounds without cause, whose eyes are dark? 30  Those who are seated late over the wine: those who go looking for mixed wine. 31  Keep your eyes from looking on the wine when it is red, when its colour is bright in the cup, when it goes smoothly down: 32  In the end, its bite is like that of a snake, its wound like the wound of a poison-snake. 33  Your eyes will see strange things, and you will say twisted things. 34  Yes, you will be like him who takes his rest on the sea, or on the top of a sail-support. 35  They have overcome me, you will say, and I have no pain; they gave me blows without my feeling them: when will I be awake from my wine? I will go after it again.

24 1  Have no envy for evil men, or any desire to be with them: 2  For the purposes of their hearts are destruction, and their lips are talking of trouble.

3  The building of a house is by wisdom, and by reason it is made strong: 4  And by knowledge its rooms are full of all dear and pleasing things. 5  A wise man is strong; and a man of knowledge makes strength greater. 6  For by wise guiding you will overcome in war: and in a number of wise guides there is salvation.

7  Wisdom is outside the power of the foolish: he keeps his mouth shut in the public place. 8  He whose purposes are bad will be named a man of evil designs. 9  The purpose of the foolish is sin: and the hater of authority is disgusting to others.

10  If you give way in the day of trouble, your strength is small.

11  Be the saviour of those who are given up to death, and do not keep back help from those who are slipping to destruction. 12  If you say, See, we had no knowledge of this: does not the tester of hearts give thought to it? and he who keeps your soul, has he no knowledge of it? and will he not give to every man the reward of his work?

13  My son, take honey, for it is good; and the flowing honey, which is sweet to your taste: 14  So let your desire be for wisdom: if you have it, there will be a future, and your hope will not be cut off.

15  Do not keep a secret watch, O evil-doer, against the fields of the upright man, or send destruction on his resting-place: 16  For an upright man, after falling seven times, will get up again: but trouble is the downfall of the evil.

17  Do not be glad at the fall of your hater, and let not your heart have joy at his downfall: 18  For fear that the Lord may see it, and it may be evil in his eyes, and his wrath may be turned away from him.

19  Do not be troubled because of evil-doers, or have envy of sinners: 20  For there will be no future for the evil man; the light of sinners will be put out.

21  My son, go in fear of the Lord and the king: have nothing to do with those who are in high positions: 22  For their downfall will come suddenly; and who has knowledge of the destruction of those in high positions?

23  These are more sayings of the wise: To have respect for a person's position when judging is not good. 24  He who says to the evil-doer, You are upright, will be cursed by peoples and hated by nations. 25  But those who say sharp words to him will have delight, and a blessing of good will come on them. 26  He gives a kiss with his lips who gives a right answer.

27  Put your work in order outside, and make it ready in the field; and after that, see to the building of your house.

28  Do not be a violent witness against your neighbour, or let your lips say what is false. 29  Say not, I will do to him as he has done to me; I will give the man the reward of his work.

30  I went by the field of the hater of work, and by the vine-garden of the man without sense; 31  And it was all full of thorns, and covered with waste plants, and its stone wall was broken down. 32  Then looking at it, I gave thought: I saw, and I got teaching from it. 33  A little sleep, a little rest, a little folding of the hands in sleep: 34  So loss will come on you like an outlaw, and your need like an armed man.

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