The Beneficence of Wisdom
4 1 Hear, ye sons, the instruction of a father, And give attention to know understanding. 2 For good learning I have given to you, My law forsake not. 3 For, a son I have been to my father—tender, And an only one before my mother. 4 And he directeth me, and he saith to me: 'Let thy heart retain my words, Keep my commands, and live. 5 Get wisdom, get understanding, Do not forget, nor turn away From the sayings of my mouth. 6 Forsake her not, and she doth preserve thee, Love her, and she doth keep thee. 7 The first thing 'is' wisdom—get wisdom, And with all thy getting get understanding. 8 Exalt her, and she doth lift thee up, She honoureth thee, when thou dost embrace her. 9 She giveth to thy head a wreath of grace, A crown of beauty she doth give thee freely. 10 Hear, my son, and receive my sayings, And years of life 'are' multiplied to thee. 11 In a way of wisdom I have directed thee, I have caused thee to tread in paths of uprightness. 12 In thy walking thy step is not straitened, And if thou runnest, thou stumblest not. 13 Lay hold on instruction, do not desist, Keep her, for she 'is' thy life.
14 Into the path of the wicked enter not, And be not happy in a way of evil doers. 15 Avoid it, pass not over into it, Turn aside from it, and pass on. 16 For they sleep not if they do not evil, And their sleep hath been taken violently away, If they cause not 'some' to stumble. 17 For they have eaten bread of wickedness, And wine of violence they drink. 18 And the path of the righteous 'is' as a shining light, Going and brightening till the day is established, 19 The way of the wicked 'is' as darkness, They have not known at what they stumble.
20 My son, to my words give attention, To my sayings incline thine ear, 21 Let them not turn aside from thine eyes, Preserve them in the midst of thy heart. 22 For life they 'are' to those finding them, And to all their flesh healing. 23 Above every charge keep thy heart, For out of it 'are' the outgoings of life. 24 Turn aside from thee a froward mouth, And perverse lips put far from thee, 25 Thine eyes do look straightforward, And thine eyelids look straight before thee. 26 Ponder thou the path of thy feet, And all thy ways 'are' established. 27 Incline not 'to' the right or to the left, Turn aside thy foot from evil!
Warning against Unchastity
5 1 My son! to my wisdom give attention, To mine understanding incline thine ear, 2 To observe thoughtfulness, And knowledge do thy lips keep. 3 For the lips of a strange woman drop honey, And smoother than oil 'is' her mouth, 4 And her latter end 'is' bitter as wormwood, Sharp as a sword 'with' mouths. 5 Her feet are going down to death, Sheol do her steps take hold of. 6 The path of life—lest thou ponder, Moved have her paths—thou knowest not. 7 And now, ye sons, hearken to me, And turn not from sayings of my mouth. 8 Keep far from off her thy way, And come not near unto the opening of her house, 9 Lest thou give to others thy honour, And thy years to the fierce, 10 Lest strangers be filled 'with' thy power, And thy labours in the house of a stranger, 11 And thou hast howled in thy latter end, In the consumption of thy flesh and thy food, 12 And hast said, 'How have I hated instruction, And reproof hath my heart despised, 13 And I have not hearkened to the voice of my directors, And to my teachers have not inclined mine ear. 14 As a little thing I have been all evil, In the midst of an assembly and a company.
15 Drink waters out of thine own cistern, Even flowing ones out of thine own well. 16 Let thy fountains be scattered abroad, In broad places rivulets of waters. 17 Let them be to thee for thyself, And not to strangers with thee. 18 Let thy fountain be blessed, And rejoice because of the wife of thy youth, 19 A hind of loves, and a roe of grace! Let her loves satisfy thee at all times, In her love magnify thyself continually. 20 And why dost thou magnify thyself, My son, with a stranger? And embrace the bosom of a strange woman? 21 For over-against the eyes of Jehovah are the ways of each, And all his paths He is pondering. 22 His own iniquities do capture the wicked, And with the ropes of his sin he is holden. 23 He dieth without instruction, And in the abundance of his folly magnifieth himself!
Warning against Idleness and Falsehood
6 1 My son! if thou hast been surety for thy friend, Hast stricken for a stranger thy hand, 2 Hast been snared with sayings of thy mouth, Hast been captured with sayings of thy mouth, 3 Do this now, my son, and be delivered, For thou hast come into the hand of thy friend. Go, trample on thyself, and strengthen thy friend, 4 Give not sleep to thine eyes, And slumber to thine eyelids, 5 Be delivered as a roe from the hand, And as a bird from the hand of a fowler.
6 Go unto the ant, O slothful one, See her ways and be wise; 7 Which hath not captain, overseer, and ruler, 8 She doth prepare in summer her bread, She hath gathered in harvest her food. 9 Till when, O slothful one, dost thou lie? When dost thou arise from thy sleep? 10 A little sleep, a little slumber, A little clasping of the hands to rest, 11 And thy poverty hath come as a traveller, And thy want as an armed man.
12 A man of worthlessness, a man of iniquity, Walking 'with' perverseness of mouth, 13 Winking with his eyes, speaking with his feet, Directing with his fingers, 14 Frowardness 'is' in his heart, devising evil at all times, Contentions he sendeth forth. 15 Therefore suddenly cometh his calamity, Instantly he is broken—and no healing. 16 These six hath Jehovah hated, Yea, seven 'are' abominations to His soul. 17 Eyes high—tongues false—And hands shedding innocent blood— 18 A heart devising thoughts of vanity—Feet hasting to run to evil— 19 A false witness 'who' doth breathe out lies—And one sending forth contentions between brethren.
Warning against Adultery
20 Keep, my son, the command of thy father, And leave not the law of thy mother. 21 Bind them on thy heart continually, Tie them on thy neck. 22 In thy going up and down, it leadeth thee, In thy lying down, it watcheth over thee, And thou hast awaked—it talketh 'with' thee. 23 For a lamp 'is' the command, And the law a light, And a way of life 'are' reproofs of instruction, 24 To preserve thee from an evil woman, From the flattery of the tongue of a strange woman. 25 Desire not her beauty in thy heart, And let her not take thee with her eyelids. 26 For a harlot consumeth unto a cake of bread, And an adulteress the precious soul hunteth. 27 Doth a man take fire into his bosom, And are his garments not burnt? 28 Doth a man walk on the hot coals, And are his feet not scorched? 29 So 'is' he who hath gone in unto the wife of his neighbour, None who doth touch her is innocent. 30 They do not despise the thief, When he stealeth to fill his soul when he is hungry, 31 And being found he repayeth sevenfold, All the substance of his house he giveth. 32 He who committeth adultery 'with' a woman lacketh heart, He is destroying his soul who doth it. 33 A stroke and shame he doth find, And his reproach is not wiped away, 34 For jealousy 'is' the fury of a man, And he doth not spare in a day of vengeance. 35 He accepteth not the appearance of any atonement, Yea, he doth not consent, Though thou dost multiply bribes!