Comparisons and Moral Lessons

251 These are more wise sayings of Solomon, copied out by the men of Hezekiah, king of Judah.

2 It is the glory of God to keep a thing secret: but the glory of kings is to have it searched out. 3 The heaven is high and the earth is deep, and the hearts of kings may not be searched out.

4 Take away the waste from silver, and a vessel will come out for the silver-worker. 5 Take away evil-doers from before the king, and the seat of his power will be made strong in righteousness.

6 Do not take glory for yourself before the king, and do not put yourself in the place of the great: 7 For it is better to have it said to you, Come up here; than for you to be put down in a lower place before the ruler.

8 Do not be quick to go to law about what you have seen, for what will you do in the end, when your neighbour has put you to shame? 9 Have a talk with your neighbour himself about your cause, but do not give away the secret of another: 10 Or your hearer may say evil of you, and your shame will not be turned away.

11 A word at the right time is like apples of gold in a network of silver. 12 Like a nose-ring of gold and an ornament of the best gold, is a wise man who says sharp words to an ear ready to give attention.

13 As the cold of snow in the time of grain-cutting, so is a true servant to those who send him; for he gives new life to the soul of his master.

14 As clouds and wind without rain, so is one who takes credit for an offering he has not given.

15 A judge is moved by one who for a long time undergoes wrongs without protest, and by a soft tongue even bone is broken.

16 If you have honey, take only as much as is enough for you; for fear that, being full of it, you may not be able to keep it down.

17 Let not your foot be frequently in your neighbour's house, or he may get tired of you, and his feeling be turned to hate.

18 One who gives false witness against his neighbour is a hammer and a sword and a sharp arrow.

19 Putting one's faith in a false man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth and a shaking foot.

20 Like one who takes off clothing in cold weather and like acid on a wound, is he who makes melody to a sad heart.

21 If your hater is in need of food, give him bread; and if he is in need of drink, give him water: 22 For so you will put coals of fire on his head, and the Lord will give you your reward.

23 As the north wind gives birth to rain, so is an angry face caused by a tongue saying evil secretly.

24 It is better to be living in an angle of the house-top, than with a bitter-tongued woman in a wide house.

25 As cold water to a tired soul, so is good news from a far country.

26 Like a troubled fountain and a dirty spring, is an upright man who has to give way before evil-doers.

27 It is not good to take much honey: so he who is not looking for honour will be honoured.

28 He whose spirit is uncontrolled is like an unwalled town which has been broken into.

261 Like snow in summer and rain when the grain is being cut, so honour is not natural for the foolish.

2 As the sparrow in her wandering and the swallow in her flight, so the curse does not come without a cause.

3 A whip for the horse, a mouth-bit for the ass, and a rod for the back of the foolish.

4 Do not give to the foolish man a foolish answer, or you will be like him. 5 Give a foolish man a foolish answer, or he will seem wise to himself.

6 He who sends news by the hand of a foolish man is cutting off his feet and drinking in damage. 7 The legs of one who has no power of walking are hanging loose; so is a wise saying in the mouth of the foolish. 8 Giving honour to a foolish man is like attempting to keep a stone fixed in a cord. 9 Like a thorn which goes up into the hand of a man overcome by drink, so is a wise saying in the mouth of a foolish man.

10 Like an archer wounding all who go by, is a foolish man overcome by drink.

11 Like a dog going back to the food which he has not been able to keep down, is the foolish man doing his foolish acts over again.

12 Have you seen a man who seems to himself to be wise? There is more hope for the foolish than for him.

13 The hater of work says, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets.

14 A door is turned on its pillar, and the hater of work on his bed.

15 The hater of work puts his hand deep into the basin: lifting it again to his mouth is a weariness to him.

16 The hater of work seems to himself wiser than seven men who are able to give an answer with good sense.

17 He who gets mixed up in a fight which is not his business, is like one who takes a dog by the ears while it is going by.

18 As one who is off his head sends about flaming sticks and arrows of death, 19 So is the man who gets the better of his neighbour by deceit, and says, Am I not doing so in sport?

20 Without wood, the fire goes out; and where there is no secret talk, argument is ended. 21 Like breath on coals and wood on fire, so a man given to argument gets a fight started. 22 The words of one who says evil of his neighbour secretly are like sweet food, they go down into the inner parts of the stomach.

23 Smooth lips and an evil heart are like a vessel of earth plated with silver waste.

24 With his lips the hater makes things seem what they are not, but deceit is stored up inside him; 25 When he says fair words, have no belief in him; for in his heart are seven evils: 26 Though his hate is covered with deceit, his sin will be seen openly before the meeting of the people.

27 He who makes a hole in the earth will himself go falling into it: and on him by whom a stone is rolled the stone will come back again.

28 A false tongue has hate for those who have clean hearts, and a smooth mouth is a cause of falling.

91 But there is no need for me to say anything in my letter about the giving to the saints: 2 For I have before made clear to those of Macedonia my pride in your ready mind, saying to them that Achaia has been ready for a year back; and a great number have been moved to do the same by your example. 3 But I have sent the brothers, so that the good things we said about you may be seen to be true, and that, as I said, you may be ready: 4 For fear that, if any from Macedonia come with me, and you are not ready, we (not to say, you) might be put to shame in this thing. 5 So it seemed to me wise for the brothers to go before, and see that the amount which you had undertaken to give was ready, so that it might be a cause for praise, and not as if we were making profit out of you.

6 But in the Writings it says, He who puts in only a small number of seeds, will get in the same; and he who puts them in from a full hand, will have produce in full measure from them. 7 Let every man do after the purpose of his heart; not giving with grief, or by force: for God takes pleasure in a ready giver. 8 And God is able to give you all grace in full measure; so that ever having enough of all things, you may be full of every good work: 9 As it is said in the Writings, He has sent out far and wide, he has given to the poor; his righteousness is for ever. 10 And he who gives seed for putting into the field and bread for food, will take care of the growth of your seed, at the same time increasing the fruits of your righteousness; 11 Your wealth being increased in everything, with a simple mind, causing praise to God through us. 12 For this work of giving not only takes care of the needs of the saints, but is the cause of much praise to God; 13 For when, through this work of giving, they see what you are, they give glory to God for the way in which you have given yourselves to the good news of Christ, and for the wealth of your giving to them and to all; 14 While their hearts go out to you in love and in prayer for you, because of the great grace of God which is in you. 15 Praise be to God for what he has given, which words have no power to say.