1The wisest of women builds her house,
but folly with her own hands tears it down.
2Whoever walks in uprightness fears the Lord,
but he who is devious in his ways despises him.
3By the mouth of a fool comes a rod for his back,1
but the lips of the wise will preserve them.
4Where there are no oxen, the manger is clean,
but abundant crops come by the strength of the ox.
5A faithful witness does not lie,
but a false witness breathes out lies.
6A scoffer seeks wisdom in vain,
but knowledge is easy for a man of understanding.
7Leave the presence of a fool,
for there you do not meet words of knowledge.
8The wisdom of the prudent is to discern his way,
but the folly of fools is deceiving.
9Fools mock at the guilt offering,
but the upright enjoy acceptance.2
10The heart knows its own bitterness,
and no stranger shares its joy.
11The house of the wicked will be destroyed,
but the tent of the upright will flourish.
12There is a way that seems right to a man,
but its end is the way to death.3
13Even in laughter the heart may ache,
and the end of joy may be grief.
14The backslider in heart will be filled with the fruit of his ways,
and a good man will be filled with the fruit of his ways.
15The simple believes everything,
but the prudent gives thought to his steps.
16One who is wise is cautious4 and turns away from evil,
but a fool is reckless and careless.
17A man of quick temper acts foolishly,
and a man of evil devices is hated.
18The simple inherit folly,
but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.
19The evil bow down before the good,
the wicked at the gates of the righteous.
20The poor is disliked even by his neighbor,
but the rich has many friends.
21Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner,
but blessed is he who is generous to the poor.
22Do they not go astray who devise evil?
Those who devise good meet5 steadfast love and faithfulness.
23In all toil there is profit,
but mere talk tends only to poverty.
24The crown of the wise is their wealth,
but the folly of fools brings folly.
25A truthful witness saves lives,
but one who breathes out lies is deceitful.
26In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence,
and his children will have a refuge.
27The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,
that one may turn away from the snares of death.
28In a multitude of people is the glory of a king,
but without people a prince is ruined.
29Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding,
but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly.
30A tranquil6 heart gives life to the flesh,
but envy7 makes the bones rot.
31Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker,
but he who is generous to the needy honors him.
32The wicked is overthrown through his evildoing,
but the righteous finds refuge in his death.
33Wisdom rests in the heart of a man of understanding,
but it makes itself known even in the midst of fools.8
34Righteousness exalts a nation,
but sin is a reproach to any people.
35A servant who deals wisely has the king's favor,
but his wrath falls on one who acts shamefully.
- 1 14:3 Or In the mouth of a fool is a rod of pride
- 2 14:9 Hebrew but among the upright is acceptance
- 3 14:12 Hebrew ways of death
- 4 14:16 Or fears [the Lord]
- 5 14:22 Or show
- 6 14:30 Or healing
- 7 14:30 Or jealousy
- 8 14:33 Or Wisdom rests quietly in the heart of a man of understanding, but makes itself known in the midst of fools
Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Text provided by the Crossway Bibles Web Service.