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a Bible passage

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Do not envy the wicked,

nor desire to be with them;


for their minds devise violence,

and their lips talk of mischief.



By wisdom a house is built,

and by understanding it is established;


by knowledge the rooms are filled

with all precious and pleasant riches.


Wise warriors are mightier than strong ones,

and those who have knowledge than those who have strength;


for by wise guidance you can wage your war,

and in abundance of counselors there is victory.


Wisdom is too high for fools;

in the gate they do not open their mouths.



Whoever plans to do evil

will be called a mischief-maker.


The devising of folly is sin,

and the scoffer is an abomination to all.



If you faint in the day of adversity,

your strength being small;


if you hold back from rescuing those taken away to death,

those who go staggering to the slaughter;


if you say, “Look, we did not know this”—

does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?

Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it?

And will he not repay all according to their deeds?



My child, eat honey, for it is good,

and the drippings of the honeycomb are sweet to your taste.


Know that wisdom is such to your soul;

if you find it, you will find a future,

and your hope will not be cut off.



Do not lie in wait like an outlaw against the home of the righteous;

do no violence to the place where the righteous live;


for though they fall seven times, they will rise again;

but the wicked are overthrown by calamity.



Do not rejoice when your enemies fall,

and do not let your heart be glad when they stumble,


or else the Lord will see it and be displeased,

and turn away his anger from them.



Do not fret because of evildoers.

Do not envy the wicked;


for the evil have no future;

the lamp of the wicked will go out.



My child, fear the Lord and the king,

and do not disobey either of them;


for disaster comes from them suddenly,

and who knows the ruin that both can bring?


Further Sayings of the Wise


These also are sayings of the wise:


Partiality in judging is not good.


Whoever says to the wicked, “You are innocent,”

will be cursed by peoples, abhorred by nations;


but those who rebuke the wicked will have delight,

and a good blessing will come upon them.


One who gives an honest answer

gives a kiss on the lips.



Prepare your work outside,

get everything ready for you in the field;

and after that build your house.



Do not be a witness against your neighbor without cause,

and do not deceive with your lips.


Do not say, “I will do to others as they have done to me;

I will pay them back for what they have done.”



I passed by the field of one who was lazy,

by the vineyard of a stupid person;


and see, it was all overgrown with thorns;

the ground was covered with nettles,

and its stone wall was broken down.


Then I saw and considered it;

I looked and received instruction.


A little sleep, a little slumber,

a little folding of the hands to rest,


and poverty will come upon you like a robber,

and want, like an armed warrior.


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Pr 24:1-34.

1, 2. (Compare Pr 23:3, 17; Ps 37:1).

2. studieth—meditateth.

talk … mischief—Their expressed purposes are to do evil.

3, 4. (Compare Pr 14:1; Isa 54:14).

house—including the family.

4. by knowledge … riches—(Pr 8:18; 21:20).

5, 6. The general statement (Ec 9:16, 18) is specially illustrated (compare Pr 21:22; Ps 144:1).

7. (Compare Pr 14:16).

in the gate—(Compare Pr 22:22).

8. So called even if he fails to do evil.

9. Same thought varied.

10. Literally, "If thou fail in the day of straits (adversity), strait (or, small) is thy strength," which is then truly tested.

11, 12. Neglect of known duty is sin (Jas 4:17).

ready—literally, "bowing down"

to be slain—that is, unjustly. God's retributive justice cannot be avoided by professed ignorance.

13, 14. As delicious food whets the appetite, so should the rewards of wisdom excite us to seek it.

14. reward—literally, "after part," the proper result (compare Pr 23:18; Ps 37:37, 38).

15, 16. The plots of the wicked against the good, though partially, shall not be fully successful (Ps 37:24); while the wicked, falling under penal evil, find no help.

16. seven times—often, or many (Pr 6:16, 31; 9:1).

17, 18. Yet let none rejoice over the fate of evildoers, lest God punish their wrong spirit by relieving the sufferer (compare Pr 17:5; Job 31:29).

19, 20. (Ps 37:1, 38; 18:28).

20. candle—or, "prosperity"; it shall come to an end (Pr 13:9; 20:20).

21, 22. A warning against impiety and resistance to lawful rule (Ro 13:1-7; 1Pe 2:17).

meddle … change—(Compare Margin), literally, "mingle not yourself," avoid the society of restless persons.

22. their calamity, &c.—either what God and the king inflict, or what changers and their company suffer; better the first.

23. These … wise—literally, "are of the wise," as authors (compare "Psalms of David," Hebrew). "These" refers to the verses following, Pr 24:24-34.

to have respect—literally, "to discern faces," show partiality,

24, 25. of which an example is justifying the wicked, to which is opposed, rebuking him, which has a blessing.

26. kiss his lips—love and obey, do homage (Ps 2:12; So 8:1).

right answer—literally, "plain words" (compare Pr 8:9), opposed to deceptive, or obscure.

27. Prepare … in the field—Secure, by diligence, a proper support, and then build; provide necessaries, then comforts, to which a house rather pertained, in a mild climate, permitting the use of tents.

28. Do not speak even truth needlessly against any, and never falsehood.

29. Especially avoid retaliation (Mt 5:43-45; Ro 12:17).

30, 31. A striking picture of the effects of sloth.

32-34. From the folly of the sluggard learn wisdom (Pr 6:10, 11).