The Old Sayings (Proverbs) 27-31

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     27[1-2] Don’t brag about tomorrow; because you never know what a day may bring. Let someone else praise you and not your own mouth; allow a stranger to praise you and not your own words.

     [3-5] A stupid person’s anger is heavier than stone or wet sand. Rage is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but no one is able to stand before jealousy! Open rejection is better than secret love.

     [6-8] The wounds of a friend are faithful; but an enemy’s kiss is full of lies. A person who is full can’t bear sweets; but anything is sweet to a hungry person. It’s as dangerous for those that run away from home as it is for birds that stray from their nest.

     [9-10] As fragrant oils and perfume make the heart joyful, so the cheerful counsel of a person’s friend is sweet. Don’t abandon your own friend or your parent’s friend, nor go into your family’s home in the day of your misfortune: for a close neighbor is better than a distant family member.

     [11-12] Children, be wise, and make me happy, so that I can reply to everybody that criticizes me. If you are sensible people, you’ll foresee trouble and get out of the way; but if you are naïve, you will keep on going, and get only what you deserve.

     [13-16] Take the shirt off the back of those that bail out untrustworthy people, and hold it for security from those that guarantee the debts of the ungodly. Those that loudly applaud their friends early in the morning will be cursed by them. A divisive person is very much like the constant dripping of a very rainy day: It’s as useless to try to stop them as to try to stop the wind from blowing, or to catch oil in your hand.

     [17-19] As metal sharpens metal; so are those that sharpen the attitudes of their friends. Whoever keeps the fig tree will eat its fruit: so those that work well for the owner of a company will be honored. As a face’s reflection in the water, so the heart reflects the person.

     [20-22] The eyes of a person are never satisfied, just like Hell and destruction are never full. As silver and gold are refined; so people will shine by the praise they receive. Though you whip a stupid person mercilessly, you can’t beat their stupidity out of them.

     [23-27] Be careful to know the state of your property, and look well to your assets, because riches aren’t forever and don’t endure to every generation. But as sure as spring and summer bring in the harvest, if you budget a small amount for your clothing and a larger sum for your property, you’ll have money enough for your food and for the upkeep of your family.

     28[1-3] Immoral people are anxious and run when no one is chasing them, but godly people are as bold as lions. Too many rulers make a nation rebel, but those of understanding and knowledge save it. A poor person that oppresses the poor is like a pouring rain which destroys food crops.

     [4-8] Those that give up on the Word of Yahweh approve the sinful, but those that keep the Word of God challenge them about their wrongs. Evil people have no judgment, but people who seek Yahweh understand everything. Good poor people are better than evil rich people. Those who keep the word of God are wise children, but those that are friends of riotous people shame their parents. Those that get richer by lending for interest and gaining unearned income will collect it only for others who will sympathize with the poor.

     [9-12] Even the prayers of those that don’t listen to the Word of God are an insult to the Almighty. Whoever causes godly people to go astray in an evil way, will fall into their own trap, but godly people will find good things. Rich people think they know it all; but poor people who are intelligent thoroughly question them. When godly people rejoice, there’s a great celebration, but when the sinful secretly rise to power, the people quietly disappear.

     [13] Those that hide their sins won’t prosper, but whoever confesses and turns from them will have mercy. Those that always respect Yahweh are happy, but those that ignore the Word of God will get into trouble.

     [15-16] As a roaring lion, and a raging bear; so are sinful rulers over poor people. The ruler that oppresses the people lacks understanding, but those that aren’t greedy will prolong their days.

     [17-18] People that violently murder any person will run from judgment till the day they die; so let no one help them. Whoever behaves well will be saved, but those who act in hateful ways will fall quickly.

     [19-22] Those that work hard will have plenty of food, but those that follow after worthless people will have poverty enough. Faithful people will thrive with blessings, but those that want to get rich quickly aren’t innocent. The favoritism of people is not good: for a small favor those people will go bad. Those who want to get rich quickly have eyes full of evil, and never consider that poverty will come on them.

     [23-28] Those that correct a person after a wrong will find more favor than those that flatter them. Whoever says it’s no sin to steal from their parents are friends of destruction. Those that have an arrogant heart stir up conflict, but those that put their trust in Yahweh will be richly rewarded. Those that trust in their own hearts are stupid, but whoever walks wisely will be saved. Those that give to the poor won’t lack, but those that ignore them will have much trouble. When the sinful rise to power, people go into hiding, but when they die, godly people step up.

     29[1-2] Stubborn people, who have been corrected often, will be unexpectedly destroyed having no escape. When godly people are in power, the people celebrate, but when the sinful rule, the people mourn.

     [3-5] Whoever loves wisdom causes their parents to celebrate, but those that keep company with loose people waste their living. By good judgment rulers establish the land, but those that take bribes make it fall. People that flatter their neighbor set a trap for them.

     [6-10] Evil persons will be trapped by their own sin, but godly people will sing and celebrate. Godly people consider the case of the poor, but the sinful don’t even want to know about it. Rebellious people disturb a city, but wise people calm their own anger. If a wise person argues with a stupid person there’s no peace, whether they rage or laugh. Cruel people hate the good, but fair people seek out the good.

     [11-14] Stupid people speak their mind before hearing the whole story, but wise people listen and think before answering. If a ruler listens to lies, their staff members will be sinful as well. Yahweh gives light to the eyes of both the poor and those who lie. The reign of rulers that faithfully judge the poor will be established forever.

     [15-17] A switch and correction give good judgment, but undisciplined children bring shame on their parents. When the sinful increase, sin multiplies, but godly people will live to see their downfall. Correct your children and they’ll let you rest; yes, they’ll give joy to your soul.

     [18] Where there’s no hope for the future, people will waste away and die, but those that keep their eyes on the Word of God are happy. An employee won’t be corrected by words only, because they refuse to change their ways even when they understand. There’s more hope of a stupid person than of those that speak rashly. Those that carefully bring up their trainee as a young person will treat them like family in the end.

     [22] An angry person stirs up trouble, and a furious person thrives on sin. People’s pride will bring them low, but honor will uphold the depressed in spirit. Whoever is an accessory to the crimes of a thief is their own worst enemy; and when they hear lying, they don’t expose it for what it is. A person’s fear controls them, but whoever puts their trust in Yahweh will be safe. Many seek the ruler’s grace; but every person’s judgment comes from Yahweh. Sinful people are an insult to fair-minded people, and those who live in a righteous way are an offense to the sinful.

     30[1-3] The words of Agur the son of Jakeh, the preaching that the people spoke to Ithiel and Ucal: Surely I am more wild than anyone, and haven’t the brain of a human being. I have no wisdom, nor do I have the knowledge of the holy.

     [4] Who has gone up into heaven, or come down from it? Who has caught up the wind in their hands? Who has bound the waters in their clothes? Who has established all the boundaries of the earth? What’s God’s Name, and what’s the Firstborn’s Name, if you can tell?

     [5-6] All the words of God are pure: You defend those that put their trust in You. Don’t change the meaning of the Words of God, or you may be corrected and found to be a liar.

     [7-9] Don’t deny me these two things that I ask of You before I die: Take away from me arrogance and lies, and don’t give me poverty or riches, but provide my food daily, because if I am too full, I might deny You, and say, Who is Yahweh? But if I am poor, I might steal, and misuse the Name of my God.

     [10] Don’t accuse an employee to their employer, or they’ll curse you, and you may be found the guilty one.

     [11-14] This generation curses their parents, and doesn’t bless them. This generation is guiltless in their own eyes and yet isn’t washed from the filthiness of their sins. This generation is so self-important they think they can do anything! This generation consumes the poor from the earth, and the needy from among the people.

     [15-16] The bloodsucker has two children, always crying, “Give, give.” Three things are never satisfied, yes, four things will not be uncorrupted: The grave; and the barren womb; the thirsty earth; and an unquenchable fire.

     [17] The one that disrespects a parent, and hates to obey them, will run away and die in a rough country and the birds will eat their body.

     [18-19] There are three things which are too wonderful for me, yes, four which I can’t even comprehend: The way an eagle soars through the air; the way a serpent slithers on a rock; the way a ship stays afloat in the midst of the sea; and the way a man loves a woman.

     [20] The way of adulterous people is to eat and wipe their mouths, saying, We’ve done no evil.

     [21-23] The earth is disturbed by three things, four things it cannot bear: For an employee to be in control, for stupid persons to be full of food, for married people to be unlovable, and for employees that are due to inherit their employer’s business.

     [24-28] There are four things which are small on the earth, but are very wise: The ants, which aren’t a strong species, yet prepare their provisions in the summer; The mountain badgers that are quite feeble, yet make their homes in the cracks between rocks; The locusts, which have no ruler, yet all fly in swarms; And the spider that makes a web even in the mansions of great people.

     [29-31] There are three things that walk grandly, yes, four look splendid as they go about: A lion, which is strongest among wild animals, and doesn’t back off for anything; A greyhound; a ram also; and a ruler, who no one dares to rebel against.

     [32-33] If you’ve stupidly lifted yourself up in pride, or if you’ve thought evil things, put your hand on your mouth, for just as churning milk makes butter, and a broken nose bleeds: so stirring up anger only brings trouble on yourself.

     31[1-9] These are the words of the ruler Lemuel, the preaching that his mother taught him. Oh, Child! Child of my womb! The child of my vows! Don’t waste your strength on many lovers, nor give your ways to those things that destroy rulers. Child; it isn’t for rulers to drink wine; nor for their descendents to drink strong alcohol, or they might drink it, and forget the law, and their judgments misrepresent the distressed. Only give strong drinks to those that are about to die, and wine to those that have heavy hearts. Let them drink, and forget their poverty, not remembering their misery. Stand up for those that cannot stand up for themselves, in the case of all those who are about to die. Speak for them and judge fairly the cases of the poor and needy.

    [10-20] Who can find a worthy person, who is more valuable than riches? Their spouse’s heart safely trusts in them, having no need to worry. They’ll treat them well and not dreadfully every day of their life. They seek material goods and work willingly with their hands. They’re like a buyer who gets food from far away places. They rise while it’s still dark, and give it to their households and some to their employees as well. Considering a piece of property, they buy it and tend it with the work of their hands. They keep fit, strengthening their arms. They know what they produce is good, and they hardly even turn out the lights at night. They work with their hands, skillfully using their equipment. They give to the poor and reach out to the needy.

     [21-31] They aren’t afraid of the cold for their household: for they are all well clothed, having fine coats and quality clothing. Their spouses are well known when they sit among the leaders of the city. They supply fine merchandise, and bring it to the buyers to sell. They are strong and honorable; and will celebrate in the days ahead. They speak with wisdom and words of kindness. They look after their household well, and are never lazy. Their children will rise up and call them blessed; and their spouses will also praise them. Many people have done virtuously, but these outshine them all. Favoritism is false, and attractiveness has no real value, but those who respect Yahweh will be praised. Give them the rewards of their hard work; and let their own acts be publicly honored. 

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