Proverbs 7:1–8:36

Warning Against the Adulterous Woman

7 My son,z keep my words

and store up my commands within you.

Keep my commands and you will live;a

guard my teachings as the apple of your eye.

Bind them on your fingers;

write them on the tablet of your heart.b

Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,”

and to insight, “You are my relative.”

They will keep you from the adulterous woman,

from the wayward woman with her seductive words.c

At the window of my house

I looked down through the lattice.

I saw among the simple,

I noticed among the young men,

a youth who had no sense.d

He was going down the street near her corner,

walking along in the direction of her house

at twilight,e as the day was fading,

as the dark of night set in.

10 Then out came a woman to meet him,

dressed like a prostitute and with crafty intent.

11 (She is unrulyf and defiant,

her feet never stay at home;

12 now in the street, now in the squares,

at every corner she lurks.)g

13 She took hold of himh and kissed him

and with a brazen face she said:i

14 “Today I fulfilled my vows,

and I have food from my fellowship offeringj at home.

15 So I came out to meet you;

I looked for you and have found you!

16 I have covered my bed

with colored linens from Egypt.

17 I have perfumed my bedk

with myrrh,l aloes and cinnamon.

18 Come, let’s drink deeply of love till morning;

let’s enjoy ourselves with love!m

19 My husband is not at home;

he has gone on a long journey.

20 He took his purse filled with money

and will not be home till full moon.”

21 With persuasive words she led him astray;

she seduced him with her smooth talk.n

22 All at once he followed her

like an ox going to the slaughter,

like a deera stepping into a nooseb o

23 till an arrow piercesp his liver,

like a bird darting into a snare,

little knowing it will cost him his life.q

24 Now then, my sons, listenr to me;

pay attention to what I say.

25 Do not let your heart turn to her ways

or stray into her paths.s

26 Many are the victims she has brought down;

her slain are a mighty throng.

27 Her house is a highway to the grave,

leading down to the chambers of death.t

Wisdom’s Call

8 Does not wisdom call out?u

Does not understanding raise her voice?

At the highest point along the way,

where the paths meet, she takes her stand;

beside the gate leading into the city,

at the entrance, she cries aloud:v

“To you, O people, I call out;w

I raise my voice to all mankind.

You who are simple,x gain prudence;y

you who are foolish, set your hearts on it.a

Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say;

I open my lips to speak what is right.

My mouth speaks what is true,z

for my lips detest wickedness.

All the words of my mouth are just;

none of them is crooked or perverse.

To the discerning all of them are right;

they are upright to those who have found knowledge.

10 Choose my instruction instead of silver,

knowledge rather than choice gold,a

11 for wisdom is more preciousb than rubies,

and nothing you desire can compare with her.c

12 “I, wisdom, dwell together with prudence;

I possess knowledge and discretion.d

13 To fear the Lorde is to hate evil;f

I hateg pride and arrogance,

evil behavior and perverse speech.

14 Counsel and sound judgment are mine;

I have insight, I have power.h

15 By me kings reign

and rulersi issue decrees that are just;

16 by me princes govern,j

and nobles—all who rule on earth.b

17 I love those who love me,k

and those who seek me find me.l

18 With me are riches and honor,m

enduring wealth and prosperity.n

19 My fruit is better than fine gold;o

what I yield surpasses choice silver.p

20 I walk in the way of righteousness,q

along the paths of justice,

21 bestowing a rich inheritance on those who love me

and making their treasuries full.r

22 “The Lord brought me forth as the first of his works,c,d

before his deeds of old;

23 I was formed long ages ago,

at the very beginning, when the world came to be.

24 When there were no watery depths, I was given birth,

when there were no springs overflowing with water;s

25 before the mountains were settled in place,t

before the hills, I was given birth,u

26 before he made the world or its fields

or any of the dust of the earth.v

27 I was there when he set the heavens in place,w

when he marked out the horizonx on the face of the deep,

28 when he established the clouds abovey

and fixed securely the fountains of the deep,z

29 when he gave the sea its boundarya

so the waters would not overstep his command,b

and when he marked out the foundations of the earth.c

30 Then I was constantlye at his side.d

I was filled with delight day after day,

rejoicing always in his presence,

31 rejoicing in his whole world

and delighting in mankind.e

32 “Now then, my children, listenf to me;

blessed areg those who keep my ways.h

33 Listen to my instruction and be wise;

do not disregard it.

34 Blessed are those who listeni to me,

watching daily at my doors,

waiting at my doorway.

35 For those who find mej find lifek

and receive favor from the Lord.l

36 But those who fail to find me harm themselves;m

all who hate me love death.”n

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