Proverbs Chapter 9 to 11 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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Wisdom and Stupidity

9 Wisdom built her house. She put the seven columns* in it. 2She (Wisdom) cooked meat and made wine. She put food on her table. 3And then she sent her servants to town to invite people to come up to the hill in the city {and eat with her}. She said, 4“Come, you people who need to learn.” She also invited foolish people. She said, 5“Come, eat the food of my wisdom. And drink the wine that I have made. 6Leave your old, foolish ways, and you will have life. Follow the way of understanding.” 7If you try to show a proud man that he is wrong, then he will only criticize you. {That man only makes fun of God’s wisdom.} If you tell an evil man that he is wrong, then he will make fun of you. 8So, if a man thinks that he is better than other people, don’t tell him that he is wrong. He will hate you for it. But if you try to help a wise man then he will respect you. 9If you teach a wise man, then he will become wiser. If you teach a good man, then he will learn more.  10Respect for the Lord is the first step toward getting wisdom. Getting knowledge of the Lord is the first step toward getting understanding. 11If you are wise, then your life will be longer. 12If you become wise, then you have become wise for your own good. But if you become proud and make fun of other people, then only you are to blame for your trouble. 13A foolish person is like a loud, evil woman. She does not have knowledge. 14She sits at the door of her house. She sits on her chair on the hill in the city. 15And when people walk by, she calls out to them. Those people are not interested in her, but she says, 16“Come you people who need to learn.” She also invited foolish people. 17But she (Foolishness) says, “If you steal water, it tastes better than your own. If you steal bread, it tastes better than the bread you cook yourself.” 18And those poor foolish people didn’t know that her house was filled only with ghosts. She (Foolishness) had invited them into the deepest parts of the place of death!

seven columns In ancient Israel, many houses had four main rooms with seven columns to support the roof. This shows Wisdom had a good house with a solid foundation.


Solomon’s Proverbs

10 These are the proverbs (wise sayings) of Solomon: A wise son makes his father happy. But a foolish son makes his mother very sad. 2If a person gets money by doing bad things, then that money is worthless. But doing good can save you from death. 3The Lord cares for good people. He gives them the food they need. But the Lord takes away the things that evil people want. 4A lazy person will be poor. But a person that works hard will be rich. 5A smart man gathers the crops at the right time. But if a person sleeps during the time of harvest and does not gather the crops, then he will be shamed. 6People ask God to bless a good person. Evil people might say those good things, but their words only hide the bad things they are planning.* 7Good people leave good memories. But evil people will soon be forgotten. 8A wise person obeys when someone tells him to do something. But a fool argues and brings trouble to himself. 9A good, honest person is safe. But a crooked person who cheats will be caught. 10A person who hides the truth causes trouble. A person who speaks openly makes peace.* 11A good man’s words make life better. But the words from an evil man only shows the bad that is inside him.* 12Hate causes arguments. But love forgives every wrong thing people do. 13Wise people say things that are worth hearing. But foolish people must be punished {before they learn their lesson}. 14Wise people {are quiet} and learn new things. But foolish people talk and bring trouble to themselves. 15Wealth protects the rich person. And poverty destroys a poor person. 16If a person does good, then he is rewarded. He is given life. Evil brings only punishment. 17A person who learns from his punishment can help other people live too. But a person who refuses to learn only leads people the wrong way. 18A person who hides his hate might be telling a lie. But only a fool tries to find gossip he can spread. 19A person who talks too much gets himself into trouble. A wise person learns to be quiet. 20The words from a good person are like pure silver. But the thoughts from an evil person are worthless. 21A good person’s words will help many people. But a fool’s stupidity will kill him. 22A blessing from the Lord will bring you true wealth. And it won’t bring troubles with it. 23The foolish person enjoys doing wrong. But a wise person is happy with wisdom. 24An evil person will be defeated by the things he fears. But a good person will get the things that he wants.  25Evil people are destroyed by their trouble. But good people will stand strong forever. 26Never let a lazy man do something for you. He will irritate you—like vinegar in your mouth or smoke in your eyes. 27If you respect the Lord, then you will live long. But evil people will lose years from their life. 28The things good people hope for bring happiness. The things bad people hope for bring ruin. 29The Lord protects good people. But the Lord destroys people that do wrong. 30Good people will always be safe. But evil people will be forced to leave the land. 31Good people say wise things. But people will stop listening to a person that says things that bring trouble. 32Good people know the right things to say. But evil people say things that bring trouble.

Evil people … planning Or, “But violence will cover the mouth of evil people.” A person … peace This is from the ancient Greek translation. The Hebrew repeats the second half of verse 8. But the words … inside him In Hebrew, this is like the second half of verse 6.


11 {Some people use scales that don’t weigh things properly. They use those scales to cheat people.} The Lord hates those false scales. But accurate scales please the Lord. 2People that are proud and boast will become unimportant. But people who are humble will also become wise. 3Good, honest people are guided by honesty. But evil people destroy themselves when they cheat other people. 4On the day God judges people, money is worth nothing. But goodness will save people from death. 5If a good person is honest, then his life will be easy. But an evil person is destroyed by the bad things he does. 6Goodness saves the honest person. But evil people are trapped by the bad things they want. 7After an evil man dies, there is no hope for him. Everything he hoped for is gone—all of it is worth nothing. 8A good person will escape trouble, and that trouble will happen to some evil person. 9An evil person can hurt other people by the things he says. But good people are protected by their wisdom. 10When good people are successful, all the city is happy. When evil people are destroyed, people shout with joy. 11A city becomes great when the honest people living there give it their blessing. But the things an evil person says can destroy a city. 12A person without good sense says bad things about his neighbors. But a wise man knows when to be quiet. 13Any person who tells secrets about other people can’t be trusted. But a person that can be trusted does not spread gossip. 14A nation with weak leaders will fall. But many good advisers will make that nation safe. 15If you promise to pay another person’s debt, then you will be sorry. You will be safe if you refuse to make those deals. 16A kind, gentle woman gains respect. Pushy men gain only money. 17A kind man will profit. But a mean man will cause trouble for himself. 18An evil man cheats people and takes their money. But a person that is fair and does right will get the real reward. 19Truly, goodness brings life. But evil people chase after evil and find death. 20The Lord hates people that love to do evil. But he is happy with people that try to do right. 21It is true that evil people will surely be punished. And good people will be made free. 22If a woman is beautiful but foolish, it is the same as a beautiful gold ring in a pig’s nose. 23When good people get what they want, it brings more good. But when evil people get what they want, it brings only trouble. 24If a person gives freely, then he will gain even more. But if a person refuses to give, then he will become poor. 25A person who gives freely will profit. If you help others, then you will gain more for yourself. 26People become angry at a greedy man who refuses to sell his grain. But they are happy with a man who sells his grain to feed other people. 27People respect a person who tries to do good. But a person who does evil gets nothing but trouble. 28The person who trusts in his riches will fall like a dead leaf. But the good person will grow like a new green leaf. 29If a person causes trouble for his family, then he will gain nothing. And in the end, the foolish person will be forced to serve the wise person. 30The things a good man does are like the Tree of Life.* A wise man gives new life to people.* 31If good people are rewarded on earth, then surely evil people will also get what they deserve.

Tree of Life See Gen. 2:9; 3:22–24; Rev. 22:1–2. A wise man gives new life to people Or, “A wise man takes souls.”

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