1These also are proverbs of Solomon, which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied out.
2It is the glory of God to conceal a thing,
but the glory of kings is to search out a matter.
3As the heavens for height, and the earth for depth,
so the hearts of kings are unsearchable.
4Take away the dross from the silver,
and material comes out for the refiner;
5Take away the wicked from the king’s presence,
and his throne will be established in righteousness.
6Don’t exalt yourself in the presence of the king,
or claim a place amongst great men;
7for it is better that it be said to you, “Come up here,”
than that you should be put lower in the presence of the prince,
whom your eyes have seen.
8Don’t be hasty in bringing charges to court.
What will you do in the end when your neighbour shames you?
9Debate your case with your neighbour,
and don’t betray the confidence of another,
10lest one who hears it put you to shame,
and your bad reputation never depart.
11A word fitly spoken
is like apples of gold in settings of silver.
12As an earring of gold, and an ornament of fine gold,
so is a wise reprover to an obedient ear.
13As the cold of snow in the time of harvest,
so is a faithful messenger to those who send him;
for he refreshes the soul of his masters.
14As clouds and wind without rain,
so is he who boasts of gifts deceptively.
15By patience a ruler is persuaded.
A soft tongue breaks the bone.
16Have you found honey?
Eat as much as is sufficient for you,
lest you eat too much, and vomit it.
17Let your foot be seldom in your neighbour’s house,
lest he be weary of you, and hate you.
18A man who gives false testimony against his neighbour
is like a club, a sword, or a sharp arrow.
19Confidence in someone unfaithful in time of trouble
is like a bad tooth or a lame foot.
20As one who takes away a garment in cold weather,
or vinegar on soda,
so is one who sings songs to a heavy heart.
21If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat.
If he is thirsty, give him water to drink;
22for you will heap coals of fire on his head,
and the Lord will reward you.
23The north wind produces rain;
so a backbiting tongue brings an angry face.
24It is better to dwell in the corner of the housetop
than to share a house with a contentious woman.
25Like cold water to a thirsty soul,
so is good news from a far country.
26Like a muddied spring and a polluted well,
so is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.
27It is not good to eat much honey,
nor is it honourable to seek one’s own honour.
28Like a city that is broken down and without walls
is a man whose spirit is without restraint.