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1My son, if you have put up security for your friend,
if you committed yourself on behalf of another;
2you have been snared by the words of your mouth,
caught by the words of your own mouth.
3Do this now, my son, and extricate yourself,
since you put yourself in your friend’s power:
go, humble yourself, and pester your friend;
4give your eyes no sleep,
give your eyelids no rest;
5break free, like a gazelle from the [hunter’s] trap,
like a bird from the grip of the fowler.
6Go to the ant, you lazybones!
Consider its ways, and be wise.
7It has no chief, overseer or ruler;
8yet it provides its food in summer
and gathers its supplies at harvest-time.
9Lazybones! How long will you lie there in bed?
When will you get up from your sleep?
10“I’ll just lie here a bit, rest a little longer,
just fold my hands for a little more sleep” —
11and poverty comes marching in on you,
scarcity hits you like an invading soldier.
12A scoundrel, a vicious man,
lives by crooked speech,
13winking his eyes, shuffling his feet,
pointing with his fingers.
14With deceit in his heart,
he is always plotting evil and sowing discord.
15Therefore disaster suddenly overcomes him;
unexpectedly, he is broken beyond repair.
16There are six things Adonai hates,
seven which he detests:
17a haughty look, a lying tongue,
hands that shed innocent blood,
18a heart that plots wicked schemes,
feet swift in running to do evil,
19a false witness who lies with every breath,
and him who sows strife among brothers.
20My son, obey your father’s command,
and don’t abandon your mother’s teaching.
21Bind them always on your heart,
tie them around your neck.
22When you walk, they will lead you;
when you lie down, they will watch over you;
and when you wake up, they will talk with you.
23For the mitzvah is a lamp, Torah is light,
and reproofs that discipline are the way to life.
24They keep you from an evil woman,
from a loose woman’s seductive tongue.
25Don’t let your heart lust after her beauty
or allow her glance to captivate you.
26The price of a whore is a loaf of bread,
but the adulteress is hunting for a precious life.
27Can a man carry fire inside his shirt
without burning his clothes?
28Can a man walk [barefoot] on hot coals
without scorching his feet?
29So is he who has sex with his neighbor’s wife;
anyone touching her will be punished.
30A thief is not despised if he steals
only to satisfy his appetite when hungry;
31but even he, if caught, must pay back sevenfold;
he may have to give up all the wealth that he owns.
32He who commits adultery lacks sense;
he who does it destroys himself.
33He will get nothing but blows and contempt,
and his disgrace will not be wiped away.
34For jealousy drives a man into a rage;
he will show no mercy when he takes revenge;
35he will not accept compensation;
he’ll refuse every bribe, no matter how large.