1It is better to eat a dry crust of bread in peace
than to have a feast where there is quarreling.
2A wise servant will rule over his master’s disgraceful son.
And he will even inherit a share of what the master leaves his sons.
3A hot furnace tests silver and gold.
In the same way, the Lord tests a person’s heart.
4An evil person listens to evil words.
A liar pays attention to cruel words.
5If you make fun of the poor,
you insult God, who made them.
If you laugh at someone’s trouble,
you will be punished.
6Grandchildren are the reward of old people.
And children are proud of their parents.
7Foolish people should not be proud.
And rulers should not be liars!
8A person might think he can pay people and they will do anything he asks.
He thinks it will succeed every time.
9Whoever forgives someone’s sin makes a friend.
But the one who tells about the sin breaks up friendships.
10A wise man will learn more from a warning
than a foolish person will learn from 100 lashings.
11A disobedient person is only looking for trouble.
So a cruel messenger will be sent against him.
12It is better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs
than to meet a foolish person doing foolish things.
13If a person gives evil in return for good,
his house will always be full of trouble.
14Starting a quarrel is like a leak in a dam.
So stop the quarrel before a fight breaks out.
15The Lord hates both these things:
letting guilty people go free and punishing those who are not guilty.
16It won’t do a fool any good to try to buy wisdom.
He doesn’t really want to be wise.
17A friend loves you all the time.
A brother is always there to help you.
18It is not wise to promise
to pay what your neighbor owes.
19Whoever loves to quarrel loves to sin.
Whoever is proud is asking for trouble.
20A person with an evil heart will find no success.
And the person whose words are evil will get into trouble.
21It is sad to have a foolish son.
There is no joy in being the father of a fool.
22A happy heart is like good medicine.
But a broken spirit drains your strength.
23A wicked person secretly accepts money to do wrong.
Then there will be no fairness.
24The person with understanding looks for wisdom.
But a foolish person lets his mind wander everywhere.
25A foolish son makes his father sad.
And he causes his mother great sorrow.
26It is not good to punish those who have done what is right.
Nor is it good to punish leaders for being honest.
27The person who has knowledge says very little.
And a person with understanding stays calm.
28Even a foolish person seems to be wise if he keeps quiet.
He appears to have understanding if he doesn’t speak.