The Glory of Searching a Matter
1These also are proverbs of Solomon, which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied:
2It is the glory of God to conceal a matter and the glory of kings to search it out.
3As high as heaven and deep as earth, so the hearts of kings are unsearchable.
4Remove impurities from silver and out comes material for the refiner.
5Remove the wicked from before the king, and his throne will be established in righteousness.
6Do not honor yourself in the king’s presence, and do not stand in the place of great men.
7Better for him to say to you, “Come up here,” than for you to be humiliated before a nobleman. What your eyes have seen,
8do not bring hastily to court, or what will you do afterward, when your neighbor puts you to shame?
9Argue your case with your associate, without betraying another’s confidence,
10or the one who hears it will shame you, and you will never lose your bad reputation.
A Fitting Reproof is Precious
11Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a word aptly spoken.
12Like a gold earring or a gold ornament is a wise reproof to a receptive ear.
13Like the coolness of snow at harvest time is a faithful messenger to those who send him for he refreshes his master’s soul.
14Like clouds and wind without rain is one who boasts about a gift not given.
15Through patience a ruler may be persuaded, and a soft tongue can break a bone.
Proverbs for Daily Life
16When you find honey, eat just enough, lest you are stuffed and vomit it.
17Seldom set foot in your neighbor’s house, lest he become weary of you and loathe you.
18Like a club, a sword, or a sharp arrow is one who bears false witness against his neighbor.
19Like a broken tooth or a lame foot is confidence in the unfaithful in time of trouble.
20Like taking off a garment on a cold day or like vinegar poured on soda, is one who sings songs to a heavy heart.
21If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat, and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink,
22for you will heap coals of fire on his head and Adonai will reward you.
23A north wind brings rain, and a backbiting tongue angry faces.
24Better to dwell in a corner of a roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.
25Like cold water to a weary soul is good news from a distant land.
26Like a muddied spring or a polluted well is a righteous person who yields before the wicked.
27It is not good to eat too much honey, or honorable to seek one’s own honor.
28Like a city whose walls are broken down is one with no control over his temper.