Proverbs 24:1-34

Proverbs 24:1-2-30-34 The Message (MSG)

Don’t envy bad people; don’t even want to be around them. All they think about is causing a disturbance; all they talk about is making trouble. It takes wisdom to build a house, and understanding to set it on a firm foundation; It takes knowledge to furnish its rooms with fine furniture and beautiful draperies. It’s better to be wise than strong; intelligence outranks muscle any day. Strategic planning is the key to warfare; to win, you need a lot of good counsel. Wise conversation is way over the head of fools; in a serious discussion they haven’t a clue. The person who’s always cooking up some evil soon gets a reputation as prince of rogues. Fools incubate sin; cynics desecrate beauty. If you fall to pieces in a crisis, there wasn’t much to you in the first place. Rescue the perishing; don’t hesitate to step in and help. If you say, “Hey, that’s none of my business,” will that get you off the hook? Someone is watching you closely, you know— Someone not impressed with weak excuses. Eat honey, dear child—it’s good for you— and delicacies that melt in your mouth. Likewise knowledge, and wisdom for your soul— Get that and your future’s secured, your hope is on solid rock. Don’t interfere with good people’s lives; don’t try to get the best of them. No matter how many times you trip them up, God-loyal people don’t stay down long; Soon they’re up on their feet, while the wicked end up flat on their faces. Don’t laugh when your enemy falls; don’t gloat over his collapse. GOD might see, and become very provoked, and then take pity on his plight. Don’t bother your head with braggarts or wish you could succeed like the wicked. Those people have no future at all; they’re headed down a dead-end street. Fear GOD, dear child—respect your leaders; don’t be defiant or mutinous. Without warning your life can turn upside down, and who knows how or when it might happen? It’s wrong, very wrong, to go along with injustice. Whoever whitewashes the wicked gets a black mark in the history books, But whoever exposes the wicked will be thanked and rewarded. An honest answer is like a warm hug. First plant your fields; then build your barn. Don’t talk about your neighbors behind their backs— no slander or gossip, please. Don’t say to anyone, “I’ll get back at you for what you did to me. I’ll make you pay for what you did!” One day I walked by the field of an old lazybones, and then passed the vineyard of a slob; They were overgrown with weeds, thick with thistles, all the fences broken down. I took a long look and pondered what I saw; the fields preached me a sermon and I listened: “A nap here, a nap there, a day off here, a day off there, sit back, take it easy—do you know what comes next? Just this: You can look forward to a dirt-poor life, with poverty as your permanent houseguest!”

Proverbs 24:1-34 New American Standard Bible - NASB 1995 (NASB1995)

Do not be envious of evil men, Nor desire to be with them; For their minds devise violence, And their lips talk of trouble. By wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established; And by knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches. A wise man is strong, And a man of knowledge increases power. For by wise guidance you will wage war, And in abundance of counselors there is victory. Wisdom is too exalted for a fool, He does not open his mouth in the gate. One who plans to do evil, Men will call a schemer. The devising of folly is sin, And the scoffer is an abomination to men. If you are slack in the day of distress, Your strength is limited. Deliver those who are being taken away to death, And those who are staggering to slaughter, Oh hold them back. If you say, “See, we did not know this,” Does He not consider it who weighs the hearts? And does He not know it who keeps your soul? And will He not render to man according to his work? My son, eat honey, for it is good, Yes, the honey from the comb is sweet to your taste; Know that wisdom is thus for your soul; If you find it, then there will be a future, And your hope will not be cut off. Do not lie in wait, O wicked man, against the dwelling of the righteous; Do not destroy his resting place; For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again, But the wicked stumble in time of calamity. Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles; Or the LORD will see it and be displeased, And turn His anger away from him. Do not fret because of evildoers Or be envious of the wicked; For there will be no future for the evil man; The lamp of the wicked will be put out. My son, fear the LORD and the king; Do not associate with those who are given to change, For their calamity will rise suddenly, And who knows the ruin that comes from both of them? These also are sayings of the wise. To show partiality in judgment is not good. He who says to the wicked, “You are righteous,” Peoples will curse him, nations will abhor him; But to those who rebuke the wicked will be delight, And a good blessing will come upon them. He kisses the lips Who gives a right answer. Prepare your work outside And make it ready for yourself in the field; Afterwards, then, build your house. Do not be a witness against your neighbor without cause, And do not deceive with your lips. Do not say, “Thus I shall do to him as he has done to me; I will render to the man according to his work.” I passed by the field of the sluggard And by the vineyard of the man lacking sense, And behold, it was completely overgrown with thistles; Its surface was covered with nettles, And its stone wall was broken down. When I saw, I reflected upon it; I looked, and received instruction. “A little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to rest,” Then your poverty will come as a robber And your want like an armed man.

Proverbs 24:1-34 New Living Translation (NLT)

Don’t envy evil people or desire their company. For their hearts plot violence, and their words always stir up trouble. A house is built by wisdom and becomes strong through good sense. Through knowledge its rooms are filled with all sorts of precious riches and valuables. The wise are mightier than the strong, and those with knowledge grow stronger and stronger. So don’t go to war without wise guidance; victory depends on having many advisers. Wisdom is too lofty for fools. Among leaders at the city gate, they have nothing to say. A person who plans evil will get a reputation as a troublemaker. The schemes of a fool are sinful; everyone detests a mocker. If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small. Rescue those who are unjustly sentenced to die; save them as they stagger to their death. Don’t excuse yourself by saying, “Look, we didn’t know.” For God understands all hearts, and he sees you. He who guards your soul knows you knew. He will repay all people as their actions deserve. My child, eat honey, for it is good, and the honeycomb is sweet to the taste. In the same way, wisdom is sweet to your soul. If you find it, you will have a bright future, and your hopes will not be cut short. Don’t wait in ambush at the home of the godly, and don’t raid the house where the godly live. The godly may trip seven times, but they will get up again. But one disaster is enough to overthrow the wicked. Don’t rejoice when your enemies fall; don’t be happy when they stumble. For the LORD will be displeased with you and will turn his anger away from them. Don’t fret because of evildoers; don’t envy the wicked. For evil people have no future; the light of the wicked will be snuffed out. My child, fear the LORD and the king. Don’t associate with rebels, for disaster will hit them suddenly. Who knows what punishment will come from the LORD and the king? Here are some further sayings of the wise: It is wrong to show favoritism when passing judgment. A judge who says to the wicked, “You are innocent,” will be cursed by many people and denounced by the nations. But it will go well for those who convict the guilty; rich blessings will be showered on them. An honest answer is like a kiss of friendship. Do your planning and prepare your fields before building your house. Don’t testify against your neighbors without cause; don’t lie about them. And don’t say, “Now I can pay them back for what they’ve done to me! I’ll get even with them!” I walked by the field of a lazy person, the vineyard of one with no common sense. I saw that it was overgrown with nettles. It was covered with weeds, and its walls were broken down. Then, as I looked and thought about it, I learned this lesson: A little extra sleep, a little more slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest— then poverty will pounce on you like a bandit; scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.

Proverbs 24:1-34 King James Version (KJV)

Be not thou envious against evil men, Neither desire to be with them. For their heart studieth destruction, And their lips talk of mischief. Through wisdom is an house builded; And by understanding it is established: And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled With all precious and pleasant riches. A wise man is strong; Yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength. For by wise counsel thou shalt make thy war: And in multitude of counsellors there is safety. Wisdom is too high for a fool: He openeth not his mouth in the gate. He that deviseth to do evil Shall be called a mischievous person. The thought of foolishness is sin: And the scorner is an abomination to men. If thou faint in the day of adversity, Thy strength is small. If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn unto death, And those that are ready to be slain; If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; Doth not he that pondereth the heart consider it? And he that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? And shall not he render to every man according to his works? My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; And the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste: So shall the knowledge of wisdom be unto thy soul: When thou hast found it, then there shall be a reward, And thy expectation shall not be cut off. Lay not wait, O wicked man, against the dwelling of the righteous; Spoil not his resting place: For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: But the wicked shall fall into mischief. Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, And let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth: Lest the LORD see it, and it displease him, And he turn away his wrath from him. Fret not thyself because of evil men, Neither be thou envious at the wicked; For there shall be no reward to the evil man; The candle of the wicked shall be put out. My son, fear thou the LORD and the king: And meddle not with them that are given to change: For their calamity shall rise suddenly; And who knoweth the ruin of them both? These things also belong to the wise. It is not good to have respect of persons in judgment. He that saith unto the wicked, Thou art righteous; Him shall the people curse, nations shall abhor him: But to them that rebuke him shall be delight, And a good blessing shall come upon them. Every man shall kiss his lips That giveth a right answer. Prepare thy work without, And make it fit for thyself in the field; And afterwards build thine house. Be not a witness against thy neighbour without cause; And deceive not with thy lips. Say not, I will do so to him as he hath done to me: I will render to the man according to his work. I went by the field of the slothful, And by the vineyard of the man void of understanding; And, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, And nettles had covered the face thereof, And the stone wall thereof was broken down. Then I saw, and considered it well: I looked upon it, and received instruction. Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth; And thy want as an armed man.

Proverbs 24:1-34 New Century Version (NCV)

Don’t envy evil people or try to be friends with them. Their minds are always planning violence, and they always talk about making trouble. It takes wisdom to have a good family, and it takes understanding to make it strong. It takes knowledge to fill a home with rare and beautiful treasures. Wise people have great power, and those with knowledge have great strength. So you need advice when you go to war. If you have lots of good advice, you will win. Foolish people cannot understand wisdom. They have nothing to say in a discussion. Whoever makes evil plans will be known as a troublemaker. Making foolish plans is sinful, and making fun of wisdom is hateful. If you give up when trouble comes, it shows that you are weak. Save those who are being led to their death; rescue those who are about to be killed. If you say, “We don’t know anything about this,” God, who knows what’s in your mind, will notice. He is watching you, and he will know. He will reward each person for what he has done. My child, eat honey because it is good. Honey from the honeycomb tastes sweet. In the same way, wisdom is pleasing to you. If you find it, you have hope for the future, and your wishes will come true. Don’t be wicked and attack a good family’s house; don’t rob the place where they live. Even though good people may be bothered by trouble seven times, they are never defeated, but the wicked are overwhelmed by trouble. Don’t be happy when your enemy is defeated; don’t be glad when he is overwhelmed. The LORD will notice and be displeased. He may not be angry with them anymore. Don’t envy evil people, and don’t be jealous of the wicked. An evil person has nothing to hope for; the wicked will die like a flame that is put out. My child, respect the LORD and the king. Don’t join those people who refuse to obey them. The LORD and the king will quickly destroy such people. Those two can cause great disaster! These are also sayings of the wise: It is not good to take sides when you are the judge. Don’t tell the wicked that they are innocent; people will curse you, and nations will hate you. But things will go well if you punish the guilty, and you will receive rich blessings. An honest answer is as pleasing as a kiss on the lips. First, finish your outside work and prepare your fields. After that, you can build your house. Don’t testify against your neighbor for no good reason. Don’t say things that are false. Don’t say, “I’ll get even; I’ll do to him what he did to me.” I passed by a lazy person’s field and by the vineyard of someone with no sense. Thorns had grown up everywhere. The ground was covered with weeds, and the stone walls had fallen down. I thought about what I had seen; I learned this lesson from what I saw. You sleep a little; you take a nap. You fold your hands and lie down to rest. Soon you will be as poor as if you had been robbed; you will have as little as if you had been held up.

Proverbs 24:1-34 American Standard Version (ASV)

Be not thou envious against evil men; Neither desire to be with them: For their heart studieth oppression, And their lips talk of mischief. Through wisdom is a house builded; And by understanding it is established; And by knowledge are the chambers filled With all precious and pleasant riches. A wise man is strong; Yea, a man of knowledge increaseth might. For by wise guidance thou shalt make thy war; And in the multitude of counsellors there is safety. Wisdom is too high for a fool: He openeth not his mouth in the gate. He that deviseth to do evil, Men shall call him a mischief-maker. The thought of foolishness is sin; And the scoffer is an abomination to men. If thou faint in the day of adversity, Thy strength is small. Deliver them that are carried away unto death, And those that are ready to be slain see that thou hold back. If thou sayest, Behold, we knew not this; Doth not he that weigheth the hearts consider it? And he that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? And shall not he render to every man according to his work? My son, eat thou honey, for it is good; And the droppings of the honeycomb, which are sweet to thy taste: So shalt thou know wisdom to be unto thy soul; If thou hast found it, then shall there be a reward, And thy hope shall not be cut off. Lay not wait, O wicked man, against the habitation of the righteous; Destroy not his resting-place: For a righteous man falleth seven times, and riseth up again; But the wicked are overthrown by calamity. Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, And let not thy heart be glad when he is overthrown; Lest Jehovah see it, and it displease him, And he turn away his wrath from him. Fret not thyself because of evil-doers; Neither be thou envious at the wicked: For there shall be no reward to the evil man; The lamp of the wicked shall be put out. My son, fear thou Jehovah and the king; And company not with them that are given to change: For their calamity shall rise suddenly; And the destruction from them both, who knoweth it? These also are sayings of the wise. To have respect of persons in judgment is not good. He that saith unto the wicked, Thou art righteous, Peoples shall curse him, nations shall abhor him; But to them that rebuke him shall be delight, And a good blessing shall come upon them. He kisseth the lips Who giveth a right answer. Prepare thy work without, And make it ready for thee in the field; And afterwards build thy house. Be not a witness against thy neighbor without cause; And deceive not with thy lips. Say not, I will do so to him as he hath done to me; I will render to the man according to his work. I went by the field of the sluggard, And by the vineyard of the man void of understanding; And, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, The face thereof was covered with nettles, And the stone wall thereof was broken down. Then I beheld, and considered well; I saw, and received instruction: Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to sleep; So shall thy poverty come as a robber, And thy want as an armed man.

Proverbs 24:1-34 New International Version (NIV)

Do not envy the wicked, do not desire their company; for their hearts plot violence, and their lips talk about making trouble. By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures. The wise prevail through great power, and those who have knowledge muster their strength. Surely you need guidance to wage war, and victory is won through many advisers. Wisdom is too high for fools; in the assembly at the gate they must not open their mouths. Whoever plots evil will be known as a schemer. The schemes of folly are sin, and people detest a mocker. If you falter in a time of trouble, how small is your strength! Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done? Eat honey, my son, for it is good; honey from the comb is sweet to your taste. Know also that wisdom is like honey for you: If you find it, there is a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off. Do not lurk like a thief near the house of the righteous, do not plunder their dwelling place; for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again, but the wicked stumble when calamity strikes. Do not gloat when your enemy falls; when they stumble, do not let your heart rejoice, or the LORD will see and disapprove and turn his wrath away from them. Do not fret because of evildoers or be envious of the wicked, for the evildoer has no future hope, and the lamp of the wicked will be snuffed out. Fear the LORD and the king, my son, and do not join with rebellious officials, for those two will send sudden destruction on them, and who knows what calamities they can bring? These also are sayings of the wise: To show partiality in judging is not good: Whoever says to the guilty, “You are innocent,” will be cursed by peoples and denounced by nations. But it will go well with those who convict the guilty, and rich blessing will come on them. An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips. Put your outdoor work in order and get your fields ready; after that, build your house. Do not testify against your neighbor without cause— would you use your lips to mislead? Do not say, “I’ll do to them as they have done to me; I’ll pay them back for what they did.” I went past the field of a sluggard, past the vineyard of someone who has no sense; thorns had come up everywhere, the ground was covered with weeds, and the stone wall was in ruins. I applied my heart to what I observed and learned a lesson from what I saw: A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest— and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man.

Proverbs 24:1-34 New King James Version (NKJV)

Do not be envious of evil men, Nor desire to be with them; For their heart devises violence, And their lips talk of troublemaking. Through wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established; By knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches. A wise man is strong, Yes, a man of knowledge increases strength; For by wise counsel you will wage your own war, And in a multitude of counselors there is safety. Wisdom is too lofty for a fool; He does not open his mouth in the gate. He who plots to do evil Will be called a schemer. The devising of foolishness is sin, And the scoffer is an abomination to men. If you faint in the day of adversity, Your strength is small. Deliver those who are drawn toward death, And hold back those stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, “Surely we did not know this,” Does not He who weighs the hearts consider it? He who keeps your soul, does He not know it? And will He not render to each man according to his deeds? My son, eat honey because it is good, And the honeycomb which is sweet to your taste; So shall the knowledge of wisdom be to your soul; If you have found it, there is a prospect, And your hope will not be cut off. Do not lie in wait, O wicked man, against the dwelling of the righteous; Do not plunder his resting place; For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again, But the wicked shall fall by calamity. Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles; Lest the LORD see it, and it displease Him, And He turn away His wrath from him. Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the wicked; For there will be no prospect for the evil man; The lamp of the wicked will be put out. My son, fear the LORD and the king; Do not associate with those given to change; For their calamity will rise suddenly, And who knows the ruin those two can bring? These things also belong to the wise: It is not good to show partiality in judgment. He who says to the wicked, “You are righteous,” Him the people will curse; Nations will abhor him. But those who rebuke the wicked will have delight, And a good blessing will come upon them. He who gives a right answer kisses the lips. Prepare your outside work, Make it fit for yourself in the field; And afterward build your house. Do not be a witness against your neighbor without cause, For would you deceive with your lips? Do not say, “I will do to him just as he has done to me; I will render to the man according to his work.” I went by the field of the lazy man, And by the vineyard of the man devoid of understanding; And there it was, all overgrown with thorns; Its surface was covered with nettles; Its stone wall was broken down. When I saw it, I considered it well; I looked on it and received instruction: A little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to rest; So shall your poverty come like a prowler, And your need like an armed man.

Proverbs 24:1-34 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Do not be envious of evil men, Nor desire to be with them; For their minds plot violence, And their lips talk of trouble [for the innocent]. Through [skillful and godly] wisdom a house [a life, a home, a family] is built, And by understanding it is established [on a sound and good foundation], And by knowledge its rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches. A wise man is strong, And a man of knowledge strengthens his power; For by wise guidance you can wage your war, And in an abundance of [wise] counselors there is victory and safety. Wisdom is too exalted for a [hardened, arrogant] fool; He does not open his mouth in the gate [where the city’s rulers sit in judgment]. He who plans to do evil Will be called a schemer or deviser of evil. The devising of folly is sin, And the scoffer is repulsive to men. If you are slack (careless) in the day of distress, Your strength is limited. Rescue those who are being taken away to death, And those who stagger to the slaughter, Oh hold them back [from their doom]! If you [claim ignorance and] say, “See, we did not know this,” Does He not consider it who weighs and examines the hearts and their motives? And does He not know it who guards your life and keeps your soul? And will He not repay [you and] every man according to his works? My son, eat honey, because it is good, And the drippings of the honeycomb are sweet to your taste. Know that [skillful and godly] wisdom is [so very good] for your life and soul; If you find wisdom, then there will be a future and a reward, And your hope and expectation will not be cut off. Do not lie in wait, O wicked man, against the dwelling of the righteous; Do not destroy his resting place; For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again, But the wicked stumble in time of disaster and collapse. Do not rejoice and gloat when your enemy falls, And do not let your heart be glad [in self-righteousness] when he stumbles, Or the LORD will see your gloating and be displeased, And turn His anger away from your enemy. Do not get upset because of evildoers, Or be envious of the wicked, For there will be no future for the evil man; The lamp of the wicked will be put out. My son, fear the LORD and the king; And do not associate with those who are given to change [of allegiance, and are revolutionary], For their tragedy will rise suddenly, And who knows the punishment that both [the LORD and the king] will bring on the rebellious? These also are sayings of the wise: To show partiality in judgment is not good. He who says to the wicked, “You are righteous,” Peoples will curse him, nations will denounce him; But to those [honorable judges] who rebuke the wicked, it will go well with them and they will find delight, And a good blessing will come upon them. He kisses the lips [and wins the hearts of people] Who gives a right and straightforward answer. Prepare your work outside And get it ready for yourself in the field; Afterward build your house and establish a home. Do not be a witness against your neighbor without cause, And do not deceive with your lips [speak neither lies nor half-truths]. Do not say, “I will do to him as he has done to me; I will pay the man back for his deed.” I went by the field of the lazy man, And by the vineyard of the man lacking understanding and common sense; And, behold, it was all overgrown with thorns, And nettles were covering its surface, And its stone wall was broken down. When I saw, I considered it well; I looked and received instruction. “Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to rest [and daydream],” Then your poverty will come as a robber, And your want like an armed man.

Proverbs 24:1-33-34 The Passion Translation (TPT)

Don’t envy the wealth of the wicked or crave their company. For they’re obsessed with causing trouble and their conversations are corrupt. Wise people are builders — they build families, businesses, communities. And through intelligence and insight their enterprises are established and endure. Because of their skilled leadership, the hearts of people are filled with the treasures of wisdom and the pleasures of spiritual wealth. Wisdom can make anyone into a mighty warrior, and revelation-knowledge increases strength. Wise strategy is necessary to wage war, and with many astute advisers you’ll see the path to victory more clearly. Wisdom is a treasure too lofty for a quarreling fool — he’ll have nothing to say when leaders gather together. There is one who makes plans to do evil— Master Schemer is his name. If you plan to do evil, it’s as wrong as doing it. And everyone detests a troublemaker. If you faint when under pressure, you have need of courage. Go and rescue the perishing! Be their savior! Why would you stand back and watch them stagger to their death? And why would you say, “But it’s none of my business”? The one who knows you completely and judges your every motive is also the keeper of souls—and not just yours! He sees through your excuses and holds you responsible for failing to help those whose lives are threatened. Revelation-knowledge is a delicacy, sweet like flowing honey that melts in your mouth. Eat as much of it as you can, my friend! For then you will perceive what is true wisdom, your future will be bright, and this hope living within you will never disappoint you. Listen up, you wicked, irreverent ones— don’t harass the lovers of God and don’t invade their resting place. For the lovers of God may suffer adversity and stumble seven times, but they will continue to rise over and over again. But the unrighteous are brought down by just one calamity and will never be able to rise again. Never gloat when your enemy meets disaster, and don’t be quick to rejoice if he falls. For the Lord, who sees your heart, will be displeased with you and will pity your foe. Don’t be angrily offended over evildoers or be agitated by them. For the wicked have no life and no future— their light of life will die out. My child, stand in awe of Yahweh! Give counsel to others, but don’t mingle with those who are rebellious. For sudden destruction will fall upon them and their lives will be ruined in a moment. And who knows what retribution they will face! Those enlightened with wisdom have spoken these proverbs: Judgment must be impartial, for it is always wrong to be swayed by a person’s status. If you say to the guilty, “You are innocent,” the nation will curse you and the people will revile you. But when you convict the guilty, the people will thank you and reward you with favor. Speaking honestly is a sign of true friendship. Go ahead, build your career and give yourself to your work. But if you put me first, you’ll see your family built up! Why would you be a false accuser and slander with your words? Don’t ever spitefully say, “I’ll get even with him! I’ll do to him what he did to me!” One day I passed by the field of a lazy man, and I noticed the vineyards of a slacker. I observed nothing but thorns, weeds, and broken-down walls. So I considered their lack of wisdom, and I pondered the lessons I could learn from this: Professional work habits prevent poverty from becoming your permanent business partner. And: If you put off until tomorrow the work you could do today, tomorrow never seems to come.

Proverbs 24:1-34 English Standard Version 2016 (ESV)

Be not envious of evil men, nor desire to be with them, for their hearts devise violence, and their lips talk of trouble. By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches. A wise man is full of strength, and a man of knowledge enhances his might, for by wise guidance you can wage your war, and in abundance of counselors there is victory. Wisdom is too high for a fool; in the gate he does not open his mouth. Whoever plans to do evil will be called a schemer. The devising of folly is sin, and the scoffer is an abomination to mankind. If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small. Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, “Behold, we did not know this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work? My son, eat honey, for it is good, and the drippings of the honeycomb are sweet to your taste. Know that wisdom is such to your soul; if you find it, there will be a future, and your hope will not be cut off. Lie not in wait as a wicked man against the dwelling of the righteous; do no violence to his home; for the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity. Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles, lest the LORD see it and be displeased, and turn away his anger from him. Fret not yourself because of evildoers, and be not envious of the wicked, for the evil man has no future; the lamp of the wicked will be put out. My son, fear the LORD and the king, and do not join with those who do otherwise, for disaster will arise suddenly from them, and who knows the ruin that will come from them both? These also are sayings of the wise. Partiality in judging is not good. Whoever says to the wicked, “You are in the right,” will be cursed by peoples, abhorred by nations, but those who rebuke the wicked will have delight, and a good blessing will come upon them. Whoever gives an honest answer kisses the lips. Prepare your work outside; get everything ready for yourself in the field, and after that build your house. Be not a witness against your neighbor without cause, and do not deceive with your lips. Do not say, “I will do to him as he has done to me; I will pay the man back for what he has done.” I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down. Then I saw and considered it; I looked and received instruction. A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.

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