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 the master’s disgraceful child
and will even inherit a share of what the master leaves his children.
3A hot furnace tests silver and gold,
but the Lord tests hearts.
4Evil people listen to evil words.
Liars pay attention to cruel words.
5Whoever mistreats the poor insults their Maker;
whoever enjoys someone’s trouble will be punished.
6Old people are proud of their grandchildren,
and children are proud of their parents.
7Fools should not be proud,
and rulers should not be liars.
8Some people think they can pay others to do anything they ask.
They think it will work every time.
9Whoever forgives someone’s sin makes a friend,
but gossiping about the sin breaks up friendships.
10A wise person will learn more from a warning
than a fool will learn from a hundred lashings.
11Disobedient people look only for trouble,
so a cruel messenger will be sent against them.
12It is better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs
than to meet a fool doing foolish things.
13Whoever gives evil in return for good
will always have trouble at home.
14Starting a quarrel is like a leak in a dam,
so stop it before a fight breaks out.
15The Lord hates both of these things:
freeing the guilty and punishing the innocent.
16It won’t do a fool any good to try to buy wisdom,
because he doesn’t have the ability to be wise.
17A friend loves you all the time,
and a brother helps in time of trouble.
18It is not wise to promise
to pay what your neighbor owes.
19Whoever loves to argue loves to sin.
Whoever brags a lot 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 child;
there is no joy in being the parent of a fool.
22A happy heart is like good medicine,
but a broken spirit drains your strength.
23When the wicked accept money to do wrong
there can be no justice.
24The person with understanding is always looking for wisdom,
but the mind of a fool wanders everywhere.
25Foolish children make their father sad
and cause their mother great sorrow.
26It is not good to punish the innocent
or to beat leaders for being honest.
27The wise say very little,
and those with understanding stay calm.
28Even fools seem to be wise if they keep quiet;
if they don’t speak, they appear to understand.
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The Holy Bible, New Century Version, Copyright © 2005 Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved.