1Don’t brag about tomorrow,
since you don’t know what the day will bring.
2Let someone else praise you, not your own mouth—
a stranger, not your own lips.
3A stone is heavy and sand is weighty,
but the resentment caused by a fool is even heavier.
4Anger is cruel, and wrath is like a flood,
but jealousy is even more dangerous.
5An open rebuke
is better than hidden love!
6Wounds from a sincere friend
are better than many kisses from an enemy.
7A person who is full refuses honey,
but even bitter food tastes sweet to the hungry.
8A person who strays from home
is like a bird that strays from its nest.
9The heartfelt counsel of a friend
is as sweet as perfume and incense.
10Never abandon a friend—
either yours or your father’s.
When disaster strikes, you won’t have to ask your brother for assistance.
It’s better to go to a neighbor than to a brother who lives far away.
11Be wise, my child,# Hebrew my son. and make my heart glad.
Then I will be able to answer my critics.
12A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions.
The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.
13Get security from someone who guarantees a stranger’s debt.
Get a deposit if he does it for foreigners.# As in Greek and Latin versions (see also 20:16); Hebrew reads for a promiscuous woman.
14A loud and cheerful greeting early in the morning
will be taken as a curse!
15A quarrelsome wife is as annoying
as constant dripping on a rainy day.
16Stopping her complaints is like trying to stop the wind
or trying to hold something with greased hands.
17As iron sharpens iron,
so a friend sharpens a friend.
18As workers who tend a fig tree are allowed to eat the fruit,
so workers who protect their employer’s interests will be rewarded.
19As a face is reflected in water,
so the heart reflects the real person.
20Just as Death and Destruction# Hebrew Sheol and Abaddon. are never satisfied,
so human desire is never satisfied.
21Fire tests the purity of silver and gold,
but a person is tested by being praised.# Or by flattery.
22You cannot separate fools from their foolishness,
even though you grind them like grain with mortar and pestle.
23Know the state of your flocks,
and put your heart into caring for your herds,
24for riches don’t last forever,
and the crown might not be passed to the next generation.
25After the hay is harvested and the new crop appears
and the mountain grasses are gathered in,
26your sheep will provide wool for clothing,
and your goats will provide the price of a field.
27And you will have enough goats’ milk for yourself,
your family, and your servant girls.