1A man who separates himself seeks his own ta'avah (desire); he defies all tushiyyah (wisdom, sound judgment). 2A kesil (fool) hath no delight in tevunah (understanding), but only in airing out his lev (mind, opinions). 3When the rashah cometh, then cometh also contempt, and with dishonor, cherpah (reproach, disgrace). 4The devarim of a man's mouth are deep mayim; the makor chochmah is a flowing stream. 5It is not tov to show partiality to the rashah, to subvert the tzaddik in mishpat. 6The sfatayim (lips) of a kesil enter into contention, and his peh (mouth) inviteth blows. 7The peh (mouth) of a kesil is his undoing, and his sfatayim (lips) are the mokesh (snare) of his nefesh. 8The devarim of a nirgan (gossip, talebearer, slanderer) are like mitlachamim (delicious tidbits), and they go down into the innermost parts of the beten (belly). 9He also that is slack in his work is brother to him that is ba'al mashchit (master of destruction). 10The Shem of Hashem is a strong migdal (tower), the tzaddik runneth into it, and is safe. 11The oisher's wealth is his strong city, and is a high chomah in his own conceit. 12Before shever (destruction) the lev ish is haughty, and before kavod is anavah (humility). 13He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and kelimmah (reproach, shame) unto him. 14The ruach ish will sustain him in sickness, but a crushed ruach who can bear? 15The lev of the prudent acquireth da'as, and the ozen of the chachamim seeketh da'as. 16The mattan adam (gift of a man) openeth the way for him, and bringeth him before gedolim. 17He that is harishon (the first) to make his case seemeth tzaddik, but his re'a cometh and doth cross-examine him. 18The goral (lot) causeth contentions to cease, and keepeth the mighty apart. 19A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city, and their contentious quarrelings are like the bars of an armon (citadel). 20An ish's beten shall be filled with the fruit of his peh (mouth), and with the produce of his sfatayim (lips) shall he be satisfied. 21Mavet and chayyim are in the power of the lashon, and they that love it shall eat the p'ri (fruit) thereof. 22He who findeth an isha (wife) findeth tov, and obtaineth ratzon (favor) from Hashem. 23The poor useth entreaties, but the oisher answereth roughly. 24An ish of many companions may come to ruin, but there is an ohev (friend) that sticketh closer than a brother.
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2002,2003,2008,2010,2011 by Artists for Israel International, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.