The Law of God makes sense
1Wicked people run away
when no one chases them,
but those who live right
are as brave as lions.
2In time of civil war
there are many leaders,
but a sensible leader
restores law and order.#28.2 but … order: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
3When someone poor takes over
and ill-treats the poor,
it's like a heavy rain
destroying the crops.
4Lawbreakers praise criminals,
but law-abiding citizens
always oppose them.
5Criminals don't know
what justice means,
but all who respect the Lord
understand it completely.
6It's better to be poor
and live right,
than to be rich
and dishonest.
7It makes good sense
to obey the Law of God,
but you disgrace your parents
if you make friends
with worthless nobodies.
8If you make money by charging
high interest rates,
you will lose it all to someone
who cares for the poor.
9God cannot stand the prayers
of anyone who disobeys
his Law.
10By leading good people to sin,
you dig a pit for yourself,
but all who live right
will have a bright future.
11The rich think highly
of themselves,
but anyone poor and sensible
sees right through them.
12When an honest person wins,
it's time to celebrate;
when crooks are in control,
it's best to hide.
13If you don't confess your sins,
you will be a failure.
But God will be merciful
if you confess your sins
and give them up.
14The Lord blesses everyone
who is afraid to do evil,
but if you are cruel,
you will end up in trouble.
15A ruler who ill-treats the poor
is like a roaring lion
or a bear hunting for food.
16A heartless leader is a fool,
but anyone who refuses
to get rich by cheating others
will live a long time.
17Don't give help to murderers!
Make them stay on the run
for as long as they live.#28.17 live: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 17.
18Honesty will keep you safe,
but everyone who is crooked
will suddenly fall.
19Work hard, and you will have
a lot of food;
waste time, and you will have
a lot of trouble.
20God blesses his loyal people,
but punishes all who want
to get rich quick.
21It isn't right to be unfair,
but some people can be bribed
with only a piece of bread.
22Don't be selfish
and eager to get rich—
you will end up worse off
than you can imagine.
23Honest correction
is appreciated
more than flattery.
24If you cheat your parents
and don't think it's wrong,
you are a common thief.
25Selfish people cause trouble,
but you will live a full life
if you trust the Lord.
26Only fools would trust
what they alone think,
but if you live by wisdom,
you will do all right.
27Giving to the poor
will keep you from poverty,
but if you close your eyes
to their needs,
everyone will curse you.
28When crooks are in control,
everyone tries to hide,
but when they lose power,
good people are everywhere.
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