Proverbs 28
Contemporary English Version

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.+

3When someone poor takes over

and mistreats 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 mistreats 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.+

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.


28.2 but … order: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
28.17 live: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 17.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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