Proverbs 1
International Standard Version Par ▾ 

Introduction and Purpose

1The proverbs of David’s son Solomon, king of Israel.

2These proverbs area for gainingb wisdom and discipline;c

for understanding words of insight;

3for acquiring the disciplined that produces wise behavior,

righteousness, justice, and upright living;e

4for giving prudence to the naïve,

and knowledge and discretion to the young.

5Let the wise listen and increase theirf learning;

let the person of understanding receive guidance

6in understanding proverbs, clever sayings,

words of the wise, and their riddles.

The Major Theme

7The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge,

but fools despise wisdom and discipline.g

The Minor Theme

8My son, listen to your father’s instruction,

and do not let go of your mother’s teaching.

9They will be a graceful wreath for your head

and a chain for your neck.

Avoid Evil Counsel

10My son, if sinners entice you,

do not consent.

11If they say, “Come with us!

Let’s lie in wait for blood;

let’s ambush some innocent person for no reason at all.

12Let’s swallow them alive like Sheol,h

and whole like those who go down into the Pit.i

13We’ll find all kinds of valuable wealth,

and we’ll fill our houses with spoil.

14Throw your lot in with us,

and all of us will have one purse.”

15My son, do not go along with them,j

and keep your feet away from their paths!

16For theyk run toward evil;

these enticersl shed blood without hesitation.m

17Look, it is useless to spread a net in full view ofn all the birds,

18but these peopleo lie in wait for their own blood.p

They ambush only themselves.

19Such is the way of all those who seek illicit gain—

it takes away the lives of those who possess it.

The Benefits of Choosing Wisdom

20Wisdom cries out in the street;

she raises her voice in the public squares.

21She calls out at the busiest partq of the noisy streets,r

and at the entrance to the gates of the city she utters her words:

22“You naïve ones, how long will you love naiveté?

And how long will scoffers delight in scoffing

or fools hate knowledge?”

23Return to my correction!

Look, I will pour out my spirit on you,

and I will make my words known to you.

The Consequences of Refusing Wisdom

24“Because I called out to you and you refused to respond—s

I appealed,t but no one paid attention—

25becauseu you neglected all my advice

and did not want my correction,

26I will laugh at your calamity.

I will mock when what you fearv comes,

27when what you dread comes like a storm,

and your calamity comes on like a whirlwind,

when distress and anguish come upon you.

28“Then they will call out to me,

but I will not answer;

they will seek me diligently,

but they will not find me.

29“Because they hated knowledge

and did not choose the fear of the LORD;

30they did not want my advice,

and they rejected all my correction.

31They will eat the fruitw of their way,

and they will be filled with their own devices.

32Indeed, the waywardnessx of the naïve will kill them,

and the complacency of fools will destroy them.

33“But the person who listens to me will live safely

and will be secure from the fear of evil.”

a 1:2 The Heb. lacks These proverbs are
b 1:2 Or knowing
c 1:2 Or instruction
d 1:3 Or instruction
e 1:3 Lit. and uprightness
f 1:5 The Heb. lacks their
g 1:7 Or instruction
h 1:12 i.e. the realm of the dead; possibly an allusion to the rebellion of Korah (cf. Num 16:33)
i 1:12 i.e. the place of punishment in the afterlife
j 1:15 Lit. in the way with them
k 1:16 Lit. For their feet
l 1:16 Lit. they
m 1:16 Lit. blood quickly
n 1:17 Lit. in the eyes of
o 1:18 Lit. they
p 1:18 The Heb. lacks their own
q 1:21 Lit. head
r 1:21 So MT; LXX Syr Targ read and on top of the walls
s 1:24 Lit. you refused
t 1:24 Lit. I stretched out my hand
u 1:25 The Heb. lacks because
v 1:26 Lit. when your fear
w 1:31 i.e. experience the consequences
x 1:32 So MT; DSS 4QProv reads narrow-mindedness; lit. the pull of; LXX reads Because they would wrong the naïve, they will be murdered

The Holy Bible: International Standard Version® Release 2.1
Copyright © 1996-2012 The ISV Foundation

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