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1These also are proverbs of Solomon which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied.

2It is the glory of God to conceal things,

but the glory of kings is to search things out.

3As the heavens for height, and the earth for depth,

so the mind of kings is unsearchable.

4Take away the dross from the silver,

and the smith has material for a vessel;

5take away the wicked from the presence of the king,

and his throne will be established in righteousness.

6Do not put yourself forward in the king’s presence

or stand in the place of the great;

7for it is better to be told, “Come up here,”

than to be put lower in the presence of the prince.

What your eyes have seen

8do not hastily bring into court;

for what will you do in the end,

when your neighbor puts you to shame?

9Argue your case with your neighbor himself,

and do not disclose another’s secret;

10lest he who hears you bring shame upon you,

and your ill repute have no end.

11A word fitly spoken

is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.

12Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold

is a wise reprover to a listening ear.

13Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest

is a faithful messenger to those who send him,

he refreshes the spirit of his masters.

14Like clouds and wind without rain

is a man who boasts of a gift he does not give.

15With patience a ruler may be persuaded,

and a soft tongue will break a bone.

16If you have found honey, eat only enough for you,

lest you be sated with it and vomit it.

17Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor’s house,

lest he become weary of you and hate you.

18A man who bears false witness against his neighbor

is like a war club, or a sword, or a sharp arrow.

19Trust in a faithless man in time of trouble

is like a bad tooth or a foot that slips.

20He who sings songs to a heavy heart

is like one who takes off a garment on a cold day,

and like vinegar on a wound.

21If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat;

and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;

22for you will heap coals of fire on his head,

and the Lord will reward you.

23The north wind brings forth rain;

and a backbiting tongue, angry looks.

24It is better to live in a corner of the housetop

than in a house shared with a contentious woman.

25Like cold water to a thirsty soul,

so is good news from a far country.

26Like a muddied spring or a polluted fountain

is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.

27It is not good to eat much honey,

so be sparing of complimentary words.

28A man without self-control

is like a city broken into and left without walls.

Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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