Warnings Against Foolish Acts
1My son, don’t promise to pay for what your neighbor owes.
Don’t agree to pay a stranger’s bill.
2 Don’t be trapped by what you have said.
Don’t be caught by the words of your mouth.
3 Instead, my son, do something to free yourself.
Don’t fall into your neighbor’s hands.
Go until you can’t go anymore.
Don’t let your neighbor rest.
4 Don’t let your eyes go to sleep.
Don’t let your eyelids close.
5 As a deer frees itself from a hunter, free yourself.
As a bird frees itself from a trapper, free yourself.
6 You people who don’t want to work, think about the ant!
Consider its ways and be wise!
7 It has no commander.
It has no leader or ruler.
8 But it stores up its food in summer.
It gathers its food at harvest time.
9 You lazy people, how long will you lie there?
When will you get up from your sleep?
10 You might sleep a little or take a little nap.
You might even fold your hands and rest.
11 Then you would be poor, as if someone had robbed you.
You would have little, as if someone had stolen from you.
12 An evil troublemaker
goes around saying twisted things with his mouth.
13 He winks with his eyes.
He makes signals with his feet.
He motions with his fingers.
14 His plans are evil, and he has lies in his heart.
He is always stirring up fights.
15 Trouble will catch up with him in an instant.
He will suddenly be destroyed, and nothing can save him.
16 There are six things the Lord hates.
In fact, he hates seven things.
17 The Lord hates proud eyes,
a lying tongue,
and hands that kill those who aren’t guilty.
18 He also hates hearts that make evil plans
and feet that are quick to do evil.
19 He hates any witness who pours out lies
and anyone who stirs up conflict in the community.
A Warning Against Committing Adultery
20 My son, keep your father’s command.
Don’t turn away from your mother’s teaching.
21 Always tie them on your heart.
Put them around your neck.
22 When you walk, they will guide you.
When you sleep, they will watch over you.
When you wake up, they will speak to you.
23 Your father’s command is like a lamp.
Your mother’s teaching is like a light.
And whatever instructs and corrects you
leads to life.
24 It keeps you from your neighbor’s wife.
It keeps you from the smooth talk of a woman who commits adultery.
25 Don’t hunger in your heart after her beauty.
Don’t let her eyes capture you.
26 A prostitute can be bought for only a loaf of bread.
But another man’s wife hunts your very life.
27 You can’t shovel fire into your lap
without burning your clothes.
28 You can’t walk on hot coals
without burning your feet.
29 It’s the same for anyone who has sex with another man’s wife.
Anyone who touches her will be punished.
30 People don’t hate a thief who steals
to fill his empty stomach.
31 But when he is caught, he must pay seven times as much as he stole.
It may even cost him everything he has.
32 A man who commits adultery has no sense.
Anyone who does it destroys himself.
33 He will be beaten up and dishonored.
His shame will never be wiped away.
34 Jealousy stirs up a husband’s anger.
He will show no mercy when he gets even.
35 He won’t accept any payment.
He won’t take any money, no matter how much he is offered.