24
Don't be jealous of evil people; don't long to spend time with them,
for they think up cruel plans and discuss how to cause trouble.
A house is built by wisdom; its foundation is made secure through understanding.
Its rooms are filled by knowledge with all kinds of valuable and beautiful objects.
If you have wisdom, you are strong; if you have knowledge, your power increases,
for with wise guidance you can go to war; you will be victorious by having many good advisors.
Wisdom goes over the heads of stupid people; they have nothing to contribute when important matters are discussed.*
Anyone who plans to do evil will be seen as a troublemaker.
Plans thought up by stupid people are sinful. Everyone hates those who are scornful of others.
10 If you give up in times of trouble, it shows how weak you are.
11 Rescue those who are being led away to be executed; save those who are stumbling on their way to be slaughtered.
12 If you say, “Look, we didn't know anything about this,” don't you think the God who judges your motives will see what's happening? He who watches over you knows, and he will pay people back for what they've done.
13 My son, eating honey is good for you; the honeycomb tastes sweet.
14 In the same way, you should know that wisdom is good for you; if you find it, there will be a future for you, and your hope will not be crushed.
15 Don't be like a criminal waiting to ambush the home of good people; don't attack the place where they live.
16 Those who do right may fall down seven times, and still get up again; but the wicked are brought down by disaster.
17 Don't celebrate when your enemies fall; don't be glad when they trip up,
18 otherwise when the Lord sees it, he'll be unhappy with you and won't punish your enemies as he planned.
19 Don't get all upset over the wicked, or be jealous of those who do wrong,
20 for evil people have no future—the lamp of the wicked will be snuffed out.
21 My son, honor the Lord and the king, and don't join those who are rebellious,
22 for disaster will suddenly fall on them. Who knows how the Lord and king will punish them?
23 These are more sayings of the wise: Showing favoritism when passing judgment is wrong.
24 Those who tell the guilty, “You're innocent,” will be cursed by the people and hated by the nation,
25 while those who convict the guilty will be appreciated, and will receive a rich blessing.
26 An honest answer is a kiss on the lips.
27 Do the work you need to do outside first, then prepare and sow your fields, and only after that start building your house.
28 Don't testify against your neighbors without having a good reason, and don't tell lies.
29 Don't say to yourself, “I'm going to do to him what he did to me! I'll pay him back for what he's done!”
30 I walked past the field of a lazy man, past a vineyard of someone with no sense.
31 It was all overgrown with thorns, the ground was covered with weeds, and the stone wall had fallen down.
32 As I looked I thought about it, and what I saw taught me a lesson:
33 You may say,Please, just a little more sleep, a little longer snooze, a little more folding of the arms to rest”—
34 and poverty will attack you like a robber, destitution like an armed warrior.§
* 24:7 Literally, “he does not open his mouth in the gate.” 24:22 “The Lord and king”: literally “they both,” referring back to the previous verse. 24:33 “You may say”: implied. § 24:34 Verses 33 and 34 are the same as 6:10-11.