These are more proverbs of Solomon, collected by the scribes of Hezekiah, king of Judah.
God's greatness is in doing things that can't be known, while the greatness of kings is in revealing things.
Just as the height of the heavens or the depth of the earth can't be known, the king's thinking can't be known.
Remove the waste from the silver, and the silversmith has pure silver to work with.
Remove the wicked from the king's presence and the king will rule securely and justly.
Don't try to make yourself look great before the king, and don't pretend to be among the important people,
for it's better to be told, “Come up here,” than to be humiliated before a nobleman. Even though you've seen something with your own eyes,
don't rush to take legal action, for what are you going to do in the end when your neighbor shows you're wrong and humiliates you?
Discuss the case with your neighbor himself, and don't betray someone else's secret,
10 otherwise whoever hears it will make you ashamed and you'll never lose your bad reputation.
11 Advice given at the right time is like golden apples set in silver.
12 Constructive criticism from the wise to someone who listens is like a gold ring and a necklace of fine gold.
13 Faithful messengers are as refreshing to their master as cold snow on a hot harvest day.
14 Someone who boasts about a gift they never give is like cloud and wind without rain.
15 If you're patient you can persuade your superior, and soft words can break down opposition.*
16 If you find honey, eat just enough, for if you eat too much, you'll be sick.
17 Don't set foot in your neighbors' homes too often, otherwise they'll get fed up with you and hate you.
18 Telling lies in court against a friend is like attacking them with a mace, or a sword, or an arrow.
19 Trusting in unreliable people in times of trouble is like eating with a broken tooth or walking on a bad foot.
20 Singing happy songs to someone who's broken-hearted is like taking off your coat on a cold day, or pouring vinegar onto an open wound.
21 If your enemy is hungry, give him something to eat; if he's thirsty, give him a drink of water.
22 This will make him ashamed as if he had burning coals piled on his head, and the Lord will reward you.
23 In the same way that the north wind brings rain, slandering people makes them angry.
24 It's better to live in a corner of a housetop than to share a whole house with an argumentative wife.
25 Good news from a distant country is like cold water to an exhausted traveler.
26 Good people who give in to the wicked are like a muddied spring or a polluted well.
27 It's not good to eat too much honey, or to want too much praise.
28 Someone without control is as exposed as a town whose walls have been breached.
* 25:15 “Break down opposition”: literally “break bones,” in other words, have a powerful effect. 25:20 “An open wound”: Septuagint reading. Hebrew has “soda.” Vinegar on soda would cause an effervescent reaction. 25:27 The second part of this verse is uncertain.