Proverbs 23

23:1 When you sit down to eat with a ruler,

consider carefully1 what2 is before you,

23:2 and put a knife to your throat3

if you possess a large appetite.4

23:3 Do not crave that ruler’s5 delicacies,

for6 that food is deceptive.7

23:4 Do not wear yourself out to become rich;

be wise enough to restrain yourself.8

23:5 When you gaze upon riches,9 they are gone,

for they surely make wings for themselves,

and fly off into the sky like an eagle!10

23:6 Do not eat the food of a stingy person,11

do not crave his delicacies;

23:7 for he is12 like someone calculating the cost13 in his mind.14

“Eat and drink,” he says to you,

but his heart is not with you;

23:8 you will vomit up15 the little bit you have eaten,

and will have wasted your pleasant words.16

23:9 Do not speak in the ears of a fool,17

for he will despise the wisdom of your words.18

23:10 Do not move an ancient boundary stone,

or take over19 the fields of the fatherless,

23:11 for their Protector20 is strong;

he will plead their case against you.21

23:12 Apply22 your heart to instruction

and your ears to the words of knowledge.

23:13 Do not withhold discipline from a child;

even if you strike him with the rod, he will not die.

23:14 If you strike23 him with the rod,

you will deliver him24 from death.25

23:15 My child,26 if your heart is wise,

then my heart also will be glad;

23:16 my soul27 will rejoice

when your lips speak what is right.28

23:17 Do not let your heart envy29 sinners,

but rather be zealous in fearing the Lord30 all the time.

23:18 For surely there is a future,31

and your hope will not be cut off.32

23:19 Listen, my child,33 and be wise,

and guide your heart on the right way.

23:20 Do not spend time34 among drunkards,35

among those who eat too much36 meat,

23:21 because drunkards and gluttons become impoverished,

and drowsiness37 clothes them with rags.38

23:22 Listen to your father who begot you,

and do not despise your mother when she is old.

23:23 Acquire39 truth and do not sell it –

wisdom, and discipline, and understanding.

23:24 The father of a righteous person will rejoice greatly;40

whoever fathers a wise child41 will have joy in him.

23:25 May your father and your mother have joy;

may she who bore you rejoice.42

23:26 Give me your heart, my son,43

and let your eyes observe my ways;

23:27 for a prostitute is like44 a deep pit;

a harlot45 is like46 a narrow well.47

23:28 Indeed, she lies in wait like a robber,48

and increases the unfaithful49 among men.50

23:29 Who has woe?51 Who has sorrow?

Who has contentions? Who has complaints?

Who has wounds without cause? Who has dullness52 of the eyes?

23:30 Those who linger over wine,

those who go looking for mixed wine.53

23:31 Do not look on the wine when it is red,

when it sparkles54 in the cup,

when it goes down smoothly.55

23:32 Afterward56 it bites like a snake,

and stings like a viper.

23:33 Your eyes will see strange things,57

and your mind will speak perverse things.

23:34 And you will be like one who lies down in the midst58 of the sea,

and like one who lies down on the top of the rigging.59

23:35 You will say,60 “They have struck me, but I am not harmed!

They beat me, but I did not know it!61

When will I awake? I will look for another drink.”62

Next Chapter