The style of Proverbs changes dramatically at the end of chapter 9.
Chapters 1-9 contained the "instruction" format in which the author
instructed his son/reader about wisdom. There most of the verses were
two or three line sayings where a discernable train of thought was
developed in each instruction. Proverbs 10-31 contains the kind of
material most often associated with Proverbs – short, two or three line
sayings about life. Those who study Proverbs have not been able to find
any theme that connects whole chapters in the material following chapter
9. There are places in which a common theme is pursued for four or five
verses and the final 22 verses of Proverbs 31 are devoted to the
description of the ideal wife. However, the style of Proverbs 10-31 is
quite different from that of chapter 1-9.
Therefore, rather than attempting to pursue paragraph-by-paragraph
study, we will deal with different topics addressed by the proverbs of
chapter 10-31. This will entail the collection of various individual
proverbs relating to each theme. Many of the proverbs of 10-31 deal with
certain kinds of people; the simple, the fool, the hothead, the scoffer,
etc. These proverbs provide ample instruction in the kind of person we
should strive to be and the way in which we should conduct our
relationships. (For a list of the Proverbs examined below, see the
Readings section in Lesson 5.)
The Simple: Proverbs 14:15; 22:3; 27:12; 14:18
The Book of Proverbs distinguishes between the na´ve or inexperienced
young person and the foolish person who refuses instruction. Harsh words
are directed toward the fool, but there is great concern for the simple
person who has not yet learned. That simple one is most susceptible to
evil and to foolishness. The first characteristic of such a na´ve person
is the tendency to believe anything. The Hebrew text indicates that this
simpleton will trust every word. There has never been a time in history
when it was safe to believe everything one hears. Unscrupulous people
are ready to deceive the moment they suspect an innocent ear. It is
possible to be too suspicious and not be able to trust anyone far enough
to establish normal communication and friendships. However, it is also
important not to be gullible. An instinct for what makes sense is
important; the one who lacks it will be taken for many a ride.
That instinct must be built up by experience and by instruction in
wisdom. It is hard work to learn to think for oneself, but Proverbs
understands the danger of not being able to do so. The second line of
Proverbs 14:15 shows the point of the warning about being gullible. The
line reads, "The prudent give thoughts to their steps." The issue
is not correctness versus incorrectness, but the best way to live.
Proverbs 22:3 and 27:12 are virtually identical. A slight conjugation
difference in the verbs is all that distinguishes them in Hebrew. The
positive term, often translated "prudent" (NRSV: clever), speaks
of craftiness and the ability to figure things out. The Anchor Bible
translates it "shrewd" in 22:3. People with such wisdom anticipate evil
and avoid it. On the other hand the na´ve blunder full-speed ahead into
evil and end up suffering severe consequences for their lack of
There is a play on words in the Hebrew text in this second line of
22:3. The basic meaning of the verb is to "go on" or "pass
through." Evil is not mentioned in the second line but implied from the
first line (NRSV: danger). The na´ve go on into evil without a
thought. However, the verb "go on" can also be translated
"transgress" in some contexts. (A transgression is going on past the
boundary set by the law of God.) Thus one could translate, "The na´ve
transgress and are punished as a result." The proverb makes no reference
to the particular punishment or suffering that the na´ve will face. The
painful consequences are different in almost every case of foolishness.
When both lines of Proverbs 22:3 and 27:12 are taken together they
point out a very important fact. There are times in life when it is best
to run and hide. Obviously there are also times when it is necessary to
stand and fight. In typical pragmatic fashion, Proverbs bases the
decision of when to do which on one’s chances for winning. There are
certain temptations at certain times of our lives that are best dealt
with by running. There are other times and temptations where we must
take a stand. The measure of wisdom is the ability to understand oneself
well enough to know when he or she can be victorious standing and
fighting and when that will lead to disaster.
The end result is stated in Proverbs 14:18. The na´ve become fools and
the prudent begin to possess knowledge. One does not stay na´ve forever.
At some point it is no longer immaturity or lack of experience but plain
old stupidity. The na´ve who will not learn from experience become fools
doomed to repeating their wrong choices over and over. On the other
hand, wisdom provides compounded interest.
Characteristics of a Fool: Proverbs 17:10; 16; 24; 27:22; 15:14;
26:11; 18:2; 28:26; 12:15; and 14:33
For Christians schooled in Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 5:22 concerning
the dangers of calling someone a "fool," Proverbs sounds very harsh and
judgmental. As Aitken (p. 96) notes, "Israel…did not suffer fools
gladly. While they had every hope that the simple would heed their
instruction and become wise, they expected nothing of the sort from the
Proverbs 17:16 bluntly declares that a fool has no mind. The
Hebrew word is "heart," which spoke of the seat of the will. NRSV
captures the meaning when it translates that the fool has "no mind to
learn." The verse is warning against investing money (or too much
time) in a fool since that investment is sure to be lost.
Proverbs 17:24 points out that the wise are committed to learning
wisdom, but the fool’s attention is easily distracted. The issue is not
that some people are just easily distracted and there is no hope for
them. The point is that wisdom comes from the discipline of staying
focused. Naturally there are some people for whom staying focused is
more difficult than it is for others. That is true in many areas of
life, but does not change the necessity of extra discipline in difficult
A significant part of wisdom is the ability to learn from experience.
Proverbs 17:10 and 27:22 point out that fools resist instruction from
the voice of experience. Verse 17:10 uses a comparative statement to
make the point. A single word of rebuke is more effective to a wise
person than a hundred blows to the fool. The issue is openness to
instruction and changing of behavior. Even if life or society should
deal crushing blows to the fool as 27:22 suggests, foolishness refuses
to be eliminated. The problem is not that the fool is lacking mental
capacity. Rather, his appetite is for foolishness. That is the point of
Proverbs 26:11 expresses the point with more disgust. "Like a dog
returning to his vomit is the fool that repeats his folly." Not only
does the fool have a perverse taste for foolishness he seeks the easy
and fun way in life.
Proverbs 18:2 points out that the fool does not enjoy understanding.
Wisdom requires the discipline of learning but the fool prefers the more
immediate reward of hearing the sound of his own voice. Since wisdom is
such hard work and his own words sound so good the fool sees no need to
pay the price of instruction. The problem with such a view is that it
erects its own defense against good sense. Thus Proverbs 28:26 and 12:15
point out that fools are convinced of their own rightness; only the wise
are ready to be corrected. Such arrogance is never wise and never
More Characteristics of a Fool: Proverbs 13:16; 12:23; 17:28; 26:7; 9;
15:2; 7; 24:7; 29:11; 12:16; 20:3; 14:16; 13:19; 10:23; 15:21; 14:8; 12;
Wisdom provides a quiet protection for those who seek her, but fools
quickly expose their foolishness. Proverbs 13:16 and 12:23 point out
that fools are rarely ashamed of their folly. Rather, they seek to
display their stupidity on front and center stage. One of the areas in
which their foolishness is most obvious is discovered simply by
listening to them. The words that foolish people speak are devastating
revelations of folly. Thus the smartest thing a foolish person can do is
to keep his or her mouth shut.
In fact, Proverbs 17:28 points out that it is hard to tell the
difference between a wise person and a fool who remains silent. One of
the hallmarks of the fool is his inability to remain silent. A more
contemporary expression of this proverb is, "Better to keep quiet and
have people wonder if you are a fool, than to speak and remove all
doubt." Once the fool succumbs to the temptation to "shoot off his
mouth" his very words turn against him. That is the point of Proverbs
26:7 and 9. Even a wise proverb in the mouth of a fool is as useless as
lame legs or as painfully stupid as the drunk who grasps a thorn bush
for support. Proverbs 15:2 and 7 paint a vivid contrast between the wise
and the fool. The wise person uses knowledge well and calmly. Wise
speech is considered and considerate. On the other hand the fool’s mouth
gushes with foolishness.
However, it is not just in their words that fools expose their
ignorance. Attitudes and behavior are also clear indications of a
foolish person. Anger and irritation are part of life and every person
must learn to deal with those emotions. Wisdom teaches a person to delay
the expression of anger while a foolish person gives full expression to
his anger as Proverbs 29:11 observes. It is wiser to ignore an insult
than to pop off an immediate put-down. The result of a quick trigger
mouth is constant quarreling. Wise people understand the danger of
speaking before thinking and are cautious. The fool rushes in
The word in Proverbs 14:16 translated "careless" by the Revised
Standard Version comes from the root meaning confident and secure. The
fool feels free to act without thinking because of an exaggerated sense
that he will succeed and work everything out. It is easy to envy such
confident security but the final results are not worthwhile. Proverbs
13:19 points out that the desire for the fulfillment of personal goals
is so powerful for a fool that he or she would rather have the heart’s
desire than to avoid evil. This attitude can become so powerful that
fools will laugh off doing wrong. Proverbs 10:23 calls wrong-doing a
sport for fools and Proverbs 15:21 describes folly as joy for the
senseless. In contrast, the wise take pleasure in right conduct.
It is not difficult to find examples in present day life of these two
opposing ways of living. In the final analysis, "the wise get wiser and
the fools become more foolish" (Proverbs 14:8, 24). The bottom line is
that there is a way that seems right, but leads to death. Proverbs is
clear that wisdom leads to life and foolishness leads to death.
The Consequences of Foolishness: Proverbs 10:13, 14; 14:3; 18:6; 7;
26:3; 10:8; 16:22; 10:21; 19:3
Proverbs 10:13 and 14:3 note that punishment and suffering are the lot
of the foolish. Wisdom provides its own reward and senselessness will
bring its own pain. The "rod" was used for corporal punishment
and is frequently mentioned in Proverbs for the discipline of children.
It is likely that the word is used here in figuratively for painful
Alden (pp. 86-87) points out that the Old Testament emphasis on beating
or spanking represented an advance over other cultures of Biblical
times. Philistines and Babylonians gouged out the eyes of those they
captured and would display the dead bodies of those they killed as
trophies. Canaanites would cut off thumbs and toes. The Old Testament
had a higher view of the human body and would not disfigure or dismember
it. Proverbs 18:6 indicates that physical beating (flogging) could be
the consequence of foolishness. A parent, employer, or even enemy could
well administer such a painful rebuke for foolishness.
The word "rod" also appears in Proverbs 26:3 where it is described as
appropriate for a fool in the same way a whip is appropriate for a horse
and a bridle for a donkey. In this context the fool is compared to a
dumb animal. The point is that you cannot reason with a fool; he must be
physically forced into submission.
Proverbs also speaks of "ruin" as one of the consequences of
folly. Proverbs 10:8; 14; 18:7; and 19:3 all describe "ruin" as
the lot of the foolish. The Hebrew word translated "ruin" comes
from a root meaning to be broken, abolished, afraid, or dismayed. It was
used in Psalm 89:40 to describe the broken remnants of a destroyed city.
We would speak of the "ruins" of the city.
Most often the word is used in an abstract sense to mean the breaking
apart or destruction of a person’s life. It is this sense of the word
that is used in these proverbs. The life of foolishness will mean the
ruin and destruction of life. It may not happen immediately, but folly
destroys. The fascinating fact is that when foolishness leads to ruin
many people lash out against God as Proverbs 19:3 points out. Human
beings have a tendency to claim the credit when it should be given to
God and blame God when the fault lies at their own door. In fact, one of
the characteristics of sin ever since Genesis 3 is the tendency to blame
someone else. That tendency causes us to miss many opportunities for
Dealing With a Fool: Proverbs 27:3; 17:12; 23:9; 26:1; 4-6; 8; 10;
29:9; 14:7; 13:20
Dealing with fools is difficult. In fact, Proverbs 27:3 says that it is
easier to lug around a heavy stone and bag of sand than to put up with a
fool. Not only is it difficult; it is dangerous. Proverbs 17:12 declares
that it is safer to deal with a mother bear bereft of her cubs than to
meet a fool engaged in folly. A she-bear who has been robbed of her cubs
will respond with rage to any provocation. At least that much is
predictable. What a fool will do is totally unpredictable but often as
lethal as the enraged bear. Thus one’s behavior toward fools is a
significant part of wisdom.
The first advice these proverbs give is to watch what you say around a
fool. Proverbs 23:9 advises complete silence. The expression, "Do not
speak in the hearing of a fool," does not mean to refuse to talk
whenever an undesirable character might overhear. The Hebrew literally
says not to speak in the "ears" of a fool. The point is to not address a
fool directly. Don’t waste time trying to instruct a fool; it is wasted
effort. Proverbs 26:4 provides similar instruction. Answering a fool
when he has said something stupid brings you down to his level. It is
not worth it. However, the following verse commands the reader to answer
a fool according to his folly so his foolishness will not go
The contradiction of Proverbs 26:4 and 26:5 has often been troublesome
to those who did not understand the way proverbs work. Even some of the
Rabbis at various times in Jewish history have questioned the right of
Proverbs to be in the canon of Scripture on the basis of these two
verses. Garrett, however (p. 212), notes that these two proverbs
"illustrate the principle that aphorisms are by nature generalizations
that do not give the exhaustive truth on a whole corpus of wisdom."
In fact the two proverbs need to be together to bring out the difficult
of dealing with a fool. It is what Kidner (p. 162) calls "the dilemma of
those who would reason with the unreasonable." The conclusion is that a
wise person must make a careful choice every time he or she is addressed
by a fool. That choice is between being dragged down to the fool’s level
by responding or letting folly remain unanswered. One thing is clear.
Proverbs 29:9 says, "Don’t argue with a fool." The Hebrew text suggests
arguments that end up in court of law. Litigation with a fool is
dangerous, but so are arguments in general. Do not expect an objective
effort to learn the truth. Whether by mockery or by blustering fury the
argument will be emotionally violent.
Neither should a wise person trust a fool to accomplish anything
without some kind of trouble. Proverbs 26:6 says that sending a message
via a fool is a sure recipe for trouble. To hire a fool off the street
is to risk immense damage according to Proverbs 26:10. The Hebrew text
of this proverb is garbled and there have been many interpretations of
what the proverb originally intended. One of the more probable of such
interpretations is that a person may as well begin randomly shooting
arrows into a crowd as to hire a fool. The point of the verse, however
it may have been originally worded, is that no important task should be
put into fools’ hands.
Proverbs 14:7 and 13:20 suggest that the best way to deal with a fool
is to avoid his company altogether. As Aitken says (p. 105) a fool
generously shares his folly with his companions and fellowship with him
will tend to cause one to share in that folly. Neither the words nor the
experiences of a fool lead to wisdom. One might learn valuable lessons
from the sad ends to which fools come, but companions of the fools share
in the ruin rather than learning from it. The fool should be left to
suffer the consequences of his foolishness himself. By no means should
honor or public position be granted to a fool according to Proverbs 26:1
and 8. Snow in the summer is just out of place. Rain during the harvest
season is harmful. A stone tied into the sling is downright dangerous.
All three descriptions are applied to the idea of granting honor to a
The Hothead: Proverbs 17:27; 14:17; 29; 29:22; 15:18; 19:11; 19;
14:30; 25:28; 16:32; 22:24; 25; 15:1; 27:4
The hotheaded person with a short temper caused enough trouble that the
wise pondered the meaning of such behavior. Hebrew has some interesting
literal expressions for the short-tempered person. Proverbs 15:18
literally speaks of the "heated" one and the word is usually translated
as "hot-tempered." Proverbs 14:17 speaks of the "short-nosed"
person and this phrase is translated as "quick-tempered." In
contrast Proverbs 17:27 speaks of a person who is "cool in spirit"
to mean even tempered and Proverbs 14:29 speaks of a "long-nosed" person
as one slow to anger.
Proverbs make several points about the hothead. He acts foolishly.
Proverbs 14:17 and 29 both note this fact. His temper destroys his
judgment and his behavior is foolish even if he does not act like a fool
when he is not angry. So often a lost temper produces results worse than
whatever caused the person to loose their temper. On the other hand, a
person who controls his or her temper is able to think more clearly and
act more rationally. Often simply delaying one’s response to a difficult
situation allows better understanding to emerge. The hothead also causes
trouble. Proverbs 29:22 and 15:18 both describe the hothead stirring up
strife. Angry people create the heat that provokes more anger. This
leads to increasingly sharp disagreements. The escalation of dissension
will ultimately lead to out and out fighting.
The Hebrew text of Proverbs 19:19 appears to have been damaged and most
interpreters resort to some sort of interpretive reconstruction of the
text. The most likely meaning is that hothead gets into the same trouble
over and over. Kidner (p. 134) interprets the verse to mean that "an
ungovernable temper will repeatedly land its owner in fresh trouble.
Bailing such a person out of trouble will be a never-ending job. It is
also counterproductive because it allows the hothead to continue with
the delusion that his vice is harmless.
Proverbs 14:30 then concludes that this short- temperedness is
unhealthy. It causes ones bones to rot. The NIV catches the meaning of
the Hebrew well when it says that envy rots the bones. Hateful attitudes
kill from the inside out.
Proverbs 25:28 and 16:32 point out that the hothead is defenseless.
Without the protection of discipline and instruction the person lacking
self-control is almost powerless against what Aitken (p. 109) calls the
"destructive power of passion from within, or temptation from without."
The practical conclusion is to not make friends with a hothead as
Proverbs 22:24-25 advises. A person ought to try soft words instead of
harsh ones; that often makes the difference.
The Proud and the Scoffer: Proverbs 21:24; 24:9; 14:6; 15:12; 26:12;
19:25; 29; 21:11; 29:8; 13:10; 22:10; 16:18; 11:2; 29:3; 18:12; 21:4;
16:5; 15:33; 22:4
One of the worst fools is the scoffer. Proverbs 21:24 points out
that this mocking individual is arrogant and proud. He or she has no
regard for another person’s opinion. The scoffer clearly does not lack
mental capacity. Rather he or she chooses to avoid instruction. Proverbs
14:6 and 15:12 make that clear. The scoffer sees no need for such
instruction because he is "wise in his own eyes" as Proverbs 26:12 point
out. It is impossible to teach those who already know everything there
is to know. Kidner (p. 42) describes the scoffer as creating more
trouble than the ordinary fool because he plays the role of "debunker
and deliberate trouble-maker." The mocking debunking of some people
regarded as leaders in society and the church has dangerous long-range
consequences for the community in question. The sardonic know-it-all who
is contemptuous of the wisdom of the ages leads the impressionable
people astray and discourages those wishing to know the truth.
The scoffer’s arrogance and unteachability create conflict. Proverbs
29:8; 13:10; and 22:10 all refer to the strife that accompanies the
scoffer. The trouble-making tendencies of the scoffer lead him or her to
fan the flames of conflict. Verse 29:8 points out that it is the wise
who play the role of peace-maker. The mocking of faith and of social
well-being by the scoffer leaves a trail of destruction that a community
will be long repairing. The conclusion is inevitable. The scoffer must
go and Proverbs 22:10 commands that such a person be driven out.
The chief problem of the scoffer is pride and Proverbs has some strong
criticism for those who are proud. Proverbs 16:18 sums up the
foolishness of pride, "Pride goes before destruction and a haughty
spirit before a fall." The words translated "pride" and "haughty"
come from different Hebrew roots that both mean to be high or raised up.
The problem with pride is that the person has too high a view of himself
In Luke 18:9-14 Jesus told the parable of the tax- collector (publican)
and the Pharisee. In that parable the Pharisee exalted himself above the
tax- collector, above other human beings, and above his need for God.
One of the tragedies of pride is that it creates a false sense of
security that one is adequate in oneself for all life will present. In
fact, the essence of sin is that arrogant confidence that God’s word and
will do not matter compared to self-will and desire. Proverbs 21:4 makes
this theological connection between pride and sin.
However, most of the proverbs are more practically focused on the life
consequences of pride. Proverbs 16:18 and 18:12 describe destruction as
the result of pride. Proverbs 16:18 mentions a fall and Proverbs
11:12 mentions disgrace as outcomes of pride. Proverbs 29:3
reminds us of the parable of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15:11-32 as it
points to the fact that pride often leads to wasted resources.
The remedy for pride is humility. Humility is a correct understanding
of who we are in the sight of God. Humility is not an attitude of
self-hatred, for God highly values us. However, God created us to be his
obedient creatures rather than rival gods. That is why Proverbs 15:33
connects the fear of the Lord with instruction in wisdom and with
Study Questions for Reflection and Discussion
These readings and study questions are in preparation
for next week's lesson.
As you study each day ask the Lord to speak to you
through his word. Ask the Holy Spirit to make the word come alive to you
for that day.
Note: This section of Proverbs consists of short
proverbial sayings. We will approach the study topically, reading a
chapter each day, but focusing on verses from throughout Proverbs that
deal with the topic of the day. The
are listed after the discussion questions.
First Day: Read the notes on Proverbs 10-31 –
Look up the Scripture references given.
1. Identify one or two pieces of new information that seemed important
to you. Describe why these ideas were significant for your life.
2. Select one or two insights that have significant application in your
life. What spiritual meaning applies to your life from these insights?
3. Write a brief prayer asking the Lord to help you understand who you
are in Christ. Ask him to teach you your worth and other people’s worth
so genuine humility can grow in your life.
Second Day: Read Proverbs 15.
Now focus on Proverbs
26:13,14; 22:13; 19:24; 26:15; 10:26; 13:4; 16:26; 21:25; 20:4; 12:27;
26:16; 19:15; 12:24; 15:19; and 18:9.
1. Summarize the message of these focus proverbs in your own words.
Which of the proverbs comes closest to summing up the whole matter?
2. Which of these proverbs speaks most powerfully to you personally?
Why? What does the proverb tell you that you need to do?
3. Are the basic ideas of these proverbs new to you or familiar? If
familiar, where did you learn this? Thank God for that teaching. What
are you doing to pass it on to another generation? If these proverbs are
new, write a prayer asking the Lord to help you learn to live by their
Third Day: Read Proverbs 16.
Focus in on Proverbs
20:13; 24:30-34; and 6:6-11.
1. What attitude toward sleep and rest do these focus proverbs warn
against? How would you relate it to the message of Exodus 20:9-11?
2. Read Ephesians 4:28. How does its message fit in with that of these
3. Write a brief statement of the Bible’s view of work. What is the
purpose of work? Who benefits from work? What should happen to those who
don’t work? What should happen to those who can’t work?
Fourth Day: Read Proverbs 17.
Now focus on Proverbs
20:1; 23:19-21 and 29-35.
1. What view of drunkenness is presented in these focus verses? What
figures of speech do these proverbs use to communicate the danger of
drunkenness? What is the point of each figure of speech?
2. What are the consequences of drunkenness that these focus proverbs
teach? Have you seen similar results in people who you know? In your
opinion what is the worst consequence of drunkenness?
3. There appears to be a significant increase of drinking alcohol among
younger and younger people. Increasing numbers of churched children
socially drink and have become drunk. How do you think the church should
respond? What ministries and message should come from the church to its
Fifth Day: Read Proverbs 18.
Now focus on Proverbs
27:20; 28:25; 23:6-8; 11:24 and 25.
1. What two characteristics of greedy persons are described in these
focus proverbs? Do you struggle with either of these characteristics in
your own life? If so, what do you want to do about it?
2. The apostle speaks of greed or greediness in 1 Corinthians 5:10, 11;
6:10; Ephesians 4:19; 1 Thessalonians 2:5; 1 Timothy 3:8; and Titus 1:7.
How would you summarize his view of greediness?
3. Do you believe stinginess is compatible with Christlikeness? Why or
why not? Write a prayer asking God to help you become more generous and
telling him why you want that to happen.
Sixth Day: Read Proverbs 19.
Now focus in on
Proverbs 23:26-28; 22:14; and 30:20.
1. What do these focus proverbs teach about the "strange woman?" What
is the point of calling this woman a "deep pit?"
2. How does the message of these proverbs compare with the teaching
found in Proverbs 5-7? Which section of Proverbs provides the most
detailed instruction in this area of life?
3. Write a prayer asking the Lord to help you protect your own sexual
purity. Also ask him to direct you to what you can do to help make our
society more respectful of sexual purity.
26:13 The sluggard says, "There is a lion in the road! There is a lion
in the streets!"
26:14 As a door turns on its hinges, so does a sluggard on his bed.
22:13 The sluggard says, "There is a lion outside! I shall be slain in
19:24 The sluggard buries his hand in the dish, and will not even bring
it back to his mouth.
26:15 The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; it wears him out to
bring it back to his mouth.
26:16 The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes than seven men who can
10:26 Like vinegar to the teeth, and smoke to the eyes, so is the
sluggard to those who send him.
13:4 The soul of the sluggard craves, and gets nothing, while the
soul of the diligent is richly supplied.
16:26 A worker’s appetite works for him; his mouth urges him on.
21:25 The desire of the sluggard kills him for his hands refuse to
20:4 The sluggard does not plow in the autumn; he will seek at harvest
and have nothing.
12:27 A slothful man will not catch his prey, but the diligent man will
get precious wealth.
19:15 Slothfulness casts into a deep sleep, and an idle person will
12:24 The hand of the diligent will rule, while the slothful will be
put to forced labor.
15:19 The way of a sluggard is overgrown with thorns, but the path
of the upright is a level highway.
18:9 He who is slack in his work is a brother to him who destroys.
20:13 Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty; open your eyes, and
you will have plenty of bread.
24:30 I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man
24:31 and lo, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was
covered with nettles; and its stone wall was broken down.
24:32 Then I saw and considered it; I looked and received instruction.
24:33 A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands
24:34 and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an
6:6 Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise.
6:7 Without having any chief, officer, or ruler,
6:8 she prepares her food in summer, and gathers her sustenance in
6:9 How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from
6:10 A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to
6:11 and poverty will come upon you like a vagabond, and want like an
20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler; and whoever is led
astray by it is not wise.
23:19 Hear, my son, and be wise, and direct your mind in the way.
23:20 Be not among winebibbers, or among gluttonous eaters of meat;
23:21 for the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and
drowsiness will clothe a man with rags.
23:29 Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has strife? Who has
Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes?
23:30 Those who tarry long over wine, those who go to try mixed
23:31 Do not look at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the
cup and goes down smoothly.
23:32 At the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like an
23:33 Your eyes will see strange things, and your mind utter
23:34 You will be like one who lies down in the midst of the sea,
like one who lies on the top of a mast.
23:35 "They struck me," you will say, "but I was not hurt; they
beat me, but I did not feel it. When shall I awake? I will seek
27:20 Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied, and never satisfied
are the eyes of man.
28:25 A greedy man stirs up strife, but he who trusts in the LORD
will be enriched.
23:6 Do not eat the bread of a man who is stingy; do not desire his
23:7 for he is like one who is inwardly reckoning. "Eat and drink!"
he says to you; but his heart is not with you.
23:8 You will vomit up the morsels which you have eaten, and waste
your pleasant words.
11:24 One man gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another
withholds what he should give, and only suffers want.
11:25 A liberal man will be enriched, and one who waters will
himself be watered.
23:26 My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my
23:27 For a harlot is a deep pit; an adventuress is a narrow well.
23:28 She lies in wait like a robber and increases the faithless
22:14 The mouth of a loose woman is a deep pit; he with whom the
LORD is angry will fall into it.
30:20 This is the way of an adulteress: she eats, and wipes her
mouth, and says, "I have done no wrong."