1It is better to eat a dry crust of bread in peace and quiet
than to eat a big dinner in a house full of fighting.
2A wise servant will rule over a shameful child.
He will be given part of the property as if he were a family member.
3Fire tests silver, and heat tests gold.
But the Lord tests our hearts.
4Evil people listen to lies.
Lying people listen to evil.
5Anyone who laughs at those who are poor makes fun of their Maker.
Anyone who is happy when others suffer will be punished.
6Grandchildren are like a crown to older people.
And children are proud of their parents.
7Fancy words don’t belong in the mouths of ungodly fools.
And lies certainly don’t belong in the mouths of rulers!
8Those who give money think it will buy them favors.
They think that no matter where they turn, they will succeed.
9Whoever wants to show love forgives a wrong.
But those who talk about it separate close friends.
10A person who understands what is right learns more from just a warning
than a foolish person learns from 100 strokes with a whip.
11An evil person tries to keep others from obeying God.
The messenger of death will be sent against them.
12It is better to meet a bear whose cubs have been stolen
than to meet a foolish person who is acting foolishly.
13Evil will never leave the house
of anyone who pays back evil for good.
14Starting to argue is like making a crack in a dam.
So drop the matter before a fight breaks out.
15The Lord hates two things.
He hates it when the guilty are set free.
He also hates it when those who aren’t guilty are punished.
16Why should a foolish person try to buy wisdom?
They are not even able to understand it.
17A friend loves at all times.
They are there to help when trouble comes.
18A person who has no sense agrees to pay what other people owe.
It isn’t wise to promise to pay other people’s bills.
19The one who loves to argue loves to sin.
The one who builds a high gate is just asking to be destroyed.
20If your heart is twisted, you won’t succeed.
If your tongue tells lies, you will get into trouble.
21It is sad to have a foolish child.
The parents of a godless fool have no joy.
22A cheerful heart makes you healthy.
But a broken spirit dries you up.
23Anyone who does wrong accepts favors in secret.
Then they turn what is right into what is wrong.
24Anyone who understands what is right keeps wisdom in view.
But the eyes of a foolish person look everywhere else.
25A foolish child makes his father sad
and his mother sorry.
26It isn’t good to fine those who aren’t guilty.
So it certainly isn’t good to whip officials just because they are honest.
27Anyone who has knowledge controls their words.
Anyone who has understanding is not easily upset.
28We think even foolish people are wise if they keep silent.
We think they understand what is right if they control their tongues.