1Listen, my sons, to a father’s instruction; pay attention and gain understanding.2I give you sound learning, so do not forsake my teaching.3For I too was a son to my father, still tender, and cherished by my mother.4Then he taught me, and he said to me, “Take hold of my words with all your heart; keep my commands, and you will live.5Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or turn away from them.6Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you.7The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.8Cherish her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will honor you.9She will give you a garland to grace your head and present you with a glorious crown.”10Listen, my son, accept what I say, and the years of your life will be many.11I instruct you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths.12When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble.13Hold on to instruction, do not let it go; guard it well, for it is your life.14Do not set foot on the path of the wicked or walk in the way of evildoers.15Avoid it, do not travel on it; turn from it and go on your way.16For they cannot rest until they do evil; they are robbed of sleep till they make someone stumble.17They eat the bread of wickedness and drink the wine of violence.18The path of the righteous is like the morning sun, shining ever brighter till the full light of day.19But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble.20My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words.21Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart;22for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body.23Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.24Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips.25Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.26Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways.27Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.
English Standard Version
A Father’s Wise Instruction
1Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction, and be attentive, that you may gain insight, (Ps 34:11; Pr 1:8; Pr 2:2; Pr 5:7; Pr 7:24; Pr 8:33)2for I give you good precepts; do not forsake my teaching. (Job 11:4)3When I was a son with my father, tender, the only one in the sight of my mother, (1Ch 22:5; Zec 12:10)4he taught me and said to me, “Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments, and live. (Le 18:5; 1Ch 28:9; Pr 3:1; Pr 7:2; Isa 55:3; Eph 6:4)5Get wisdom; get insight; do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth. (Pr 2:2; Pr 4:1)6Do not forsake her, and she will keep you; love her, and she will guard you. (2Th 2:10)7The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom, and whatever you get, get insight. (Pr 1:7; Pr 4:1)8Prize her highly, and she will exalt you; she will honor you if you embrace her. (1Sa 2:30; So 2:6)9She will place on your head a graceful garland; she will bestow on you a beautiful crown.” (Pr 1:9)10Hear, my son, and accept my words, that the years of your life may be many. (Pr 2:1; Pr 3:2; Pr 4:1)11I have taught you the way of wisdom; I have led you in the paths of uprightness. (1Sa 12:23)12When you walk, your step will not be hampered, and if you run, you will not stumble. (Job 18:7; Ps 18:36; Ps 119:45; Pr 3:23)13Keep hold of instruction; do not let go; guard her, for she is your life. (Pr 3:18; Pr 4:22; Joh 1:4; 1Jo 5:12)14Do not enter the path of the wicked, and do not walk in the way of the evil. (Ps 1:1; Pr 1:15)15Avoid it; do not go on it; turn away from it and pass on.16For they cannot sleep unless they have done wrong; they are robbed of sleep unless they have made someone stumble. (Ps 36:4)17For they eat the bread of wickedness and drink the wine of violence. (Am 2:8)18But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day. (2Sa 23:4; Job 11:17; Job 22:28; Ps 84:7; Ps 97:11; Isa 60:3; Isa 62:1; Da 12:3; 1Jo 3:2)19The way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know over what they stumble. (1Sa 2:9; Job 18:5; Isa 59:9; Jer 23:12; Mt 6:23; Joh 11:10; Joh 12:35; 1Jo 2:10)20My son, be attentive to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. (Pr 4:10)21Let them not escape from your sight; keep them within your heart. (Pr 2:1; Pr 3:21)22For they are life to those who find them, and healing to all their flesh. (De 32:47; Pr 4:13; Pr 8:35; Pr 21:21; 1Ti 4:8)23Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life. (Ps 16:11; Mt 12:35)24Put away from you crooked speech, and put devious talk far from you. (Pr 2:15; Pr 6:12)25Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. (Heb 12:2)26Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. (Ps 119:5; Pr 5:6; Pr 5:21; Heb 12:13)27Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil. (De 5:32; De 28:14; Jos 1:7; 1Ki 15:5)