The Beginning of Knowledge

  1The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel:
  2To know wisdom and instruction,
   To perceive the words of understanding,
   3To receive the instruction of wisdom,
   Justice, judgment, and equity;
   4To give prudence to the simple,
   To the young man knowledge and discretion—
   5A wise man will hear and increase learning,
   And a man of understanding will attain wise counsel,
   6To understand a proverb and an enigma,
   The words of the wise and their riddles.
   7The fear of the Lordis the beginning of knowledge,
   But fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Shun Evil Counsel

  8My son, hear the instruction of your father,
   And do not forsake the law of your mother;
   9For they will be a graceful ornament on your head,
   And chains about your neck.
  10My son, if sinners entice you,
   Do not consent.
   11If they say, “Come with us,
   Let us lie in wait to shed blood;
   Let us lurk secretly for the innocent without cause;
   12Let us swallow them alive like Sheol,
   And whole, like those who go down to the Pit;
   13We shall find all kinds of precious possessions,
   We shall fill our houses with spoil;
   14Cast in your lot among us,
   Let us all have one purse”—
   15My son, do not walk in the way with them,
   Keep your foot from their path;
   16For their feet run to evil,
   And they make haste to shed blood.
   17Surely, in vain the net is spread
   In the sight of any bird;
   18But they lie in wait for their own blood,
   They lurk secretly for their own lives.
   19So are the ways of everyone who is greedy for gain;
   It takes away the life of its owners.

The Call of Wisdom

  20Wisdom calls aloud outside;
   She raises her voice in the open squares.
   21She cries out in the chief concourses,
   At the openings of the gates in the city
   She speaks her words:
   22“How long, you simple ones, will you love simplicity?
   For scorners delight in their scorning,
   And fools hate knowledge.
   23Turn at my rebuke;
   Surely I will pour out my spirit on you;
   I will make my words known to you.
   24Because I have called and you refused,
   I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded,
   25Because you disdained all my counsel,
   And would have none of my rebuke,
   26I also will laugh at your calamity;
   I will mock when your terror comes,
   27When your terror comes like a storm,
   And your destruction comes like a whirlwind,
   When distress and anguish come upon you.
  28“Then they will call on me, but I will not answer;
   They will seek me diligently, but they will not find me.
   29Because they hated knowledge
   And did not choose the fear of the Lord,
   30They would have none of my counsel
   And despised my every rebuke.
   31Therefore they shall eat the fruit of their own way,
   And be filled to the full with their own fancies.
   32For the turning away of the simple will slay them,
   And the complacency of fools will destroy them;
   33But whoever listens to me will dwell safely,
   And will be secure, without fear of evil.”