Scripture quotations are from the Lexham English Bible. Copyright 2012 Logos Bible Software. Lexham is a registered trademark of Logos Bible Software.
My child, if you have pledged to your neighbor,
if you have bound yourself to the stranger,
if you are snared by the sayings of your mouth,
if you are caught by the sayings of your mouth,
do this, then, my child, and save yourself,
for you have come into the palm of your neighbor’s hand:
Go, humble yourself, plead with your neighbor.
Do not give sleep to your eyes,
or slumber to your eyelids.
Save yourself like a gazelle from a hand,
or like a bird from the hand of a fowler.
Go to the ant, lazy!
Consider its ways and be wise.
It has no chief,
officer, or ruler.
In the summer, it prepares its food;
in the harvest, it gathers its sustenance.
How long will you lie down, lazy?
When will you rise up from your sleep?
A little sleep, a little slumber,
a little folding of the hands for rest—
like a robber shall your poverty come,
and what you lack like an armed man.
A worthless man, an evil man,
goes around with deceitful speech.
Winking in his eye, shuffling in his foot,
pointing in his fingers,
perversion in his heart, he devises evil;
at all times he will send out discord.
Upon such a man, suddenly shall his calamity come;
in a moment he will be damaged and there is no healing.
There are six things Yahweh hates,
and seven things are abominations of his soul:
haughty eyes, a lying tongue,
and hands that shed innocent blood,
a devising heart, plans of deception,
feet that hurry to run to evil,
a false witness who breathes lies
and sends out discord between brothers.
My child, keep the commandment of your father,
and do not disregard the instruction of your mother.
Bind them on your heart continually;
tie them upon your neck.
When you walk, she will lead you,
When you lie down, she will watch over you,
and when you awake, she will converse with you.
For like a lamp is a commandment, and instruction is light,
and the way of life is the reproof of discipline,
in order to preserve you from an evil woman,
from the smoothness of the tongue of an adulteress.
Do not desire her beauty in your heart;
may she not capture you with her eyelashes.
For the price of a woman, a prostitute, is the price of a loaf of bread,
but the woman belonging to a man hunts precious life.
Can a man carry fire in his lap,
and his clothes not burn?
If a man walks upon the hot coals,
will his feet not be burned?
Thus, he who goes to the wife of his neighbor,
any who touches her shall not go unpunished.
People do not despise a thief when he steals
to fill himself when he is hungry.
But if he is found, he will pay sevenfold,
every possession of his house he shall give.
He who commits adultery with a woman lacks sense,
he destroys himself who does it.
A wound and dishonor he will find,
and his disgrace will not be wiped out.
For jealousy is the fury of a husband,
and he will not show restraint on the day of revenge.
He will not accept any compensation,
and he will not be willing, though the bribe is large.
My child, guard my sayings;
store my commandments with you.
Keep my commands and live,
and my teaching like the apple of your eye.
Bind them on your fingers;
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Say to wisdom, "you are my sister,"
and you shall call insight, "intimate friend."
In order to guard yourself from an adulteress,
from the foreigner who makes her words smooth.
For at the window of my house,
through my lattice, I looked down.
And I saw among the simple,
I observed among the youth,
a young man lacking sense,
passing on the street at her corner,
and he takes the road to her house,
at twilight, at the day’s evening,
in the midst of night and the darkness.
Then behold! A woman comes to meet him
with the garment of a prostitute and a secret heart.
She is loud and stubborn;
her feet do not stay at her house.
Now in the street, now in the square,
at every corner she lies in wait.
She took hold of him and kissed him.
Her face was impudent, and she said to him,
"Sacrifices of peace offerings are upon me;
today I completed my vows.
So I have come out to meet you,
to seek your face, and I have found you.
With coverings I have adorned my couch,
spreads of the linen of Egypt;
I have perfumed my bed with myrrh,
aloes, and cinnamon.
Come, let us take our fill of love making,
until the morning let us delight in love.
For there is no man in his home;
he has gone on a long journey.
The bag of money he took in his hand,
for on the day of the full moon he will come home."
She persuades him with the greatness of her teachings;
with her smooth lips she compels him.
He goes after her suddenly;
like an ox to the slaughter he goes,
and like a stag to the instruction of a fool,
until an arrow pierces his entrails,
like a bird rushing into a snare,
but he does not know that it will cost him his life.
And now, my children, listen to me,
and be attentive to the sayings of my mouth.
May your heart not turn aside to her ways;
do not stray into her path.
For many slain she has laid low,
and countless are all of her killings.
The ways of Sheol are her house,
descending to chambers of death.
A Shiggaion of David which he sang to Yahweh
on account of Cush, a Benjaminite.
O Yahweh, my God, in you I have taken refuge.
Save me from all who pursue me, and deliver me.
Or else he will tear me apart like a lion,
ripping to pieces, with none to deliver.
O Yahweh, my God, if I have done this,
if there is wrong in my hands,
if I have repaid my ally with harm,
or if I have plundered my enemy without cause,
let the enemy of my soul pursue,
and overtake and trample my life into the ground,
and lay my honor in the dust. Selah
Rise up, O Yahweh, in your anger,
and lift yourself up against the wrath of my oppressors,
and awake for me,
since you have commanded judgment.
And let the assembly of peoples surround you,
and over it return on high.
Yahweh judges the nations.
O Yahweh, vindicate me
according to my innocence and according to my integrity within me.
Let the evil of the wicked come to an end,
but establish the righteous,
and test the hearts and innermost being, O righteous God.
My shield is with God
who saves the upright of heart.
God is a righteous judge,
and a God who has indignation every day.
If he does not repent, he will sharpen his sword.
He has bent his bow and he has strung it.
And he has prepared for him weapons of death.
He has made his arrows fiery shafts.
See, he travails with evil.
He is pregnant with trouble,
and he gives birth to deception.
He makes a pit and digs it out,
then falls in the trap he has made.
His trouble comes back on his head,
and his violence comes down on his skull.
I will thank Yahweh according to his righteousness,
and I will sing praise to the name of Yahweh, the Most High.
Therefore I say, God has not rejected his people, has he? May it never be! For I also am an Israelite, from the descendants of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. God has not rejected his people, whom he foreknew! Or do you not know, in the passage about Elijah, what the scripture says—how he appeals to God against Israel? "Lord, they have killed your prophets, they have torn down your altars, and I alone am left, and they are seeking my life!" But what does the divine response say to him? "I have left for myself seven thousand people who have not bent the knee to Baal." So in this way also at the present time, there is a remnant selected by grace. But if by grace, it is no longer by works, for otherwise grace would no longer be grace.
What then? What Israel was searching for, this it did not obtain. But the elect obtained it, and the rest were hardened, just as it is written,
"God gave them a spirit of stupor,
eyes that do not see and ears that do not hear,
until this very day."
And David says,
"Let their table become a snare and a trap,
and a cause for stumbling and a retribution to them;
let their eyes be darkened so that they do not see,
and cause their backs to bend continually."
I say then, they did not stumble so that they fell, did they? May it never be! But by their trespass, salvation has come to the Gentiles, in order to provoke them to jealousy. And if their trespass means riches for the world and their loss means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their fullness mean?
Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Therefore, inasmuch as I am apostle to the Gentiles, I promote my ministry, if somehow I may provoke my people to jealousy and save some of them. For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean except life from the dead? Now if the first fruits are holy, so also is the whole batch of dough, and if the root is holy, so also are the branches.
Now if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although you were a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them and became a sharer of the root of the olive tree’s richness, do not boast against the branches. But if you boast against them, you do not support the root, but the root supports you. Then you will say, "Branches were broken off in order that I could be grafted in." Well said! They were broken off because of unbelief, but you stand firm because of faith. Do not think arrogant thoughts, but be afraid. For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. See, then, the kindness and severity of God: severity upon those who have fallen, but upon you the kindness of God—if you continue in his kindness, for otherwise you also will be cut off. And those also, if they do not persist in unbelief, will be grafted in, because God is able to graft them in again. For if you were cut off from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these who are natural branches be grafted into their own olive tree?
For I do not want you to be ignorant, brothers, of this mystery, so that you will not be wise in your own sight, that a partial hardening has happened to Israel, until the full number of the Gentiles has come in, and so all Israel will be saved, just as it is written,
"The deliverer will come out of Zion;
he will turn away ungodliness from Jacob.
And this is the covenant from me with them
when I take away their sins."
With respect to the gospel, they are enemies for your sake, but with respect to election, they are dearly loved for the sake of the fathers. For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. For just as you formerly were disobedient to God, but now have been shown mercy because of the disobedience of these, so also these have now been disobedient for your mercy, in order that they also may now be shown mercy. For God confined them all in disobedience, in order that he could have mercy on them all.
Oh, the depth of the riches
and the wisdom and the knowledge of God!
How unsearchable are his judgments
and how incomprehensible are his ways!
"For who has known the mind of the Lord,
or who has been his counselor?
Or who has given in advance to him,
and it will be paid back to him?"
For from him and through him and to him are all things.
To him be glory for eternity! Amen.