1 A Good name is rather to be chosen than great riches,
And loving favor rather than silver and gold.
2 The rich and needy meet together:
The LORD is the maker of them all.
3 A prudent man foresees the mischief, and hides himself:
But the simple (= artless, guileless, or unsuspecting) pass on, and suffer for it (or, pay the penalty).
4 The reward of humility [that is] the reverence of the LORD are riches,
And honor, and life. (I.e. resurrection and eternal life. See Lev. 18;5, not necessarily long life on earth.)
5 Thorns and snares are in the way of the perverse:
He that does keep his soul shall be far from them.
6 Hedge in a child concerning his way: (I.e. straiten him in, as cattle are guided.)
And when he is old, he will not depart from it.
7 A rich one rules over poor ones,
And the borrower is servant to the lender.
8 He that sows trickery shall reap vanity:
And the rod of his anger shall fail.
9 He that has a bountiful eye shall be blessed;
For he gives of his bread to a weak one.
10 Cast out the scoffer, and contention shall go out;
Yes, strife and reproach shall cease.
11 He that loves one pure of heart,
For the grace of his lips the king shall be his friend.
12 The eyes of the LORD guard knowledge,
And He overthrows the words of the traitor.
13 The slothful man says, "There is a lion outside,
I shall be slain in the open places."
14 The mouth of apostate women is a deep pit:
He that is abhorred of the LORD shall fall therein.
15 Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child;
But the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.
16 He that oppresses a weak one to increase his riches,
And he that gives to the rich, shall surely come to want.
17 Bow down your ear, and hear the words of the wise, (Referring to the wise men by whom Solomon was surrounded, such as Ethan, Herman, Chalcol, and Darda, the son of Mahol [1 Kings 4:31].)
And apply your heart (put for thoughts and powers) to my teaching. (Note the writer's personality being other than Solomon.)
18 For it is a pleasant thing if you keep them within you;
They shall withal be fitted in your lips.
19 That your confidence may come to be in the LORD,
I have made known to you this day, even to you.
20 Have not I written for you excellent things
With counsels and knowledge,
21 That I might make you know the certainty of the sayings (or utterances) of truth;
That you might answer the words of truth to them that inquire of you?
22 Rob not a needy one, because he is poor:
; Neither oppress a wretched one in the gate:
23 For the LORD will plead their cause,
And spoil the soul of those that spoiled them.
24 Make no friendship with a master (or lord) of anger;
And with a furious man you shall not go:
25 Lest you learn his ways,
And get a snare to your soul.
26 Be not you one of them that strike hands,
Or of them that are sureties for debts.
27 If you have nothing to pay,
Why should he (i.e. the userer) take away your bed from under you?
28 Remove not the age-long boundary-stone,
Which your fathers have set.
29 See you a man diligent in his business?
He shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean ones. (I.e. men who are obscure.)