25 1THESE ARE also the proverbs of Solomon, which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied: 2It is the glory of God to conceal a thing, but the glory of kings is to search out a thing. 3As the heavens for height and the earth for depth, so the hearts and minds of kings are unsearchable. 4Take away the dross from the silver, and there shall come forth [the material for] a vessel for the silversmith [to work up]. 5Take away the wicked from before the king, and his throne will be established in righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation). 6Be not forward (self-assertive and boastfully ambitious) in the presence of the king, and stand not in the place of great men; 7For better it is that it should be said to you, Come up here, than that you should be put lower in the presence of the prince, whose eyes have seen you. 8Rush not forth soon to quarrel [before magistrates or elsewhere], lest you know not what to do in the end when your neighbor has put you to shame. 9Argue your cause with your neighbor himself; discover not and disclose not another’s secret, 10Lest he who hears you revile you and bring shame upon you and your ill repute have no end. 11A word fitly spoken and in due season is like apples of gold in settings of silver. 12Like an earring or nose ring of gold or an ornament of fine gold is a wise reprover to an ear that listens and obeys. 13Like the cold of snow [brought from the mountains] in the time of harvest, so is a faithful messenger to those who send him; for he refreshes the life of his masters. 14Whoever falsely boasts of gifts [he does not give] is like clouds and wind without rain. 15By long forbearance and calmness of spirit a judge or ruler is persuaded, and soft speech breaks down the most bonelike resistance. 16Have you found [pleasure sweet like] honey? Eat only as much as is sufficient for you, lest, being filled with it, you vomit it. 17Let your foot seldom be in your neighbor’s house, lest he become tired of you and hate you. 18A man who bears false witness against his neighbor is like a heavy sledgehammer and a sword and a sharp arrow. 19Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth or a foot out of joint. 20He who sings songs to a heavy heart is like him who lays off a garment in cold weather and like vinegar upon soda. 21If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink; 22For in doing so, you will [S]heap coals of fire upon his head, and the Lord will reward you. 23The north wind brings forth rain; so does a backbiting tongue bring forth an angry countenance. 24It is better to dwell in the corner of the housetop than to share a house with a disagreeing, quarrelsome, and scolding woman. 25Like cold water to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far [home] country. 26Like a muddied fountain and a polluted spring is a righteous man who yields, falls down, and compromises his integrity before the wicked. 27It is not good to eat much honey; so for men to seek glory, their own glory, causes suffering and is not glory. 28He who has no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down and without walls.
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