3 1MY SON, forget not my law or teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments; 2For length of days and years of a life [worth living] and tranquility [inward and outward and continuing through old age till death], these shall they add to you. 3Let not mercy and kindness [shutting out all hatred and selfishness] and truth [shutting out all deliberate hypocrisy or falsehood] forsake you; bind them about your neck, write them upon the tablet of your heart. 4So shall you find favor, good understanding, and high esteem in the sight [or judgment] of God and man. 5Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. 6In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths. 7Be not wise in your own eyes; reverently fear and worship the Lord and turn [entirely] away from evil. 8It shall be health to your nerves and sinews, and marrow and moistening to your bones. 9Honor the Lord with your capital and sufficiency [from righteous labors] and with the firstfruits of all your income; 10So shall your storage places be filled with plenty, and your vats shall be overflowing with new wine. 11My son, do not despise or shrink from the chastening of the Lord [His correction by punishment or by subjection to suffering or trial]; neither be weary of or impatient about or loathe or abhor His reproof, 12For whom the Lord loves He corrects, even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights. 13Happy (blessed, fortunate, enviable) is the man who finds skillful and godly Wisdom, and the man who gets understanding [drawing it forth from God’s Word and life’s experiences], 14For the gaining of it is better than the gaining of silver, and the profit of it better than fine gold. 15Skillful and godly [F]Wisdom is more precious than rubies; and nothing you can wish for is to be compared to her. 16Length of days is in her right hand, and in her left hand are riches and honor. 17Her ways are highways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. 18She is a tree of life to those who lay hold on her; and happy (blessed, fortunate, to be envied) is everyone who holds her fast. 19The Lord by skillful and godly Wisdom has founded the earth; by understanding He has established the heavens. 20By His knowledge the deeps were broken up, and the skies distill the dew. 21My son, let them not escape from your sight, but keep sound and godly Wisdom and discretion, 22And they will be life to your inner self, and a gracious ornament to your neck (your outer self). 23Then you will walk in your way securely and in confident trust, and you shall not dash your foot or stumble. 24When you lie down, you shall not be afraid; yes, you shall lie down, and your sleep shall be sweet. 25Be not afraid of sudden terror and panic, nor of the stormy blast or the storm and ruin of the wicked when it comes [for you will be guiltless], 26For the Lord shall be your confidence, firm and strong, and shall keep your foot from being caught [in a trap or some hidden danger]. 27Withhold not good from those to whom it is due [its rightful owners], when it is in the power of your hand to do it. 28Do not say to your neighbor, Go, and come again; and tomorrow I will give it--when you have it with you. 29Do not contrive or dig up or cultivate evil against your neighbor, who dwells trustingly and confidently beside you. 30Contend not with a man for no reason--when he has done you no wrong. 31Do not resentfully envy and be jealous of an unscrupulous, grasping man, and choose none of his ways. 32For the perverse are an abomination [extremely disgusting and detestable] to the Lord; but His confidential communion and secret counsel are with the [uncompromisingly] righteous (those who are upright and in right standing with Him). 33The curse of the Lord is in and on the house of the wicked, but He declares blessed (joyful and favored with blessings) the home of the just and consistently righteous. 34Though He scoffs at the scoffers and scorns the scorners, yet He gives His undeserved favor to the low [in rank], the humble, and the afflicted. 35The wise shall inherit glory (all honor and good) but shame is the highest rank conferred on [self-confident] fools.
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