- My son, if you have made yourself responsible for your neighbour, or given your word for another,
- You are taken as in a net by the words of your mouth, the sayings of your lips have overcome you.
- Do this, my son, and make yourself free, because you have come into the power of your neighbour;
go without waiting, and make a strong request to your neighbour.
- Give no sleep to your eyes, or rest to them;
- Make yourself free, like the roe from the hand of the archer, and the bird from him who puts a net for her.
- Go to the ant, you hater of work;
give thought to her ways and be wise:
- Having no chief, overseer, or ruler,
- She gets her meat in the summer, storing up food at the time of the grain-cutting.
- How long will you be sleeping, O hater of work?
when will you get up from your sleep?
- A little sleep, a little rest, a little folding of the hands in sleep:
- Then loss will come on you like an outlaw, and your need like an armed man
- A good-for-nothing man is an evil-doer;
he goes on his way causing trouble with false words;
- Making signs with his eyes, rubbing with his feet, and giving news with his fingers;
- His mind is ever designing evil: he lets loose violent acts.
- For this cause his downfall will be sudden;
quickly he will be broken, and there will be no help for him.
- Six things are hated by the Lord;
seven things are disgusting to him:
- Eyes of pride, a false tongue, hands which take life without cause;
- A heart full of evil designs, feet which are quick in running after sin;
- A false witness, breathing out untrue words, and one who lets loose violent acts among brothers.
- My son, keep the rule of your father, and have in memory the teaching of your mother:
- Keep them ever folded in your heart, and have them hanging round your neck.
- In your walking, it will be your guide;
when you are sleeping, it will keep watch over you;
when you are awake, it will have talk with you.
- For the rule is a light, and the teaching a shining light;
and the guiding words of training are the way of life.
- They will keep you from the evil woman, from the smooth tongue of the strange woman.
- Let not your heart's desire go after her fair body;
let not her eyes take you prisoner.
- For a loose woman is looking for a cake of bread, but another man's wife goes after one's very life.
- May a man take fire to his breast without burning his clothing?
- Or may one go on lighted coals, and his feet not be burned?
- So it is with him who goes in to his neighbour's wife;
he who has anything to do with her will not go free from punishment.
- Men do not have a low opinion of a thief who takes food when he is in need of it:
- But if he is taken in the act he will have to give back seven times as much, giving up all his property which is in his house.
- He who takes another man's wife is without all sense: he who does it is the cause of destruction to his soul.
- Wounds will be his and loss of honour, and his shame may not be washed away.
- For bitter is the wrath of an angry husband;
in the day of punishment he will have no mercy.
- He will not take any payment;
and he will not make peace with you though your money offerings are increased.