Fools, fakes, and an idiot’s fun
Fools speak foolspeak1 A soft-spoken answer defuses angry people.
But a loudmouth will push their buttons.
2 When wise people talk, folks get smarter.
But fools speak the language of foolishness.
3 The LORD doesn’t miss a thing.
He’s watching everything, good and bad.
4 Soothing words can bring a person back to life.
Lies can crush your soul.
5 When your parents’ say you got it wrong, it’s foolish to ignore them.
It makes sense to correct your mistakes.
6 Good people build their assets.
Bad people can’t buy a break.
7 Wise lips spread the smart stuff.
But fools don’t have a clue.
Fakes at worship8 The LORD hates seeing bad people pretending to worship.
But he loves to hear good people pray.
9 The LORD hates to see what bad people do.
But he loves the good people for the good they do.
10 If you take the crooked path in life, you’ll pay the price.
If you refuse to fix what’s wrong, the mistakes will kill you.
11 Home of the Dead and Perdition Place hide nothing from the LORD.
The human heart can’t either.
12 Critics who dish out ridicule can’t take constructive criticism.
They ignore wise advice.
13 A happy heart cracks a smiling face.
A saddened heart breaks the spirit.
Fools tell more than they know14 Smart people hunt knowledge.
Fools just talk about what they don’t know.
15 For suffering people, it’s one rotten day after another.
For people well off, it’s parties, free food, and do it again the next day.
16 It’s better to respect the LORD and not have much money
Than to own the bank and the trouble it brings.
17 It’s better to eat veggies in a house filled with love
Than to eat steak served by someone who hates your guts.
18 Short-tempered people stir up trouble.
Patient people calm things down.
19 Lazy people walk a thorny trail through life.
Good people get to travel the highway.
20 Children with good sense make their dad and mom happy.
It’s foolish to hate your mom and dad.
An idiot’s idea of fun21 An idiot thinks it’s fun to act like a fool.
People with good sense act with good sense.
22 Your plans are headed for trouble if you don’t get advice.
Success comes from a lot of advice.
23 It’s a joy to hear the right word at the perfect moment.
What a delight, the right word at the right time.
24 Wise folks take the high road, to life.
They want nothing to do with the low road, to the grave.
25 The LORD will take away everything a proud person owns.
But he’ll stake a widow’s property line and defend it.
26 The LORD detests the filthy plans bad people make.
But kind words are pure.
27 People who make a living by cheating will bring their troubles home.
But people who reject corruption live safer lives.
Bad people pour out the crud28 Good people think about how to answer a question.
Bad people just open their mouth and let the crud pour out.
29 The LORD keeps his distance from bad folks.
But he’s close enough to good folks to hear a whispered prayer.
30 A sparkle in the eye is good for the heart.
And good news is good for the bones.
31 People who pay attention to constructive criticism,
May count themselves among the wisest.
32 You hurt yourself when you ignore correction.
But if you pay attention to the critiques, you’ll be better for it.
33 Respect for the LORD makes you wiser.
And if you want honor, learn humility first.
“Home of the Dead and Perdition Place” are paraphrases of the ancient words Sheol and Abaddon. Sheol shows up in the Old Testament referring to the grave or the realm of the dead, as in a cemetery. Abaddon means the same thing, but is literally “place of destruction” or “place of perdition.” In the Bible, this word shows up only in wisdom literature, such as Psalm 88:12 and Job 26:6.
Literally, Sheol, a word Old Testament writers used to describe the place of the dead. It is a kind of underworld where the dead are cut off from the living—and from God—and there is no coming back.
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