More of the top 30 rules
6 of 30, dining1When you sit down to eat a meal with a leader,
Think about where you are.
2You might as well cut your own throat
If you plan on stuffing yourself.
3And don’t go charging after the delicacies.
They’re fake food—a trick on you.
7 of 30, wealth4Don’t waste your energy on getting rich.
5You no sooner lay eyes on wealth, and it’s gone.
It grows wings.
Then it takes off like an eagle for high heaven.
8 of 30, cheapskates6Don’t eat the food of selfish cheapskates.
Don’t get tempted by their delicacies.
7They’re taking notes on you.
They might tell you, “Eat up. Drink. Cheers.”
They don’t mean it.
8You’ll get sick to your stomach when you look back on this meal.
You’ll realize your compliments were wasted on fake hospitality.
9 of 30, idiots9Don’t talk to idiots.
They’ll hate you because you sound smart.
10 of 30, orphans10Don’t move ancient property line markers.
And don’t even think of taking an orphan’s inherited land.
11Orphans have a strong Hero
Who will present a compelling defense against you.
11 of 30, listen12Pay attention to what you’re being taught.
Listen and learn.
12 of 30, spank13Discipline your children. Don’t neglect that.
A spanking won’t kill them.
14In fact, when you spank children
You’re saving their lives.
13 of 30, sense15Kids, if you get some sense inside those heads of yours,
My head might explode with happiness.
16I’ll celebrate clear down to my bones
When you start sounding like you know what you’re talking about.
14 of 30, sinners17Don’t get jealous of what bad people have.
Respect the LORD.
18Then you’ll have something better: a future.
You can count on it.
15 of 30, wine19Listen up, kids, and make smart choices.
You know the way to go. So, get going.
20Don’t overdo it on wine.
Don’t overdo it on food.
21Overdoing wine and food leads to poverty.
You doze off and end up wearing rags.
16 of 30, truth22Listen to your dad. He’s how you got here.
Don’t ignore your mom when she grows older.
23Collect truth like you’re building assets.
Add to your portfolio wisdom, insights of teachers,
And a good understanding of what you’ve learned.
24The father of a good child is one happy daddy.
A dad is glad to have a child like that.
25Go ahead, make your parents happy.
Give your mom reason to celebrate the day she gave birth to you.
17 of 30, adultery26Okay, son, pay attention.
Look at me. I want you to follow my example.
27A hooker is a hole in the ground. Dangerous.
So is a woman who cheats on her husband. She’s a narrow well.
28Women like this are robbers waiting to ambush you.
They make sinners of many men.
18 of 30, drunk29Who’s in trouble? Who’s feeling miserable?
Who’s arguing? Who’s complaining?
Who got hurt for no good reason?
Who’s got bloodshot eyes?
30Those who settle into a long drink of wine.
Those who go for more, to sample some mixed wine.
31Don’t you be eyeing up that red wine,
Sparkling in that glass.
You know how smoothly it’ll go down.
32But it’ll bite you like a snake.
And it’ll sting like poison.
33Too much wine will make you see weird things.
And you’ll say bad stuff, too.
34You’ll feel seasick, like you’re riding out an ocean storm,
Or like you’re swaying on the ship’s mast above the sails.
35You’ll get so wasted that you’ll say,
“They hit me, but it didn’t hurt.
They beat the Dickens out of me, but I didn’t feel a thing.”
When you wake up, you’ll say,
“Boy, I sure could use another drink.”
The line is more literally, “You will vomit the food you ate.” But many scholars say this is figurative. They say the idea is that when the dining guests reflect on what happened, realizing that the graciousness of the host was a lie, it will sicken them—again, figuratively and perhaps emotionally.
The Hebrew word referring to a spanking—often translated “rod”—can mean a switch, club, or staff, something you could bop a kid with. Some who argue against corporal punishment remind us that shepherds used a staff to gently nudge a straying sheep away from trouble. They didn’t club sheep like some parents wallop their rowdy kid in the candy aisle of the grocery store. People in Bible times—Jews and non-Jews alike—taught contact discipline, so to speak. We’re talking a spanking. Check out Proverbs 13:24, 19:18; 22:15; 29:15. The question for many parents of faith today is whether wise advice for farmers and herders 3,000 years ago is good advice today. Proverbs is a collection of wise sayings, some of which were picked up almost verbatim from earlier Egyptian wise sayings. With that in mind, many Bible teachers would argue this advice is best read as a snippet from history, not a rule intended for everyone everywhere until Jesus comes. Besides, they add, how many parents walloping kids in the candy aisle look loving—as opposed to looking like they’re leading the Charge of the Light Brigade. To which some parents would add that we really need to meet their kid.
Narrow wells, often dug deep in the dry ground of the Middle East, were dangerous because people could fall in them and drown or become trapped. Wells and pits are still a problem all over the world.
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