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The former chapters were but by way of preface to recommend wiat follows to our practice. Here begin those choice and pithy sentences, called proverbs, and ovhich are 100 unconnected to admit of refleco tions on the contents of each chapter.


1 THE proverbs of Solomon. A wise son maketh a glad

father: but a foolish son [is] the heaviness of his mother. 2 Treasures of wickedness, that is, the treasures of wicked men,

especially ihose golten by wickedness, profit nothing : but right

eousness delivereth from death, from the judgments consequent 3 upon wickedness and from eternal death. The Lord will not

suffer the soul of the righteous to famish: but he casteth away

the substance of the wicked ; he will stize it as the property of 4. an enemy and make a spoil of it, He becometh poor that dealeth

[with] a slack, that is, witli an idle and deceitful hand : but the

hand of the diligent maketh rich, both as to the world and the 5 soul. He that gathereth in summer, - who improves his opportu

nities, [is] a wise son : [but) he that sleepeth in harvest [is] a

son that causeth shame ; he loses the benefic he might enjoy, and 6 will be a disgrace to his friends. Blessings (are) upon the head

of the just : but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked; an

allusion to laying on the hand in blessing, and covering the face of a 7 criminal when executed. The memory of the just [is] blessed ;

though obscure while he lives, though slandered, yet shull he be

spoken of with praise : but the name of the wicked shall rot; it 8 shall survive them, but it shall be regarded with abhorrence. The

wise in heart will receive commandments ; esteem it a firivilige and a favour to be taught : but a prating fool shall fall ; one who

loves to hear himself talk shall fall into troubles and be undone. 9 He that walketh uprightly walketh surely ; he is casy and happy

in the divine approbation, and the consciousness of his own integris

ty; but he that perverteth his ways, who useth indirect methods, 10 shall be known and discovered. He that winketh with the eye,

who gives signs to his accomplices to do a man mischief while he is

speaking him fair, causeth sorrow: but a prating fool shall fall. 11 The mouth of a righteous (man is) a well of life ; vllolesome,

instructive words spring up as naturally as good water in a well,

refreshing and strengthening cll about him: but violence covereth 12 the mouth of the wicked. Hatred stirreth up strifes; mulicious,

ill natured people, by slander and telebcaring raise disi urbances, and make people quarrel about trifler: but love covereth all

sins ; overlooks and conceais, or extenuales and makes the best of 13 them. In the lips of him that hath understanding wisdom is

found ; he shows it by his speech : but a rod [is] for the back of

him that is void of understanding ; nothing but correction will 14 teach a fool his duty. Wise (men) lay up knowledge, continually

ani sufely, as a treasure : but the mouth of the foolish [is] near destruction, by venting unseasonably all he knows, to his own mis

15 chief. The rich man's wealth (is) his strong city ; he thinks it

will defend him against many of the evils of life : the destruction of the poor [is] their poverty ; wicked men take advantage to

oppress and ruin thein ; or, poverty fills them with fear and dese 16 pair, and so is the cause of their ruin. The labour of the right

eous (tendeth) to life; wisdom and goodness make a man's life a blessing 10 himself and others : the fruit of the wicked to sin ;

wicked men abuse it, and turn it into a curse, inuke ir an occasion 17 of guilt and ruin. He [is in] the way of life that keepeth in

struction ; but he that refuseth reproof, when offered to him, 18 erreth, wandere out of the way of life. He that hideth hatred

(with) lying or flattering lips, and he that uttereth a slander, iş 19 a fool; shows a bad heari, however wise he may seem. In the

multitude of words there wanteth not sin ; a man that is talkative will often sin : but he that refraineth his lips, who hath

prudence to consider when and how and to whom he speaks, [is] 20 wise. The tongue of the just [is as) choice silver ; when he

speaks in his common and ordinary manner what he utlers is of weight and worth: the heart of the wicked [is] little worth, con

sequently his speech is 80, even when he has studied what to say. 21 The lips of the righteous feed many, make others wise : but fools

die for want of wisdom ; they lose their very lives and their eternal 22 happiness too. The blessing of the LORD on the hand of the diligentia

it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it ; ill gotten riches

are attended with regret, cares, and discontent, an evil conscience, 23 and star of discovery and a future reckoning. [It is) as sport to

a sool to do mischief; it is a pleasure to him, he does it with a gay air and without reflection : but a man of understanding hath wis

dom ; or, so is wisdom to a man of understanding, he taketh pleas24 ure in it. The fear of the wicked, it shall come upon him ; he

hath his fears, but not more than he has reason for ; let his imagination be ever so lively, all that he fears shall come upon him : but the desire of the righteous shall be granted, that is, his

grand, leading desire, the favour of God and eternal hanpiness. 25 As the whirlwind passeth, so [is] the wicked no [more;) though

he may for a while make a great bustle, like a whirlwind : but the

righteous [is] an everlasting foundation ; his hope and happiness 26 is in the divine righteousness and faithfulness. As vinegar to the

teeth, and as smoke to the eyes, which is troublesome and painful, so (is) the sluggard to them that send him ; he neither delivers

his message faithfully, performs his buriness exactly, nor hastens 27 back again. The fear of the Lord prolongeth days : but the

years of the wicked shall be shortened, niturally and judicially. 28 The hope of the righteous (shall be) gladness; shall be answer.

ed, and occasion joy: but the expectation of the wicked shall

perish ; shall be disappointed, and give so much the more sorrow 29 on that account. The way of the LORD [is] strength to the np.

right, that' gors on securely and courageously ; his work is easy

and delightful : but destruction shall be) to the workers of in30 iquity. The righteous shall never be removed; hie sout shall be

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kepe in peace, and his happiness be secure : but the wicked shall 31 not inhabit the earth. The mouth of the just bringeth forthi

wisdom : but the froward tongue shall be cut out, or cut off. 32 The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable ; he knows

the proper time and manner of speaking, what is acceptable to men, and not dis[:leasing to God; he studies to please as far as is consistent wi!h truth and friendship : but the mouth of the wicked [speaketh] frowardness ; he loves to vent his own spleen, though very disiasteful to others. Let us avoid this, and remember, that these several maxims relating to the government of the longue, show its importance, and how curefully it should be attended to.


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culiarly abominable, as it is cheating under a pretence of 2 doing right : but a just weight [is] his delight. (When! pride

cometh, then cometh shame, being shameful in itself, and exposes them to shame : but with the lowly (is) wisdom; which is pleas.

ing to God and man, and makes them easy and comfortable in them3 selves. The integrity of the upright shall guide them : but the

perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them : if a man comes to a resolution to preserve strict integrily, that will direct him and make his way plain ; it is easy to determine what is fair and honourable. But when the question is, What mean, dishonourable things may be done without discovery ? a scene is open for

perplexity; and men of great subtilty and refinement are oftenest 4 entangled, exposed, and ruined. Riches profit not in the day of

wrath : but righteousness delivereth from death ; from second Ś death, and makes the first comfortable. The righteousness of

the perfect shall direct his way, so as to bring all his designs and

endeavours to a hanny issue : but the wicked shall fall by his 6 own wickedness. The righteousness of the upright shall deliver

them out of that sin and misery they might fall into : but trans

gressors shall be taken in (their own) naughtiness, and irrecor7 erably destroyed. When a wicked man dieth, (his] expectation

shall perish ; all his hope of pleasure and happiness in temporal things, and his expectation of escaping eternal misery: and the

hope of unjust (men) perisheth, while the expectation of a good 8 man is answered and outdone. The righteous is delivered out of

trouble, and the wicked cometh in his stead, to that misery he 9 had formerly occasioned 10 the righteous. An hypocrite with (his]

mouth destroyeth his neighbour, by fiattering and deceiving him ;

but through knowledge, or prudence, shall the just be delivered 10 from his snares. When it goeth well with the righteous, the

city rejoiceth: and when the wicked perish, [there is) shouting; men have such a regard for their own interest, and such a sense of what is decent and right, thai ikey rejoice both in the one

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11 and in the other. By the blessing of the upright the city is ex

alted; by their prayers, counsels, and admonitions : but it is

overthrown by the mouth of the wicked ; by their blasphemy,
12 perverse opposition, and evil communications. He that is void of

wisdom despiseth his neighbour ; whatever a man thinks, ir ig
foolish in him to speak contemptuously of his neighbour, because
it is provoking him, and he may return it : but a man of under-

standing holdeth his peace ; if he can say no good, he will say no
13 harm. A talebearer revealeth secrets ; pries into the secrets of

families, and carries stories from one to another : but he that is of
a faithful spirit concealeth the matter ; an upright man conceal-

eth that which may be hurtful to another, though he has no express
14 charge about it. Where no counsel [is,] the people fall ; they

are influenced by private interest, and act rashly : but in the 15 multitude of counsellors (there is) safety. He that is surety

for a stranger shall smart (for it ;] he does not know his circum

stances, and therefore he is in danger : and he that hateth sureti-
16 ship is sure ; it is most prudent to avoid it. A gracious woman

retaineth honour : and strong (men) retain riches ; she is at
careful of her reputation, as a strong man of his riches ; or, will

as effectually secure a good reputation, as a strong man his wealth.
17 The merciful man doeth good to his own soul ; while he doet

good 10 others, he equally does good to himself ; such is the connec-
tion between man and man: but she that is) cruel troubleth his
own fiesh ; his own envy and malice tear him to pieces.
refer to the pleasure which arises from the exercise of benevolent,

affections, and the anguish and remorse which are inseparable from
18 cruelty. The wicked worketh a deceitful work; that which will

deceive his expectations : but to him that soweth righteousness

[shall be) a sure reward ; though it may tarry it will not disap19 point him. As righteousness (tendeth] to life, in its natural con

sequence, so he that pursueth evil (pursueth it) to his own death. 20 They that are of a froward heart, persons of double dealing,

who are perverse and ill natured, [are) abomination to the LORD:

but (such as are] upright in (their) way (are] his delight. 21 (Though) hand (join) in hand, though they forma potent alliance,

and strengthen and countenance one another, the wicked shall not

be unpunished : but the seed of the righteous shall be delivered
22 from their confederacies, by the help of God alone. (As) a jewel

of gold in a swine's snout, which is more taken notice of, and more
desprised on that account, (so is) a fair woman which is without

discretion ; without taste, without judging what is right and
23 wrong, and not considering consequences. The desire of the

righteous [is] only good ; either to do or get good, and i: slall be
granted them : (but] the expectation of the wicked [is] wrath ;

whatsoever happiness they promise themselves, the issue will be
24 wrath and destruction. There is that scattereth, and yet in-

creaseth; and (there is] that withholdeth more than is meet,
not firoviding for their families, sparing necessary expenses in
trade, and showing a covetous temper in every thing, but (it tend,

This may


eth) to poverty ; by a strange train of providences they are free 25 quently beggared. The liberal soul shall be made fat, comforia,

ble and happy : and he that watereth shall be watered also

himself; it shall rain upon him blessings as copiously as showers. 26 He that withholdeth corn in dear times, in hopes of a higher mar

hel, and will not sell it at a reasonable price, and for a moderate profit, the people shall curse him : but blessing from Goll, as

well as his neighbour, [shall be) upon the head of him that selle 27 eth [it.] He that diligently seeketh good, or to do gcod, p:o:

cureth favour from God and man: but he that seeketh mischief,

it shall come unto him ; le draws upon himself the evils he des 28 signed against others. He that trusteth in his riches shall fall

like a withered leaf : but the righteous shall fourish as a branch ; 29 shall grow stronger and stronger, and be more fruitful. He that

troubleth his own house, who ruins his family by estravagance, or makes it iinhappy by ill nature, shall inherit the wind; he shall have nothing but air to live upon; or, he shall raise a dreadful storm which shall fall ufion his own head; and the fool (shall be] servant unto the wise of heart ; those who are foolisi, shall be brough! so low, that they shall be glad to become servants to idcse

who set out in life wiih less than themselves, but by prudence and 30 diligence have risen in the world. The fruit of the righteous (is) a

tree of life, is the means of much good ; and he that winneth souls

to God and goodness, [is] wise, though his method way not be 80* 31 judicious as that of ouers. Behold, the righteous shall be re,

compensed in the earl: much more the wicked and the sinner sholl be corrected for their sins, in this world, or in another. See how much religion consists in justice, humanity, good temper, and zral to do good. May we not only hear these things, but apply our minds to do them.


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1 HOSO loveth instruction loveth knowledge ; is in the

way to be avise and goud : but he that hateth reproof 2 [is] brutish ; wanis sense as well as grace. A good [man] obe

taneth favour of the LORD : but a man of wicked devices will 3 he condemn. A man shall noi be established by wickedness :

but the root of the righteous shall not be moved ; he shall be 4 established by righteousness. A virtuous woman, a diligent, active

apriman, as the word signifies, who anplies close to family business, [is] a crown to her husband, an ornament a:d a blessing in him : but she that maketh ashamed [is] as rottenness in his bones ;

though he does not show it publicly, it is a continual and incurable 5 vezation to him. The thoughts of the righteous (are) right;

it is his constant purpose to drai justly with God and man : [but) 6 the counsels of the wicked (are) carried on by deceit. The

words of the wicked (are) to lie in wait for blood ; to corrupt

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