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Proverbs 4

Proverbs 4

A Father’s Wise Instruction

[1] Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction,
and be attentive, that you may gain insight,
[2] for I give you good precepts;
do not forsake my teaching.
[3] When I was a son with my father,
tender, the only one in the sight of my mother,
[4] he taught me and said to me,
“Let your heart hold fast my words;
keep my commandments, and live.
[5] Get wisdom; get insight;
do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth.
[6] Do not forsake her, and she will keep you;
love her, and she will guard you.
[7] The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom,
and whatever you get, get insight.
[8] Prize her highly, and she will exalt you;
she will honor you if you embrace her.
[9] She will place on your head a graceful garland;
she will bestow on you a beautiful crown.”

[10] Hear, my son, and accept my words,
that the years of your life may be many.
[11] I have taught you the way of wisdom;
I have led you in the paths of uprightness.
[12] When you walk, your step will not be hampered,
and if you run, you will not stumble.
[13] Keep hold of instruction; do not let go;
guard her, for she is your life.
[14] Do not enter the path of the wicked,
and do not walk in the way of the evil.
[15] Avoid it; do not go on it;
turn away from it and pass on.
[16] For they cannot sleep unless they have done wrong;
they are robbed of sleep unless they have made someone stumble.
[17] For they eat the bread of wickedness
and drink the wine of violence.
[18] But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn,
which shines brighter and brighter until full day.
[19] The way of the wicked is like deep darkness;
they do not know over what they stumble.

[20] My son, be attentive to my words;
incline your ear to my sayings.
[21] Let them not escape from your sight;
keep them within your heart.
[22] For they are life to those who find them,
and healing to all their flesh.
[23] Keep your heart with all vigilance,
for from it flow the springs of life.
[24] Put away from you crooked speech,
and put devious talk far from you.
[25] Let your eyes look directly forward,
and your gaze be straight before you.
[26] Ponder the path of your feet;
then all your ways will be sure.
[27] Do not swerve to the right or to the left;
turn your foot away from evil. (ESV)