Tag Archives: understanding

Proverbs 28 (The Message MSG)

If You Desert God’s Law

1 The wicked are edgy with guilt, ready to run off
    even when no one’s after them;
Honest people are relaxed and confident,
    bold as lions.

When the country is in chaos,
    everybody has a plan to fix it—
But it takes a leader of real understanding
    to straighten things out.

Huh.

The wicked who oppress the poor
    are like a hailstorm that beats down the harvest.

If you desert God’s law, you’re free to embrace depravity;
    if you love God’s law, you fight for it tooth and nail.

Justice makes no sense to the evilminded;
    those who seek God know it inside and out.

It’s better to be poor and direct
    than rich and crooked.

Practice God’s law—get a reputation for wisdom;
    hang out with a loose crowd—embarrass your family.

Get as rich as you want
    through cheating and extortion,
But eventually some friend of the poor
    is going to give it all back to them.

God has no use for the prayers
    of the people who won’t listen to him.

Wow. I could say more and have had thoughts similar. Wow is all I’ll say.

10 Lead good people down a wrong path
    and you’ll come to a bad end;
    do good and you’ll be rewarded for it.

11 The rich think they know it all,
    but the poor can see right through them.

12 When good people are promoted, everything is great,
    but when the bad are in charge, watch out!

13 You can’t whitewash your sins and get by with it;
    you find mercy by admitting and leaving them.

14 A tenderhearted person lives a blessed life;
    a hardhearted person lives a hard life.

15 Lions roar and bears charge—
    and the wicked lord it over the poor.

16 Among leaders who lack insight, abuse abounds,
    but for one who hates corruption, the future is bright.

17 A murderer haunted by guilt
    is doomed—there’s no helping him.

18 Walk straight—live well and be saved;
    a devious life is a doomed life.

Doing Great Harm in Seemingly Harmless Ways

19 Work your garden—you’ll end up with plenty of food;
    play and party—you’ll end up with an empty plate.

20 Committed and persistent work pays off;
    get-rich-quick schemes are ripoffs.

21 Playing favorites is always a bad thing;
    you can do great harm in seemingly harmless ways.

Man.

22 A miser in a hurry to get rich
    doesn’t know that he’ll end up broke.

23 In the end, serious reprimand is appreciated
    far more than bootlicking flattery.

24 Anyone who robs father and mother
    and says, “So, what’s wrong with that?”
    is worse than a pirate.

25 A grasping person stirs up trouble,
    but trust in God brings a sense of well-being.

26 If you think you know it all, you’re a fool for sure;
    real survivors learn wisdom from others.

27 Be generous to the poor—you’ll never go hungry;
    shut your eyes to their needs, and run a gauntlet of curses.

28 When corruption takes over, good people go underground,
    but when the crooks are thrown out, it’s safe to come out.

Proverbs 25 (The Message MSG)

Further Wise Sayings of Solomon

The Right Word at the Right Time

1 There are also these proverbs of Solomon,
    collected by scribes of Hezekiah, king of Judah.

God delights in concealing things;
    scientists delight in discovering things.

Like the horizons for breadth and the ocean for depth,
    the understanding of a good leader is broad and deep.

4-5 Remove impurities from the silver
    and the silversmith can craft a fine chalice;
Remove the wicked from leadership
    and authority will be credible and God-honoring.

6-7 Don’t work yourself into the spotlight;
    don’t push your way into the place of prominence.
It’s better to be promoted to a place of honor
    than face humiliation by being demoted.

Don’t jump to conclusions—there may be
    a perfectly good explanation for what you just saw.

9-10 In the heat of an argument,
    don’t betray confidences;
Word is sure to get around,
    and no one will trust you.

11-12 The right word at the right time
    is like a custom-made piece of jewelry,
And a wise friend’s timely reprimand
    is like a gold ring slipped on your finger.

13 Reliable friends who do what they say
    are like cool drinks in sweltering heat—refreshing!

14 Like billowing clouds that bring no rain
    is the person who talks big but never produces.

This is for me.

15 Patient persistence pierces through indifference;
    gentle speech breaks down rigid defenses.

And this too. Both timely for different reasons.

A Person Without Self-Control

16-17 When you’re given a box of candy, don’t gulp it all down;
    eat too much chocolate and you’ll make yourself sick;
And when you find a friend, don’t outwear your welcome;
    show up at all hours and he’ll soon get fed up.

18 Anyone who tells lies against the neighbors
    in court or on the street is a loose cannon.

19 Trusting a double-crosser when you’re in trouble
    is like biting down on an abscessed tooth.

20 Singing light songs to the heavyhearted
    is like pouring salt in their wounds.

Eek. Ouch.

21-22 If you see your enemy hungry, go buy him lunch;
    if he’s thirsty, bring him a drink.
Your generosity will surprise him with goodness,
    and God will look after you.

23 A north wind brings stormy weather,
    and a gossipy tongue stormy looks.

24 Better to live alone in a tumbledown shack
    than share a mansion with a nagging spouse.

25 Like a cool drink of water when you’re worn out and weary
    is a letter from a long-lost friend.

26 A good person who gives in to a bad person
    is a muddied spring, a polluted well.

27 It’s not smart to stuff yourself with sweets,
    nor is glory piled on glory good for you.

28 A person without self-control
    is like a house with its doors and windows knocked out.

Proverbs 24 (The Message MSG)

Intelligence Outranks Muscle

1-2 Don’t envy bad people;
    don’t even want to be around them.
All they think about is causing a disturbance;
    all they talk about is making trouble.

3-4 It takes wisdom to build a house,
    and understanding to set it on a firm foundation;
It takes knowledge to furnish its rooms
    with fine furniture and beautiful draperies.

5-6 It’s better to be wise than strong;
    intelligence outranks muscle any day.
Strategic planning is the key to warfare;

Wise conversation is way over the head of fools;
    in a serious discussion they haven’t a clue.

8-9 The person who’s always cooking up some evil
    soon gets a reputation as prince of rogues.
Fools incubate sin;
    cynics desecrate beauty.

Rescue the Perishing

10 If you fall to pieces in a crisis,
    there wasn’t much to you in the first place.

11-12 Rescue the perishing;
    don’t hesitate to step in and help.
If you say, “Hey, that’s none of my business,”
    will that get you off the hook?
Someone is watching you closely, you know—
    Someone not impressed with weak excuses.

13-14 Eat honey, dear child—it’s good for you—
    and delicacies that melt in your mouth.
Likewise knowledge,
    and wisdom for your soul—
Get that and your future’s secured,
    your hope is on solid rock.

15-16 Don’t interfere with good people’s lives;
    don’t try to get the best of them.
No matter how many times you trip them up,
    God-loyal people don’t stay down long;
Soon they’re up on their feet,
    while the wicked end up flat on their faces.

17-18 Don’t laugh when your enemy falls;
    don’t gloat over his collapse.
God might see, and become very provoked,
    and then take pity on his plight.

19-20 Don’t bother your head with braggarts
    or wish you could succeed like the wicked.
Those people have no future at all;
    they’re headed down a dead-end street.

21-22 Fear God, dear child—respect your leaders;
    don’t be defiant or mutinous.
Without warning your life can turn upside down,
    and who knows how or when it might happen?

More Sayings of the Wise

An Honest Answer

23 It’s wrong, very wrong,
    to go along with injustice.

24-25 Whoever whitewashes the wicked
    gets a black mark in the history books,
But whoever exposes the wicked
    will be thanked and rewarded.

26 An honest answer
    is like a warm hug.

27 First plant your fields;
    then build your barn.

28-29 Don’t talk about your neighbors behind their backs—
    no slander or gossip, please.
Don’t say to anyone, “I’ll get back at you for what you did to me.
    I’ll make you pay for what you did!”

30-34 One day I walked by the field of an old lazybones,
    and then passed the vineyard of a slob;
They were overgrown with weeds,
    thick with thistles, all the fences broken down.
I took a long look and pondered what I saw;
    the fields preached me a sermon and I listened:
“A nap here, a nap there, a day off here, a day off there,
    sit back, take it easy—do you know what comes next?
Just this: You can look forward to a dirt-poor life,
    with poverty as your permanent houseguest!”