Proverbs 17

1 It is better to eat a piece of dry bread in a quiet place,

than to eat a big feast in a house full of arguments.

2 A slave who is wise will have authority over a son who does stupid things.

When his master dies, that slave will receive some of his valuable things.

3 You need a hot fire to make silver and gold become pure.

It is the Lord who does that for people,

to show what they are really like.

4 People who do evil things listen to evil advice.

People who tell lies listen to other people's lies.

5 If you laugh at poor people,

you are insulting God, who made them.

If you are happy when trouble happens to other people,

you will receive the punishment that you deserve.

6 Old people should be proud of their grandchildren.

In the same way, children should be proud of their parents.

7 It does not seem right when a fool says clever things.

It is certainly not right when a ruler tells lies.

8 Somebody who offers a bribe thinks that it will work like magic.

It will help him to do whatever he wants to do.

9 If you forgive people when they hurt you,

they will still love you.

But if you continue to talk about what they have done,

they will no longer be your friends.

10 You can warn a wise person once and he will learn what is right.

But a fool never learns, even if you hit him a hundred times.

11 An evil person never obeys authority,

so a cruel messenger will come to punish him.

12 Do not go near a fool who is doing stupid things.

It would be safer to meet a mother bear who has lost her babies.

13 If people are kind to you, do not do evil things in return.

Anyone who does that will always have trouble in his home.

14 It is difficult to stop a quarrel once it has started.

It is like water that pours out of a broken pot. Stop it quickly!

15 If a judge says that a guilty person is not guilty,

the Lord hates it.

If a judge punishes someone who is not guilty,

the Lord hates that too.

16 Money does not help a foolish person,

because he does not want to become wise.

17 A friend will always show that he loves you.

Relatives are there to help you when you are in trouble.

18 Only a stupid person promises to pay someone else's debts,

even if he is a friend or a neighbour.

19 Someone who loves to argue loves sin.

Someone who boasts causes trouble for himself.

20 Anyone who thinks about bad things will not do well in life.

Anyone who deceives people with lies will have a lot of trouble.

21 To have a foolish son makes parents sad.

The father of a fool is never happy.

22 If you are happy in life, you will be healthy.

But if you are sad and upset, your body will be weak.

23 Wicked judges secretly accept bribes.

Then they are not fair when they judge.

24 A person who knows what is right can easily find wisdom.

But a foolish person looks everywhere and never finds it.

25 To have a foolish son makes his father sad.

It makes his mother very upset.

26 It is not right to punish a person who has done nothing wrong.

It is wrong to beat honest people with sticks.

27 A wise person does not talk too much.

Anyone who keeps quiet shows that he understands things.

28 Even a fool seems to be wise if he keeps quiet.

If he keeps his mouth shut, people will think that he is clever.