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Proverbs 4

The importance of wise words

1 Listen to what your father teaches you my sons. If you listen, you will understand.

2 The things that I am teaching you are good. So remember them.

3 When I was a little boy, the one son of my parents,

4 my father taught me. He said,

‘Remember what I say. And never forget it. Obey my words. If you do, you will live.

5 Look for words that are wise. Look for wisdom! Do not forget my words and do not turn your ear away from them.

6 If you obey my wise words, they will keep you from trouble. If you love them, they will keep you safe.

7 To learn wise words is the most important thing that you can do. Whatever else you get, get wisdom.

8 If you love wise words, they will make you great. Remember that wise words are important. If you do, it will cause people to speak well about you.

9 Everyone will speak well about you when they hear your wise words.’

10 Listen to me, my son, and accept my words. If you do, the years of your life will be many.

11 I have taught you wise words. And I have taught you the right way to live.

12 When you walk, your steps will be sure. And when you run, you will not fall.

13 Always remember what you have learnt. Do not forget it. The things that you have learnt will give you life. So keep them well.

14 Do not go where bad people go. Do not follow the ways of bad people.

15 Do not do it! Keep away from every bad thing! Refuse it and go on your way.

16 Bad people cannot sleep unless they have done something wrong. They lie awake unless they have caused someone to fall.

17 To do bad things is like food and drink to bad men.

18 But the road that good people travel along is like the sunrise. It gets brighter and brighter until it is really day.

19 But the road of bad people is as dark as night. They fall. But they cannot see what has caused them to fall.

20 Listen to what I say, my son. Listen to my words.

21 Never let my words leave you. Think about them and obey them.

22 They will give life to anyone who understands them. And they will give health to their whole body.

23 Be careful how you think. Your thoughts make you the person that you are.

24 Never say anything that is not true.

25 Look straight in front of you. And watch where you are going.

26 You must decide to do things carefully. So whatever you do will be right.

27 Keep away from bad people and walk on a straight path. Do not go one step off the right way.