Laws in the Book of Proverbs

A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels: To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother: For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck. My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not. – Proverbs 1:5-10.

Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you. – Proverbs 1:23.

Whoso hearkeneth unto Me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil. – Proverbs 1:33.

So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; if thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. – Proverbs 2:2-6.

Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path. When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness; who rejoice to do evil, – Proverbs 2:9-14.

Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man. Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. – Proverbs 3:3-7.

My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of his correction: For whom the Lord loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. – Proverbs 3:11-12.

Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her. Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her. – Proverbs 3:13-18.

The Lord by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens. By his knowledge the depths are broken up, and the clouds drop down the dew. My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion: So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck. Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble. When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet. Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh. For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken. Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it. Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee. Devise not evil against thy neighbour, seeing he dwelleth securely by thee. Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm. Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways. For the froward is abomination to the Lord: but his secret is with the righteous. The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just. Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly. The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools. – Proverbs 3:19-35.

Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth. Forsake her not, and she shall preserve thee: love her, and she shall keep thee. Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her. She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee. – Proverbs 4:5-9.

The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. The way of the wicked is as darkness: they know not at what they stumble. – Proverbs 4:18-19.

Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. – Proverbs 4:23.

Put away from thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee. – Proverbs 4:24.

Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left. – Proverbs 4:26-27.

His own iniquities shall take the wicked himself, and he shall be holden with the cords of his sins. He shall die without instruction; and in the greatness of his folly he shall go astray. – Proverbs 5:22-23.

Thou art snared with the words of thy mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth. – Proverbs 6:2.

A naughty [worthless] person, a wicked man, walketh with a froward mouth. He winketh with his eyes, he speaketh with his feet, he teacheth with his fingers; frowardness is in his heart, he deviseth mischief continually; he soweth discord. Therefore shall his calamity come suddenly; suddenly shall he be broken without remedy. – Proverbs 6:12-15.

These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: 17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, an heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, a false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren. – Proverbs 6:16-19.

The commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life – Proverbs 6:23.

Men do not despise a thief, if he steal to satisfy his soul when he is hungry; but if he be found, he shall restore sevenfold; he shall give all the substance of his house. – Proverbs 6:30-31.

Whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul. A wound and dishonour shall he get; and his reproach shall not be wiped away. For jealousy is the rage of a man: therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance. – Proverbs 6:32-34.

Wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it. – Proverbs 8:11.

Whoso findeth me [wisdom] findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the Lord. But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death. – Proverbs 8:35-36.

Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning. – Proverbs 9:9.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. – Proverbs 9:10.

Treasures of wickedness profit nothing: but righteousness delivereth from death. – Proverbs 10:2.

The wise in heart will receive commandments: but a prating fool shall fall. He that walketh uprightly walketh surely: but he that perverteth his ways shall be known. – Proverbs 10:8-9.

Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins. – Proverbs 10:12.

In the lips of him that hath understanding wisdom is found. – Proverbs 10:13.

The labour of the righteous tendeth to life: the fruit of the wicked to sin. – Proverbs 10.

He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander, is a fool. In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise. The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked is little worth. The lips of the righteous feed many: but fools die for want of wisdom. – Proverbs 10:18-21.

When pride cometh, then cometh shame – Proverbs 11:2.

A man of understanding holdeth his peace. A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter. – Proverbs 11:12-13.

To him that soweth righteousness shall be a sure reward. As righteousness tendeth to life: so he that pursueth evil pursueth it to his own death. They that are of a froward heart are abomination to the Lord: but such as are upright in their way are his delight. Though hand join in hand, the wicked shall not be unpunished: but the seed of the righteous shall be delivered. – Proverbs 11:18-21.

There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty. – Proverbs 11:24.

He that diligently seeketh good procureth favour: but he that seeketh mischief, it shall come unto him. – Proverbs 11:27.

He that trusteth in his riches shall fall – Proverbs 11:28.

He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind. – Proverbs 11:29.

He that hateth reproof is brutish. – Proverbs 12:1.

The counsels of the wicked are deceit. – Proverbs 12:5.

A man will be commended according to his wisdom, but he who is of a perverse heart will be despised. – Proverbs 12:8.

The wicked is snared by the transgression of his lips. – Proverbs 12:13.

A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth: and the recompence of a man's hands shall be rendered unto him. – Proverbs 12:14.

The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise. – Proverbs 12:15.

He that speaketh truth sheweth forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit. – Proverbs 12:17.

Lying lips are abomination to the Lord: but they that deal truly are his delight. – Proverbs 12:22.

In the way of righteousness is life: and in the pathway thereof there is no death.– Proverbs 12:28.

The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat. – Proverbs 13:4.

Only by pride cometh contention. – Proverbs 13:10.

Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded. – Proverbs 13:13.

Poverty and shame shall be to him that refuseth instruction: but he that regardeth reproof shall be honoured. – Proverbs 13:18.

He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes. – Proverbs 13:24.

The backslider in heart shall be filled with his own ways: and a good man shall be satisfied from himself. – Proverbs 14:14.

The evil bow before the good; and the wicked at the gates of the righteous. – Proverbs 14:19.

A true witness delivereth souls: but a deceitful witness speaketh lies. – Proverbs 14:25.

In the fear of the Lord is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge. The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death. – Proverbs 14:26-27

He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding. – Proverbs 14:29

Envy is rottenness to the bones. – Proverbs 14:30

A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. – Proverbs 15:1

The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good. – Proverbs 15:3

A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.– Proverbs 15:4.

A scorner loveth not one that reproveth him: neither will he go unto the wise. – Proverbs 15:12.

A wrathful man stirreth up strife: but he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife. – Proverbs 15:18

The way of the slothful man is as an hedge of thorns: but the way of the righteous is made plain. – Proverbs 15:19

Folly is joy to him that is destitute of wisdom – Proverbs 15:21.

The way of life is above to the wise, that he may depart from hell beneath. – Proverbs 15:24.

The Lord will destroy the house of the proud. – Proverbs 15:25.

The fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility. – Proverbs 15:33.

All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the Lord weigheth the spirits. – Proverbs 16:2.

Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established. – Proverbs 16:3.

Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord. – Proverbs 16:5.

By mercy and truth iniquity is purged. – Proverbs 16:6.

When a man's ways please the Lord, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him. – Proverbs 16:7.

A throne is established by righteousness. – Proverbs 16:12.

Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. – Proverbs 16:18.

Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him who has it. – Proverbs 16:22.

An ungodly man diggeth up evil: and in his lips there is as a burning fire. A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends. A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good. He shutteth his eyes to devise froward things: moving his lips he bringeth evil to pass. – Proverbs 16:27-30.

He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city. – Proverbs 16:32.

The fining pot is for silver, and the furnace for gold: but the Lord trieth the hearts. – Proverbs 17:3.

A wicked doer giveth heed to false lips; and a liar giveth ear to a naughty tongue. – Proverbs 17:4.

He that is glad at calamities shall not be unpunished. – Proverbs 17:5.

He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends. – Proverbs 17:9.

Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house. – Proverbs 17:13.

He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the Lord. – Proverbs 17:15.

A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. – Proverbs 17:17

He loveth transgression that loveth strife. – Proverbs 17:19.

Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding. – Proverbs 17:28.

Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom. – Proverbs 18:1.

When the wicked cometh, then cometh also contempt, and with ignominy reproach. – Proverbs 18:3.

It is not good to accept the person of the wicked, to overthrow the righteous in judgment. – Proverbs 18:5.

A fool's lips enter into contention, and his mouth calleth for strokes. A fool's mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul. – Proverbs 18:6-7.

The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly. – Proverbs 18:8.

He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster. – Proverbs 18:9.

Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility. – Proverbs 18:12.

He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him. – Proverbs 18:13.

A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men. – Proverbs 18:16.

A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle. – Proverbs 18:19.

A man's belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled. Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. – Proverbs 18:20-21.

A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. – Proverbs 18:24.

A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape. – Proverbs 19:5.

He that getteth wisdom loveth his own soul: he that keepeth understanding shall find good. – Proverbs 19:8.

A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall perish. – Proverbs 19:9.

The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression. – Proverbs 19:11.

Slothfulness casteth into a deep sleep. – Proverbs 19:15.

He that keepeth the commandment keepeth his own soul. – Proverbs 19:16.

A man of great wrath shall suffer punishment: for if thou deliver him, yet thou must do it again. – Proverbs 19:19.

The desire of a man is his kindness. – Proverbs 19:22.

It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling. – Proverbs 20:3.

The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him. – Proverbs 20:7.

Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right. – Proverbs 20:11.

The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the Lord hath made even both of them. – Proverbs 20:12.

He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips. – Proverbs 20:19.

Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness. – Proverbs 20:20.

The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord, searching all the inward parts. – Proverbs 20:27.

Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the Lord pondereth the hearts. – Proverbs 21:2.

To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice. – Proverbs 21:3.

The robbery of the wicked shall destroy them; because they refuse to do judgment. – Proverbs 21:7.

Whoso stoppeth his ears at the cry of the poor, he also shall cry himself, but shall not be heard. – Proverbs 21:13.

The man that wandereth out of the way of understanding shall remain in the congregation of the dead. – Proverbs 21:16.

Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles. – Proverbs 21:23.

There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the Lord. – Proverbs 21:30.

A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. – Proverbs 22:1.

By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches, and honour, and life. – Proverbs 22:4.

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. – Proverbs 22:6.

The borrower is servant to the lender. – Proverbs 22:7.

He that soweth iniquity shall reap vanity: and the rod of his anger shall fail. – Proverbs 22:8.

Cast out the scorner, and contention shall go out; yea, strife and reproach shall cease. – Proverbs 22:10.

He that oppresseth the poor to increase his riches, and he that giveth to the rich, shall surely come to want. – Proverbs 22:16.

Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go: lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul. – Proverbs 22:24-25.

As [a man] thinketh in his heart, so is he – Proverbs 23:7.

Withhold not correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell. – Proverbs 23:13-14.

Let not thine heart envy sinners. – Proverbs 23:17.

A just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief. Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth: lest the Lord see it, and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him. – Proverbs 24:16-18.

It is not good to have respect of persons in judgment. – Proverbs 24:23.

Say not, I will do so to him as he hath done to me: I will render to the man according to his work. – Proverbs 24:29.

It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter. The heaven for height, and the earth for depth, and the heart of kings is unsearchable. – Proverbs 25:2-3.

Put not forth thyself in the presence of the king, and stand not in the place of great men: for better it is that it be said unto thee, Come up hither; than that thou shouldest be put lower in the presence of the prince whom thine eyes have seen. – Proverbs 25:6-7.

Go not forth hastily to strive, lest thou know not what to do in the end thereof, when thy neighbour hath put thee to shame. Debate thy cause with thy neighbour himself; and discover not a secret to another: lest he that heareth it put thee to shame, and thine infamy turn not away. – Proverbs 25:8-10.

A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. – Proverbs 25:11.

Whoso boasteth himself of a false gift is like clouds and wind without rain. – Proverbs 25:14.

Gluttony is eating more than you need: Hast thou found honey? eat so much as is sufficient for thee, lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it. – Proverbs 25:16.

Don't wear out your welcome: Withdraw thy foot from thy neighbour's house; lest he be weary of thee, and so hate thee. – Proverbs 25:17.

If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink: for thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the Lord shall reward thee. – Proverbs 25:21-22.

A righteous man falling down before the wicked is as a troubled fountain, and a corrupt spring. – Proverbs 25:26.

He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls. – Proverbs 25:28.

Honour is not seemly for a fool. – Proverbs 26:1.

Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit. – Proverbs 26:4-5.

As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly. – Proverbs 26:11.

He that passeth by, and meddleth with strife belonging not to him, is like one that taketh a dog by the ears. – Proverbs 26:17.

Where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth. As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire; so is a contentious man to kindle strife. The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly. – Proverbs 26:20-22.

He that hateth dissembleth with his lips, and layeth up deceit within him; when he speaketh fair, believe him not: for there are seven abominations in his heart. Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the whole congregation. – Proverbs 26:24-26.

Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him. – Proverbs 26:27.

A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin. – Proverbs 26:28.

Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy? – Proverbs 27:4.

The full soul loatheth an honeycomb; but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet. – Proverbs 27:7.

Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the Lord understand all things. – Proverbs 28:5.

Whoso causeth the righteous to go astray in an evil way, he shall fall himself into his own pit – Proverbs 28:10.

He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy. – Proverbs 28:13.

A man that doeth violence to the blood of any person shall flee to the pit; let no man stay him. – Proverbs 28:17.

A man that flattereth his neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet. – Proverbs 29:5.

If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest. – Proverbs 29:9.

A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards. – Proverbs 29:11.

If a ruler hearken to lies, all his servants are wicked. – Proverbs 29:12.

The poor and the deceitful man meet together: the Lord lighteneth both their eyes. – Proverbs 29:13.

Where there is no vision, the people perish. – Proverbs 29:18.

Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him. – Proverbs 29:20.

An angry man stirreth up strife, and a furious man aboundeth in transgression. – Proverbs 29:22.

A man's pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit. – Proverbs 29:23.

The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe. – Proverbs 29:25.

Every man's judgment cometh from the Lord. – Proverbs 29:26.

An unjust man is an abomination to the just: and he that is upright in the way is abomination to the wicked. – Proverbs 29:27.

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Solomon, the son of David, was said to have written more than three thousand proverbs (1 Kings 4:32); many of them are included in the Book of Proverbs. Bible scholars believe that the Proverbs were written and compiled sometime between the tenth and sixth centuries B.C.

We have used the King James Version of the Bible as the basis for this list.


The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV), Public Domain.

Peter Kirby has formulated an impressive collection of early Jewish documents and links available at: Early Jewish Writings

The text of the Book of Proverbs is available online at: Early Jewish Writings or at
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