Avoiding Immorality1 My son, pay attention to my wisdom; incline your ear to my understanding, 2 that you may maintain discretion and your lips may preserve knowledge. 3 Though the lips of the forbidden woman ▼
▼Or adulteressdrip honey and her speech ▼
▼Or palate[is] smoother than oil, 4 her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a double-edged sword. 5 Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight ▼
▼Or lay hold ofto Sheol. 6 She does not consider the path of life; she does not know that her ways are unstable. 7 So now, my sons, listen to me, and do not turn aside from the words of my mouth. 8 Keep your path far from her; do not go near the door of her house, 9 lest you concede your vigor to others, and your years to one who is cruel, 10 lest strangers feast on your wealth, and your labors [enrich] the house of a foreigner. 11 At the end of your life you will groan when your flesh and your body are spent, 12 and you will say, “How I hated discipline, and my heart despised reproof! 13 I did not listen to the voice of my teachers [or] incline my ear to my mentors. 14 I am on the brink of utter ruin in the midst of the whole assembly.” 15 Drink water from your own cistern, and running water out of your own well. 16 Why should your springs flow in the streets, your streams of water in the public squares? 17 Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers. 18 May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth: 19 A loving doe, a graceful fawn— may her breasts satisfy you always; may you be captivated ▼
▼Or be led astray; also in verse 20by her love forever. 20 Why be captivated, my son, by an adulteress, or embrace the bosom of a stranger? ▼
▼Or a foreign woman21 For a man’s ways are before the eyes of the LORD, and [the Lord] watches all his paths. 22 The iniquities of a wicked man entrap him; the cords of his own sin entangle him. 23 He will die for lack of discipline, led astray by his own great folly.
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