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New International Version
15 Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far away.
16 Those who oppress the poor to increase their wealth and those who give gifts to the rich – both come to poverty.
17 Pay attention and turn your ear to the sayings of the wise; apply your heart to what I teach,
18 For it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart and have all of them ready on your lips.
19 So that your trust may be in the LORD, I teach you today, even you.
20 Have I not written thirty sayings for you, sayings of counsel and knowledge
21 Teaching you to be honest and to speak the truth, so that you bring back truthful reports to those you serve?
22 Do not exploit the poor because they are poor and do not crush the needy in court
23 For the LORD will take up their case and will exact life for life.
24 Do not make friends with the hot-tempered, do not associate with those who are easily angered
25 Or you may learn their ways and get yourself ensnared.
26 Do not be one who shakes hands in pledge or puts up security for debts
27 If you lack the means to pay, your very bed will be snatched from under you.
28 Do not move an ancient boundary stone set up by your ancestors.
29 Do you see those who are skilled in their work? They will serve before kings; they will not serve before officials of low rank.
15 Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him.
16 He who oppresses the poor to get gain for himself and he who gives to the rich--both will surely come to want.
17 Listen (consent and submit) to the words of the wise, and apply your mind to my knowledge
18 For it will be pleasant if you keep them in your mind [believing them]; your lips will be accustomed to [confessing] them.
19 So that your trust (belief, reliance, support, and confidence) may be in the Lord, I have made known these things to you today, even to you.
20 Have I not written to you [long ago] excellent things in counsels and knowledge
21 To make you know the certainty of the words of truth, that you may give a true answer to those who sent you? [Luke 1:3, 4.]
22 Rob not the poor [being tempted by their helplessness], neither oppress the afflicted at the gate [where the city court is held], [Exod. 23:6; Job 31:16, 21.]
23 For the Lord will plead their cause and deprive of life those who deprive [the poor or afflicted]. [Zech. 7:10; Mal. 3:5.]
24 Make no friendships with a man given to anger, and with a wrathful man do not associate
25 Lest you learn his ways and get yourself into a snare.
26 Be not one of those who strike hands and pledge themselves, or of those who become security for another's debts.
27 If you have nothing with which to pay, why should he take your bed from under you?
28 Remove not the ancient landmark which your fathers have set up.
29 Do you see a man diligent and skillful in his business? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men.
King James Version
15 Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.
16 He that oppresseth the poor to increase his riches, and he that giveth to the rich, shall surely come to want.
17 Bow down thine ear, and hear the words of the wise, and apply thine heart unto my knowledge.
18 For it is a pleasant thing if thou keep them within thee; they shall withal be fitted in thy lips.
19 That thy trust may be in the LORD, I have made known to thee this day, even to thee.
20 Have not I written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge,
21 That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?
22 Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
23 For the LORD will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them.
24 Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go:
25 Lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul.
26 Be not thou one of them that strike hands, or of them that are sureties for debts.
27 If thou hast nothing to pay, why should he take away thy bed from under thee?
28 Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.
29 Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.
Becoming a Christian
Would you like to experience forgiveness and new life from the God of the Bible, who calls every person to believe that he sent his son Jesus Christ to make this possible?
The Bible explains why everyone needs to receive forgiveness and is called to serve Jesus Christ. The consistency of the Bible story, which was authored by people living thousands of years apart from diverse cultures and even different languages, is often cited as evidence of divine inspiration. Wikipedia has a list of many Biblical prophesies which have come true.
The story of God's plan to restore his relationship with us can be summarised in eight famous Bible verses below.
- In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
- All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
- God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
- Jesus said, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
- If you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
- For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.
- But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
- Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
The truth in these verses is simple, yet to embrace it means letting go of all our personal hopes and dreams and embracing God's greater purpose for our lives instead, a purpose far above anything we could dream or imagine.
This is the most important decision you will ever make, because it affects not just the rest of your life here on earth, but what comes after as well. Don't put it off until too late. If you died tonight make the decision to spend eternity with your loving Father in Heaven.
If you're wondering what to do next as a new Christian, check out these helpful suggestions from Mary Fairchild on About.com: