Those Who Are Worthy of Praise
1My soul takes pleasure in three things,
and they are beautiful in the sight of the Lord and of men;a
agreement between brothers, friendship between neighbors,
and a wife and a husband who live in harmony.
2My soul hates three kinds of men,
and I am greatly offended at their life:
a beggar who is proud, a rich man who is a liar,
and an adulterous old man who lacks good sense.
3You have gathered nothing in your youth;
how then can you find anything in your old age?
4What an attractive thing is judgment in gray-haired men,
and for the aged to possess good counsel!
5How attractive is wisdom in the aged,
and understanding and counsel in honorable men!
6Rich experience is the crown of the aged,
and their boast is the fear of the Lord.
7With nine thoughts I have gladdened my heart,
and a tenth I shall tell with my tongue:
a man rejoicing in his children;
a man who lives to see the downfall of his foes;
8happy is he who lives with an intelligent wife,
and he who has not made a slip with his tongue,
and he who has not served a man inferior to himself;
9happy is he who has gained good sense,
and he who speaks to attentive listeners.
10How great is he who has gained wisdom!
But there is no one superior to him who fears the Lord.
11The fear of the Lord surpasses everything;
to whom shall be likened the one who holds it fast?b
Some Extreme Forms of Evil
The Evil of a Wicked Woman
16I would rather dwell with a lion and a dragon
than dwell with an evil wife.
17The wickedness of a wife changes her appearance,
and darkens her face like that of a bear.
18Her husband takes his meals among the neighbors,
and he cannot help sighinge bitterly.
19Any iniquity is insignificant compared to a wife's iniquity;
may a sinner's lot befall her!
20A sandy ascent for the feet of the aged-
such is a garrulous wife for a quiet husband.
21Do not be ensnared by a woman's beauty,
and do not desire a woman for her possessions.f
22There is wrath and impudence and great disgrace
when a wife supports her husband.
23A dejected mind, a gloomy face,
and a wounded heart are caused by an evil wife.
Drooping hands and weak knees
are caused by the wife who does not make her husband happy.
24From a woman sin had its beginning,
and because of her we all die.
25Allow no outlet to water,
and no boldness of speech in an evil wife.
26If she does not go as you direct,
separate her from yourself.