16

1We can make our own plans,

but the Lord gives the right answer.

2People may be pure in their own eyes,

but the Lord examines their motives.

3Commit your actions to the Lord,

and your plans will succeed.

4The Lord has made everything for his own purposes,

even the wicked for a day of disaster.

5The Lord detests the proud;

they will surely be punished.

6Unfailing love and faithfulness make atonement for sin.

By fearing the Lord, people avoid evil.

7When people’s lives please the Lord,

even their enemies are at peace with them.

8Better to have little, with godliness,

than to be rich and dishonest.

9We can make our plans,

but the Lord determines our steps.

10The king speaks with divine wisdom;

he must never judge unfairly.

11The Lord demands accurate scales and balances;

he sets the standards for fairness.

12A king detests wrongdoing,

for his rule is built on justice.

13The king is pleased with words from righteous lips;

he loves those who speak honestly.

14The anger of the king is a deadly threat;

the wise will try to appease it.

15When the king smiles, there is life;

his favor refreshes like a spring rain.

16How much better to get wisdom than gold,

and good judgment than silver!

17The path of the virtuous leads away from evil;

whoever follows that path is safe.

18Pride goes before destruction,

and haughtiness before a fall.

19Better to live humbly with the poor

than to share plunder with the proud.

20Those who listen to instruction will prosper;

those who trust the Lord will be joyful.

21The wise are known for their understanding,

and pleasant words are persuasive.

22Discretion is a life-giving fountain to those who possess it,

but discipline is wasted on fools.

23From a wise mind comes wise speech;

the words of the wise are persuasive.

24Kind words are like honey—

sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.

25There is a path before each person that seems right,

but it ends in death.

26It is good for workers to have an appetite;

an empty stomach drives them on.

27Scoundrels create trouble;

their words are a destructive blaze.

28A troublemaker plants seeds of strife;

gossip separates the best of friends.

29Violent people mislead their companions,

leading them down a harmful path.

30With narrowed eyes, people plot evil;

with a smirk, they plan their mischief.

31Gray hair is a crown of glory;

it is gained by living a godly life.

32Better to be patient than powerful;

better to have self-control than to conquer a city.

33We may throw the dice,*16:33 Hebrew We may cast lots. 

but the Lord determines how they fall.