Chapter 18

1 He who keeps himself separate for his private purpose goes against all good sense. 2 A foolish man has no pleasure in good sense, but only to let what is in his heart come to light. 3 When the evil-doer comes, a low opinion comes with him, and with the loss of honour comes shame. 4 The words of a man's mouth are like deep waters: the fountain of wisdom is like a flowing stream. 5 To have respect for the person of the evil-doer is not good, or to give a wrong decision against the upright. 6 A foolish man's lips are a cause of fighting, and his mouth makes him open to blows. 7 The mouth of a foolish man is his destruction, and his lips are a net for his soul. 8 The words of one who says evil of his neighbour secretly are like sweet food, and go down into the inner parts of the stomach. 9 He who does not give his mind to his work is brother to him who makes destruction. 10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower: the upright man running into it is safe. 11 The property of a man of wealth is his strong town, and it is as a high wall in the thoughts of his heart. 12 Before destruction the heart of man is full of pride, and before honour goes a gentle spirit. 13 To give an answer before hearing is a foolish thing and a cause of shame. 14 The spirit of a man will be his support when he is ill; but how may a broken spirit be lifted up? 15 The heart of the man of good sense gets knowledge; the ear of the wise is searching for knowledge. 16 A man's offering makes room for him, letting him come before great men. 17 The man who first puts his cause before the judge seems to be in the right; but then his neighbour comes and puts his cause in its true light. 18 The decision of chance puts an end to argument, parting the strong. 19 A brother wounded is like a strong town, and violent acts are like a locked tower. 20 With the fruit of a man's mouth his stomach will be full; the produce of his lips will be his in full measure. 21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue; and those to whom it is dear will have its fruit for their food. 22 Whoever gets a wife gets a good thing, and has the approval of the Lord. 23 The poor man makes requests for grace, but the man of wealth gives a rough answer. 24 There are friends who may be a man's destruction, but there is a lover who keeps nearer than a brother.

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