Watch What You Say and Do
1 The Lord hates anyone
who cheats,
but he likes everyone
who is honest.
2 Too much pride
can put you to shame.
It's wiser to be humble.
3 If you do the right thing,
honesty will be your guide.
But if you are crooked,
you will be trapped
by your own dishonesty.

4 When God is angry,
money won't help you.
Obeying God is the only way
to be saved from death.
5 If you are truly good,
you will do right;
if you are wicked,
you will be destroyed
by your own sin.
6 Honesty can keep you safe,
but if you can't be trusted,
you trap yourself.
7 When the wicked die,
their hopes die with them.
8 Trouble goes right past
the Lord's people
and strikes the wicked.

9 Dishonest people use gossip
to destroy their neighbors;
good people are protected
by their own good sense.
10 When honest people prosper
and the wicked disappear,
the whole city celebrates.
11 Good people bring prosperity
to their city,
but deceitful liars
can destroy a city.

12 It's stupid to say bad things
about your neighbors.
If you are sensible,
you will keep quiet.
13 A gossip tells everything,
but a true friend
will keep a secret.
14 A city without wise leaders
will end up in ruin;
a city with many wise leaders
will be kept safe.

15 It's a dangerous thing
to guarantee payment
for someone's debts.
Don't do it!
16 A gracious woman
will be respected,
but a ruthless man
will only get rich.
17 Kindness is rewarded—
but if you are cruel,
you hurt yourself.
18 Meanness gets you nowhere,
but goodness is rewarded.
19 Always do the right thing,
and you will live;
keep on doing wrong,
and you will die.

20 The Lord hates sneaky people,
but he likes everyone
who lives right.
21 You can be sure of this:
All crooks will be punished,
but God's people won't.
22 A beautiful woman
who acts foolishly
is like a gold ring
on the snout of a pig.
23 Good people want what is best,
but troublemakers
hope to stir up trouble.

24 Sometimes you can become rich
by being generous
or poor by being greedy.
25 Generosity will be rewarded:
Give a cup of water,
and you will receive
a cup of water in return.
26 Charge too much for grain,
and you will be cursed;
sell it at a fair price,
and you will be praised.
27 Try hard to do right,
and you will win friends;
go looking for trouble,
and you will find it.
28 Trust in your wealth,
and you will be a failure,
but God's people will prosper
like healthy plants.

29 Fools who cause trouble
in the family
won't inherit a thing.
They will end up as slaves
of someone with good sense.
30 Live right, and you will eat
from the life-giving tree.
And if you act wisely,
others will follow.
31 If good people are rewarded
here on this earth,
all who are cruel and mean
will surely be punished.