Proverbs 29

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If People Can’t See What God Is Doing

[1-14] For people who hate discipline
and only get more stubborn,
There’ll come a day when life tumbles in and they break,
but by then it’ll be too late to help them.

When good people run things, everyone is glad,
but when the ruler is bad, everyone groans.

If you love wisdom, you’ll delight your parents,
but you’ll destroy their trust if you run with whores.

A leader of good judgment gives stability;
an exploiting leader leaves a trail of waste.

A flattering neighbor is up to no good;
he’s probably planning to take advantage of you.

Evil people fall into their own traps;
good people run the other way, glad to escape.

The good-hearted understand what it’s like to be poor;
the hardhearted haven’t the faintest idea.

A gang of cynics can upset a whole city;
a group of sages can calm everyone down.

A sage trying to work things out with a fool
gets only scorn and sarcasm for his trouble.

Murderers hate honest people;
moral folks encourage them.

A fool lets it all hang out;
a sage quietly mulls it over.

When a leader listens to malicious gossip,
all the workers get infected with evil.

The poor and their abusers have at least something in common:
they can both see—their sight, God’s gift!

Leadership gains authority and respect
when the voiceless poor are treated fairly.

[15-27] Wise discipline imparts wisdom;
spoiled adolescents embarrass their parents.

When degenerates take charge, crime runs wild,
but the righteous will eventually observe their collapse.

Discipline your children; you’ll be glad you did—
they’ll turn out delightful to live with.

If people can’t see what God is doing,
they stumble all over themselves;
But when they attend to what he reveals,
they are most blessed.

It takes more than talk to keep workers in line;
mere words go in one ear and out the other.

Observe the people who always talk before they think—
even simpletons are better off than they are.

If you let people treat you like a doormat,
you’ll be quite forgotten in the end.

Angry people stir up a lot of discord;
the intemperate stir up trouble.

Pride lands you flat on your face;
humility prepares you for honors.

Befriend an outlaw
and become an enemy to yourself.
When the victims cry out,
you’ll be included in their curses
if you’re a coward to their cause in court.

The fear of human opinion disables;
trusting in God protects you from that.

Everyone tries to get help from the leader,
but only God will give us justice.

Good people can’t stand the sight of deliberate evil;
the wicked can’t stand the sight of well-chosen goodness.

Scripture taken from The Message. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.

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