Proverbs 4

1Sons, listen to your father’s teachings. Pay attention so you will understand! 2Why? Because the things I teach you are important and good. So don’t ever forget my teachings. 3I was young once too! I was my daddy’s little boy and my mother’s only son. 4And my father taught me these things. He said to me, “Remember the things I say. Obey my commands and you will live. 5Get wisdom and understanding! Don’t forget my words. Always follow my teachings. 6Don’t turn away from wisdom. Then wisdom will protect you. Love wisdom, and wisdom will keep you safe.” 7Wisdom begins when you decide to get wisdom. So use everything you own to get wisdom! ˻Then you will become wise.˼ 8Love wisdom, and wisdom will make you great. Make wisdom most important, and wisdom will bring you honor. 9She ˻(Wisdom)˼ is the greatest thing that can happen to you. 10Son, listen to me. Do the things I say, and you will live long. 11I am teaching you about wisdom. I am leading you along the straight path. 12Follow this path, and your feet won’t be caught ˻in any trap˼. You can run and not stumble. ˻You will be safe in the things you try to do.˼ 13Always remember these lessons. Don’t forget these lessons. They are your life! 14Don’t follow the path evil people walk on. ˻Don’t live like that.˼ Don’t try to be like them. 15Stay away from evil. Don’t go near it. Walk straight past it. 16Bad people can’t sleep until they do something wrong. Those people can’t sleep until they hurt some other person. 17Those people can’t live without doing evil and hurting other people. 18Good people are like the early morning light. The sun rises and the day becomes brighter and happier. 19But bad people are like a dark night. They are lost in the darkness and they fall over things they can’t see. 20My son, pay attention to the things I say. Listen closely to my words. 21Don’t let my words leave you. Remember the things I say. 22My teaching will give life to people who listen. My words are like good health to the body. 23The most important thing is for you to be careful in the things you think. Your thoughts control your life. 24Don’t bend the truth and say things that are not right. Don’t tell lies. 25Don’t let yourself turn away from the good and wise goals that are before you. 26Be very careful what you do. Live a good life. 27Don’t leave the straight path—the way that is good and right. But always turn away from evil.

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