Proverbs 20
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1  Wine is a mocker, strong drink is riotous; and whosoever reeleth thereby is not wise.

א  לֵץ הַיַּיִן הֹמֶה שֵׁכָר וְכָל שֹׁגֶה בּוֹ לֹא יֶחְכָּם.

2  The terror of a king is as the roaring of a lion: he that provoketh him to anger forfeiteth his life.

ב  נַהַם כַּכְּפִיר אֵימַת מֶלֶךְ מִתְעַבְּרוֹ חוֹטֵא נַפְשׁוֹ.

3  It is an honour for a man to keep aloof from strife; but every fool will be snarling.

ג  כָּבוֹד לָאִישׁ שֶׁבֶת מֵרִיב וְכָל אֱוִיל יִתְגַּלָּע.

4  The sluggard will not plow when winter setteth in; therefore he shall beg in harvest, and have nothing.

ד  מֵחֹרֶף עָצֵל לֹא יַחֲרֹשׁ ישאל (וְשָׁאַל) בַּקָּצִיר וָאָיִן.

5  Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out.

ה  מַיִם עֲמֻקִּים עֵצָה בְלֶב אִישׁ וְאִישׁ תְּבוּנָה יִדְלֶנָּה.

6  Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness; but a faithful man who can find?

ו  רָב אָדָם יִקְרָא אִישׁ חַסְדּוֹ וְאִישׁ אֱמוּנִים מִי יִמְצָא.

7  He that walketh in his integrity as a just man, happy are his children after him.

ז  מִתְהַלֵּךְ בְּתֻמּוֹ צַדִּיק אַשְׁרֵי בָנָיו אַחֲרָיו.

8  A king that sitteth on the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.

ח  מֶלֶךְ יוֹשֵׁב עַל כִּסֵּא דִין מְזָרֶה בְעֵינָיו כָּל רָע.

9  Who can say: ‘I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin’?

ט  מִי יֹאמַר זִכִּיתִי לִבִּי טָהַרְתִּי מֵחַטָּאתִי.

10  Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them alike are an abomination to Hashem.

י  אֶבֶן וָאֶבֶן אֵיפָה וְאֵיפָה תּוֹעֲבַת יְהוָה גַּם שְׁנֵיהֶם.

11  Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

יא  גַּם בְּמַעֲלָלָיו יִתְנַכֶּר נָעַר אִם זַךְ וְאִם יָשָׁר פָּעֳלוֹ.

12  The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, Hashem hath made even both of them.

יב  אֹזֶן שֹׁמַעַת וְעַיִן רֹאָה יְהוָה עָשָׂה גַם שְׁנֵיהֶם.

13  Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and thou shalt have bread in plenty.

יג  אַל תֶּאֱהַב שֵׁנָה פֶּן תִּוָּרֵשׁ פְּקַח עֵינֶיךָ שְׂבַע לָחֶם.

14  ‘It is bad, it is bad’, saith the buyer; but when he is gone his way, then he boasteth.

יד  רַע רַע יֹאמַר הַקּוֹנֶה וְאֹזֵל לוֹ אָז יִתְהַלָּל.

15  There is gold, and a multitude of rubies; but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel.

טו  יֵשׁ זָהָב וְרָב פְּנִינִים וּכְלִי יְקָר שִׂפְתֵי דָעַת.

16  Take his garment that is surety for a stranger; and hold him in pledge that is surety for an alien woman.

טז  לְקַח בִּגְדוֹ כִּי עָרַב זָר וּבְעַד נכרים (נָכְרִיָּה) חַבְלֵהוּ.

17  Bread of falsehood is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

יז  עָרֵב לָאִישׁ לֶחֶם שָׁקֶר וְאַחַר יִמָּלֵא פִיהוּ חָצָץ.

18  Every purpose is established by counsel; and with good advice carry on war.

יח  מַחֲשָׁבוֹת בְּעֵצָה תִכּוֹן וּבְתַחְבֻּלוֹת עֲשֵׂה מִלְחָמָה.

19  He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets; therefore meddle not with him that openeth wide his lips.

יט  גּוֹלֶה סּוֹד הוֹלֵךְ רָכִיל וּלְפֹתֶה שְׂפָתָיו לֹא תִתְעָרָב.

20  Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in the blackest darkness.

כ  מְקַלֵּל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ יִדְעַךְ נֵרוֹ באישון (בֶּאֱשׁוּן) חֹשֶׁךְ.

21  An estate may be gotten hastily at the beginning; but the end thereof shall not be blessed.

כא  נַחֲלָה מבחלת (מְבֹהֶלֶת) בָּרִאשׁוֹנָה וְאַחֲרִיתָהּ לֹא תְבֹרָךְ.

22  Say not thou: ‘I will requite evil’; wait for Hashem, and He will save thee.

al to-MAR a-sha-l’-MAH ra ka-VAY la-do-NAI v’-YO-sha LAKH.

כב  אַל תֹּאמַר אֲשַׁלְּמָה רָע קַוֵּה לַיהוָה וְיֹשַׁע לָךְ.

20:22   Wait for the LORD, and He will save thee

Sometimes we see wrongdoing in this world and it bothers us. This verse teaches that it is not up to man to avenge evil, rather, it is the duty of God. However, 14th-century sage Rabbi Levi ben Gershon (Ralbag) points out, we should not wish for God’s vengeance against our enemies, but for our own salvation from their harm. Similarly, the Talmud comments regarding the verse in Psalms 104:3, that we should not pray for our enemies demise but that they should repent of their evil ways.

Comment

23  Divers weights are an abomination to Hashem; and a false balance is not good.

כג  תּוֹעֲבַת יְהוָה אֶבֶן וָאָבֶן וּמֹאזְנֵי מִרְמָה לֹא טוֹב.

24  A man’s goings are of Hashem; how then can man look to his way?

כד  מֵיְהוָה מִצְעֲדֵי גָבֶר וְאָדָם מַה יָּבִין דַּרְכּוֹ.

25  It is a snare to a man rashly to say: ‘Holy’, and after vows to make inquiry.

כה  מוֹקֵשׁ אָדָם יָלַע קֹדֶשׁ וְאַחַר נְדָרִים לְבַקֵּר.

26  A wise king sifteth the wicked, and turneth the wheel over them.

כו  מְזָרֶה רְשָׁעִים מֶלֶךְ חָכָם וַיָּשֶׁב עֲלֵיהֶם אוֹפָן.

27  The spirit of man is the lamp of Hashem, searching all the inward parts.

כז  נֵר יְהוָה נִשְׁמַת אָדָם חֹפֵשׂ כָּל חַדְרֵי בָטֶן.

28  Mercy and truth preserve the king; and his throne is upheld by mercy.

כח  חֶסֶד וֶאֱמֶת יִצְּרוּ מֶלֶךְ וְסָעַד בַּחֶסֶד כִּסְאוֹ.

29  The glory of young men is their strength; and the beauty of old men is the hoary head.

כט  תִּפְאֶרֶת בַּחוּרִים כֹּחָם וַהֲדַר זְקֵנִים שֵׂיבָה.

30  Sharp wounds cleanse away evil; so do stripes that reach the inward parts.

ל  חַבֻּרוֹת פֶּצַע תמריק (תַּמְרוּק) בְּרָע וּמַכּוֹת חַדְרֵי בָטֶן.

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Proverbs 19
Proverbs 21

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Proverbs 20