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Proverbs 17 New King James Version (NKJV)

The Lord Tests Hearts

17 Better is a dry morsel with quietness,
Than a house full of [a]feasting with strife.

A wise servant will rule over a son who causes shame,
And will share an inheritance among the brothers.

The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold,
But the Lord tests the hearts.

An evildoer gives heed to false lips;
A liar listens eagerly to a [b]spiteful tongue.

He who mocks the poor reproaches his Maker;
He who is glad at calamity will not go unpunished.

Children’s children are the crown of old men,
And the glory of children is their father.

Excellent speech is not becoming to a fool,
Much less lying lips to a prince.

A present is a precious stone in the eyes of its possessor;
Wherever he turns, he prospers.

He who covers a transgression seeks love,
But he who repeats a matter separates friends.

10 Rebuke is more effective for a wise man
Than a hundred blows on a fool.

11 An evil man seeks only rebellion;
Therefore a cruel messenger will be sent against him.

12 Let a man meet a bear robbed of her cubs,
Rather than a fool in his folly.

13 Whoever rewards evil for good,
Evil will not depart from his house.

14 The beginning of strife is like releasing water;
Therefore stop contention before a quarrel starts.

15 He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the just,
Both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord.

16 Why is there in the hand of a fool the purchase price of wisdom,
Since he has no heart for it?

17 A friend loves at all times,
And a brother is born for adversity.

18 A man devoid of [c]understanding [d]shakes hands in a pledge,
And becomes [e]surety for his friend.

19 He who loves transgression loves strife,
And he who exalts his gate seeks destruction.

20 He who has a [f]deceitful heart finds no good,
And he who has a perverse tongue falls into evil.

21 He who begets a scoffer does so to his sorrow,
And the father of a fool has no joy.

22 A merry heart [g]does good, like medicine,
But a broken spirit dries the bones.

23 A wicked man accepts a bribe [h]behind the back
To pervert the ways of justice.

24 Wisdom is in the sight of him who has understanding,
But the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth.

25 A foolish son is a grief to his father,
And bitterness to her who bore him.

26 Also, to punish the righteous is not good,
Nor to strike princes for their uprightness.

27 He who has knowledge spares his words,
And a man of understanding is of a calm spirit.
28 Even a fool is counted wise when he holds his peace;
When he shuts his lips, he is considered perceptive.

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 17:1 Or sacrificial meals
  2. Proverbs 17:4 Lit. destructive
  3. Proverbs 17:18 Lit. heart
  4. Proverbs 17:18 Lit. strikes the hands
  5. Proverbs 17:18 guaranty or collateral
  6. Proverbs 17:20 crooked
  7. Proverbs 17:22 Or makes medicine even better
  8. Proverbs 17:23 Under cover, lit. from the bosom
New King James Version (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 17 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Contrast of the Upright and the Wicked

17 Better is a dry morsel and quietness with it
Than a house full of [a]feasting with strife.
A servant who acts wisely will rule over a son who acts shamefully,
And will share in the inheritance among brothers.
The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold,
But the Lord tests hearts.
An evildoer listens to wicked lips;
A [b]liar pays attention to a destructive tongue.
One who mocks the poor taunts his Maker;
One who rejoices at disaster will not go unpunished.
Grandchildren are the crown of the old,
And the glory of sons is their fathers.
[c]Excellent speech is not fitting for a fool,
Much less are lying lips to a prince.
A bribe is a [d]charm in the sight of its owner;
Wherever he turns, he prospers.
One who conceals an offense seeks love,
But one who repeats a matter separates close friends.
10 A rebuke goes deeper into one who has understanding
Than a hundred blows into a fool.
11 A rebellious person seeks only evil,
So a cruel messenger will be sent against him.
12 Let a person meet a bear robbed of her cubs,
Rather than a fool in his foolishness.
13 One who returns evil for good,
Evil will not depart from his house.
14 The beginning of strife is like letting out water,
So abandon the quarrel before it breaks out.
15 One who justifies the wicked and one who condemns the righteous,
Both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord.
16 Why is there money in the hand of a fool to buy wisdom,
When [e]he has no sense?
17 A friend loves at all times,
And a brother is born for adversity.
18 A person lacking in [f]sense shakes hands
And becomes guarantor in the presence of his neighbor.
19 One who loves wrongdoing loves strife;
One who makes his doorway high seeks destruction.
20 One who has a crooked [g]mind finds nothing good,
And one who is [h]corrupted in his language falls into evil.
21 He who fathers a fool does so to his sorrow,
And the father of a fool has no joy.
22 A joyful heart [i]is good medicine,
But a broken spirit dries up the bones.
23 A wicked person accepts a bribe [j]from an inside pocket
To pervert the ways of justice.
24 Wisdom is in the presence of one who has understanding,
But the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth.
25 A foolish son is a grief to his father,
And bitterness to her who gave birth to him.
26 It is also not good to fine the righteous,
Nor to strike the noble for their uprightness.
27 One who withholds his words [k]has knowledge,
And one who has a cool spirit is a person of understanding.
28 Even a fool, when he keeps silent, is considered wise;
When he closes his lips, he is considered prudent.

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 17:1 Lit sacrifices of strife
  2. Proverbs 17:4 Lit falsehood
  3. Proverbs 17:7 Lit A lip of abundance
  4. Proverbs 17:8 Lit stone of favor
  5. Proverbs 17:16 Lit there is no heart
  6. Proverbs 17:18 Lit heart
  7. Proverbs 17:20 Lit heart
  8. Proverbs 17:20 Lit altered in his tongue
  9. Proverbs 17:22 Lit causes good healing
  10. Proverbs 17:23 Lit a fold in a robe; i.e., secretly
  11. Proverbs 17:27 Lit knows
New American Standard Bible (NASB)

New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 17 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Contrast the Upright and the Wicked

17 Better is a dry morsel [of food served] with quietness and peace
Than a house full of feasting [served] with strife and contention.

A wise servant will rule over the [unworthy] son who acts shamefully and brings disgrace [to the family]
And [the worthy servant] will share in the inheritance among the brothers.

The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold,
But the Lord tests hearts.

An evildoer listens closely to wicked lips;
And a liar pays attention to a destructive and malicious tongue.

Whoever mocks the poor taunts his Maker,
And he who rejoices at [another’s] disaster will not go unpunished.

Grandchildren are the crown of aged men,
And the glory of children is their fathers [who live godly lives].

Excellent speech does not benefit a fool [who is spiritually blind],
Much less do lying lips benefit a prince.

A bribe is like a bright, precious stone in the eyes of its owner;
Wherever he turns, he prospers.

He who covers and forgives an offense seeks love,
But he who repeats or gossips about a matter separates intimate friends.
10 
A reprimand goes deeper into one who has understanding and a teachable spirit
Than a hundred lashes into a fool.
11 
A rebellious man seeks only evil;
Therefore a cruel messenger will be sent against him.
12 
Let a man meet a [ferocious] bear robbed of her cubs
Rather than the [angry, narcissistic] fool in his folly.
13 
Whoever returns evil for good,
Evil will not depart from his house.
14 
The beginning of strife is like letting out water [as from a small break in a dam; first it trickles and then it gushes];
Therefore [a]abandon the quarrel before it breaks out and tempers explode.
15 
He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the righteous
Are both repulsive to the Lord.
16 
Why is there money in the hand of a fool to buy wisdom,
When he has no common sense or even a heart for it?
17 
A friend loves at all times,
And a brother is born for adversity.
18 
A man lacking common sense gives a pledge
And becomes guarantor [for the debt of another] in the presence of his neighbor.
19 
He who loves transgression loves strife and is quarrelsome;
He who [proudly] raises his gate seeks destruction [because of his arrogant pride].
20 
He who has a crooked mind finds no good,
And he who is perverted in his language falls into evil.
21 
He who becomes the parent of a fool [who is spiritually blind] does so to his sorrow,
And the father of a fool [who is spiritually blind] has no joy.
22 
A happy heart is good medicine and a joyful mind causes healing,
But a broken spirit dries up the bones.
23 
A wicked man receives a bribe from the [hidden] pocket
To pervert the ways of justice.
24 
[Skillful and godly] wisdom is in the presence of a person of understanding [and he recognizes it],
But the eyes of a [thickheaded] fool are on the ends of the earth.
25 
A foolish son is a grief and anguish to his father
And bitterness to her who gave birth to him.
26 
It is also not good to fine the righteous,
Nor to strike the noble for their uprightness.
27 
He who has knowledge restrains and is careful with his words,
And a man of understanding and wisdom has a cool spirit (self-control, an even temper).
28 
Even a [callous, arrogant] fool, when he keeps silent, is considered wise;
When he closes his lips he is regarded as sensible (prudent, discreet) and a man of understanding.

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 17:14 The ancient rabbis derived from this statement the principle of seeking a settlement before a case comes to court (cf Matt 5:25; Luke 12:58).
Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 17 New International Version (NIV)

17 Better a dry crust with peace and quiet
    than a house full of feasting, with strife.

A prudent servant will rule over a disgraceful son
    and will share the inheritance as one of the family.

The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold,
    but the Lord tests the heart.

A wicked person listens to deceitful lips;
    a liar pays attention to a destructive tongue.

Whoever mocks the poor shows contempt for their Maker;
    whoever gloats over disaster will not go unpunished.

Children’s children are a crown to the aged,
    and parents are the pride of their children.

Eloquent lips are unsuited to a godless fool—
    how much worse lying lips to a ruler!

A bribe is seen as a charm by the one who gives it;
    they think success will come at every turn.

Whoever would foster love covers over an offense,
    but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends.

10 A rebuke impresses a discerning person
    more than a hundred lashes a fool.

11 Evildoers foster rebellion against God;
    the messenger of death will be sent against them.

12 Better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs
    than a fool bent on folly.

13 Evil will never leave the house
    of one who pays back evil for good.

14 Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam;
    so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.

15 Acquitting the guilty and condemning the innocent
    the Lord detests them both.

16 Why should fools have money in hand to buy wisdom,
    when they are not able to understand it?

17 A friend loves at all times,
    and a brother is born for a time of adversity.

18 One who has no sense shakes hands in pledge
    and puts up security for a neighbor.

19 Whoever loves a quarrel loves sin;
    whoever builds a high gate invites destruction.

20 One whose heart is corrupt does not prosper;
    one whose tongue is perverse falls into trouble.

21 To have a fool for a child brings grief;
    there is no joy for the parent of a godless fool.

22 A cheerful heart is good medicine,
    but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

23 The wicked accept bribes in secret
    to pervert the course of justice.

24 A discerning person keeps wisdom in view,
    but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth.

25 A foolish son brings grief to his father
    and bitterness to the mother who bore him.

26 If imposing a fine on the innocent is not good,
    surely to flog honest officials is not right.

27 The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint,
    and whoever has understanding is even-tempered.

28 Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent,
    and discerning if they hold their tongues.

New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Proverbs 17 King James Version (KJV)

17 Better is a dry morsel, and quietness therewith, than an house full of sacrifices with strife.

A wise servant shall have rule over a son that causeth shame, and shall have part of the inheritance among the brethren.

The fining pot is for silver, and the furnace for gold: but the Lord trieth the hearts.

A wicked doer giveth heed to false lips; and a liar giveth ear to a naughty tongue.

Whoso mocketh the poor reproacheth his Maker: and he that is glad at calamities shall not be unpunished.

Children's children are the crown of old men; and the glory of children are their fathers.

Excellent speech becometh not a fool: much less do lying lips a prince.

A gift is as a precious stone in the eyes of him that hath it: whithersoever it turneth, it prospereth.

He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends.

10 A reproof entereth more into a wise man than an hundred stripes into a fool.

11 An evil man seeketh only rebellion: therefore a cruel messenger shall be sent against him.

12 Let a bear robbed of her whelps meet a man, rather than a fool in his folly.

13 Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house.

14 The beginning of strife is as when one letteth out water: therefore leave off contention, before it be meddled with.

15 He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the Lord.

16 Wherefore is there a price in the hand of a fool to get wisdom, seeing he hath no heart to it?

17 A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

18 A man void of understanding striketh hands, and becometh surety in the presence of his friend.

19 He loveth transgression that loveth strife: and he that exalteth his gate seeketh destruction.

20 He that hath a froward heart findeth no good: and he that hath a perverse tongue falleth into mischief.

21 He that begetteth a fool doeth it to his sorrow: and the father of a fool hath no joy.

22 A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.

23 A wicked man taketh a gift out of the bosom to pervert the ways of judgment.

24 Wisdom is before him that hath understanding; but the eyes of a fool are in the ends of the earth.

25 A foolish son is a grief to his father, and bitterness to her that bare him.

26 Also to punish the just is not good, nor to strike princes for equity.

27 He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit.

28 Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.

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