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Proverbs 26 King James Version (KJV)

26 As snow in summer, and as rain in harvest, so honour is not seemly for a fool.

As the bird by wandering, as the swallow by flying, so the curse causeless shall not come.

A whip for the horse, a bridle for the ass, and a rod for the fool's back.

Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.

Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.

He that sendeth a message by the hand of a fool cutteth off the feet, and drinketh damage.

The legs of the lame are not equal: so is a parable in the mouth of fools.

As he that bindeth a stone in a sling, so is he that giveth honour to a fool.

As a thorn goeth up into the hand of a drunkard, so is a parable in the mouths of fools.

10 The great God that formed all things both rewardeth the fool, and rewardeth transgressors.

11 As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.

12 Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him.

13 The slothful man saith, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets.

14 As the door turneth upon his hinges, so doth the slothful upon his bed.

15 The slothful hideth his hand in his bosom; it grieveth him to bring it again to his mouth.

16 The sluggard is wiser in his own conceit than seven men that can render a reason.

17 He that passeth by, and meddleth with strife belonging not to him, is like one that taketh a dog by the ears.

18 As a mad man who casteth firebrands, arrows, and death,

19 So is the man that deceiveth his neighbour, and saith, Am not I in sport?

20 Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.

21 As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire; so is a contentious man to kindle strife.

22 The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.

23 Burning lips and a wicked heart are like a potsherd covered with silver dross.

24 He that hateth dissembleth with his lips, and layeth up deceit within him;

25 When he speaketh fair, believe him not: for there are seven abominations in his heart.

26 Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the whole congregation.

27 Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him.

28 A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.

Proverbs 26 New King James Version (NKJV)

Honor Is Not Fitting for a Fool

26 As snow in summer and rain in harvest,
So honor is not fitting for a fool.

Like a flitting sparrow, like a flying swallow,
So a curse without cause shall not alight.

A whip for the horse,
A bridle for the donkey,
And a rod for the fool’s back.
Do not answer a fool according to his folly,
Lest you also be like him.
Answer a fool according to his folly,
Lest he be wise in his own eyes.
He who sends a message by the hand of a fool
Cuts off his own feet and drinks violence.
Like the legs of the lame that hang limp
Is a proverb in the mouth of fools.
Like one who binds a stone in a sling
Is he who gives honor to a fool.
Like a thorn that goes into the hand of a drunkard
Is a proverb in the mouth of fools.
10 [a]The great God who formed everything
Gives the fool his hire and the transgressor his wages.
11 As a dog returns to his own vomit,
So a fool repeats his folly.
12 Do you see a man wise in his own eyes?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.

13 The lazy man says, “There is a lion in the road!
A fierce lion is in the [b]streets!”
14 As a door turns on its hinges,
So does the lazy man on his bed.
15 The lazy man buries his hand in the [c]bowl;
It wearies him to bring it back to his mouth.
16 The lazy man is wiser in his own eyes
Than seven men who can answer sensibly.

17 He who passes by and meddles in a quarrel not his own
Is like one who takes a dog by the ears.

18 Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death,
19 Is the man who deceives his neighbor,
And says, “I was only joking!”

20 Where there is no wood, the fire goes out;
And where there is no [d]talebearer, strife ceases.
21 As charcoal is to burning coals, and wood to fire,
So is a contentious man to kindle strife.
22 The words of a [e]talebearer are like [f]tasty trifles,
And they go down into the [g]inmost body.

23 Fervent lips with a wicked heart
Are like earthenware covered with silver dross.

24 He who hates, disguises it with his lips,
And lays up deceit within himself;
25 When [h]he speaks kindly, do not believe him,
For there are seven abominations in his heart;
26 Though his hatred is covered by deceit,
His wickedness will be revealed before the assembly.

27 Whoever digs a pit will fall into it,
And he who rolls a stone will have it roll back on him.

28 A lying tongue hates those who are crushed by it,
And a flattering mouth works ruin.

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 26:10 Heb. difficult in v. 10; ancient and modern translators differ greatly
  2. Proverbs 26:13 Or plazas, squares
  3. Proverbs 26:15 LXX, Syr. bosom; Tg., Vg. armpit
  4. Proverbs 26:20 gossip or slanderer, lit. whisperer
  5. Proverbs 26:22 gossip or slanderer
  6. Proverbs 26:22 A Jewish tradition wounds
  7. Proverbs 26:22 Lit. rooms of the belly
  8. Proverbs 26:25 Lit. his voice is gracious
New King James Version (NKJV)

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

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