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English Standard Version
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Warning Against Adultery

wMy son, be attentive to my wisdom;

xincline your ear to my understanding,

that you may keep ydiscretion,

and your lips may zguard knowledge.

For the lips of aa forbidden1 woman drip honey,

and her speech2 is bsmoother than oil,

but in the end she is cbitter as dwormwood,

esharp as fa two-edged sword.

Her feet ggo down to death;

her steps follow the path to3 Sheol;

she hdoes not ponder the path of life;

her ways wander, and she does not know it.

And inow, O sons, listen to me,

and do not depart from the words of my mouth.

Keep your way far from her,

and do not go near the door of her house,

lest you give your honor to others

and your years to the merciless,

10  lest strangers take their fill of your strength,

and your jlabors go to the house of a foreigner,

11  and at the end of your life you kgroan,

when your flesh and body are consumed,

12  and you say, l“How I hated discipline,

and my heart mdespised reproof!

13  I did not listen to the voice of my teachers

or incline my ear to my instructors.

14  nI am at the brink of utter ruin

in the assembled congregation.”

15  Drink owater from your own cistern,

flowing water from your own well.

16  Should your psprings be scattered abroad,

streams of water qin the streets?

17  rLet them be for yourself alone,

and not for strangers with you.

18  Let your ofountain be blessed,

and srejoice in tthe wife of your youth,

19  a lovely udeer, a graceful doe.

Let her breasts vfill you at all times with delight;

be intoxicated4 always in her love.

20  Why should you be intoxicated, my son, with wa forbidden woman

and embrace the bosom of wan adulteress?5

21  For xa man’s ways are ybefore the eyes of the Lord,

and he zponders6 all his paths.

22  The ainiquities of the wicked bensnare him,

and he is held fast in the cords of his sin.

23  cHe dies for lack of discipline,

and because of his great folly he is dled astray.

ESV

About English Standard Version

The English Standard Version™ is founded on the conviction that the words of the Bible are the very words of God. And because the words themselves—not just the thoughts or ideas—are inspired by God, each word must be translated with the greatest precision and accuracy. As Jesus Himself stressed, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4).

This passion for God’s Word is the driving force behind the translation of the ESV™ Bible. The English Standard Version™ does not try to “improve” on the original in light of today’s culture or by using trendy language. Instead, the utmost care has been taken to express God’s Word in English that most closely captures the meaning of the original, with understandability, beauty, and impact.

Copyright

The English Standard Version™ is founded on the conviction that the words of the Bible are the very words of God. And because the words themselves—not just the thoughts or ideas—are inspired by God, each word must be translated with the greatest precision and accuracy. As Jesus Himself stressed, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4).

This passion for God’s Word is the driving force behind the translation of the ESV™ Bible. The English Standard Version™ does not try to “improve” on the original in light of today’s culture or by using trendy language. Instead, the utmost care has been taken to express God’s Word in English that most closely captures the meaning of the original, with understandability, beauty, and impact.

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