31 The sayingss of King Lemuel—an inspired utterance his mother taught him.
Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!t
3 Do not spend your strengtha on women,
your vigor on those who ruin kings.u
it is not for kings to drink wine,v
not for rulers to crave beer,
and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.
winey for those who are in anguish!
7 Let them drinkz and forget their poverty
and remember their misery no more.
8 Speaka up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
for the rights of all who are destitute.
defend the rights of the poor and needy.b
She is worth far more than rubies.
11 Her husbande has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.f
all the days of her life.
and works with eager hands.g
bringing her food from afar.
she provides food for her family
and portions for her female servants.
out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
her arms are strong for her tasks.
and her lamp does not go out at night.
and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
and extends her hands to the needy.h
for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
where he takes his seat among the eldersi of the land.
and supplies the merchants with sashes.
she can laugh at the days to come.
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.j
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
her husband also, and he praises her:
but you surpass them all.”
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
and let her works bring her praisek at the city gate.
Verses 10–31 are an acrostic poem, the verses of which begin with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet.