1Is not Wisdom cal ing? Is not Understanding raising her voice? 2On the heights overlooking the road, at the crossways, she takes her stand; 3by the gates, at the entrance to the city, on the access-roads, she cries out, 4'I am cal ing to you, al people, my words are addressed to al humanity. 5Simpletons, learn how to behave, fools, come to your senses. 6Listen, I have something important to tel you, when I speak, my words are right. 7My mouth proclaims the truth, for evil is abhorrent to my lips. 8Al the words from my mouth are upright, nothing false there, nothing crooked, 9everything plain, if you can understand, straight, if you have acquired knowledge. 10Accept my discipline rather than silver, and knowledge of me in preference to finest gold. 11For Wisdom is more precious than jewels, and nothing else is so worthy of desire. 12'I, Wisdom, share house with Discretion, I am mistress of the art of thought. 13(Fear of Yahweh means hatred of evil.) I hate pride and arrogance, wicked behaviour and a lyingmouth. 14To me belong good advice and prudence, I am perception: power is mine! 15By me monarchs rule and princes decree what is right; 16by me rulers govern, so do nobles, the lawful authorities. 17I love those who love me; whoever searches eagerly for me finds me. 18With me are riches and honour, lasting wealth and saving justice. 19The fruit I give is better than gold, even the finest, the return I make is better than pure silver. 20I walk in the way of uprightness in the path of justice, 21to endow my friends with my wealth and to fil their treasuries. 22'Yahweh created me, first-fruits of his fashioning, before the oldest of his works. 23From everlasting, I was firmly set, from the beginning, before the earth came into being. 24The deep was not, when I was born, nor were the springs with their abounding waters. 25Before the mountains were settled, before the hil s, I came to birth; 26before he had made the earth, the countryside, and the first elements of the world. 27When he fixed the heavens firm, I was there, when he drew a circle on the surface of the deep, 28when he thickened the clouds above, when the sources of the deep began to swel , 29when he assigned the sea its boundaries -- and the waters will not encroach on the shore -- when hetraced the foundations of the earth, 30I was beside the master craftsman, delighting him day after day, ever at play in his presence, 31at play everywhere on his earth, delighting to be with the children of men. 32'And now, my children, listen to me. Happy are those who keep my ways. 33Listen to instruction and become wise, do not reject it. 34Blessed, whoever listens to me, who day after day keeps watch at my gates to guard my portals. 35For whoever finds me finds life, and obtains the favour of Yahweh; 36but whoever misses me harms himself, al who hate me are in love with death.'
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