*Care of the Poor and Needy*
1. My son, do not deprive the poor of his living,
And do not keep eyes in need waiting.
2. Do not grieve a soul who is hungry,
Nor provoke to anger a man in despair.
3. Do not trouble a heart that was made resentful,
And do not put off the gift of a man in need.
4. Do not reject a supplicant who is afflicted
Nor turn your face away from a poor man.
5. Do not turn your eye away from a needy man,
And do not give a man occasion to curse you;
6. For if he curses you in the bitterness of his soul,
His Maker will hear his prayer.
7. Make yourself beloved in the assembly
And bow your head to a great man.
8. Incline your ear to a poor man
And answer him peaceably and with gentleness.
9. Deliver a person who has been wronged
From the hand of the wrongdoer,
And do not be fainthearted when you judge his case.
10. Be like a father to orphans
And like a husband to their mother;
And you will be like a son of the Most High,
And He will love you more than your mother.+
*Pursuit of Wisdom*
11. Wisdom exalts her children
And lays hold of those who seek her.+
12. Whoever loves her loves life,
And those who come to her early in the morning
Will be filled with gladness.
13. He who holds fast to her will inherit glory,
And the Lord blesses every place she enters.
14. Those who serve her will minister to the Holy One.
And the Lord loves those who love her.
15. He who obeys her will judge the nations;
And he that gives heed to her will live with confidence.
16. If he trusts in her, he will inherit her.
And his posterity will be in possession of her.
17. At first she will walk with him on disturbing paths
And bring fear and dread upon him;
And she will torment him with her discipline
Until she can trust his soul
And test him with her ordinances.
18. Then she will come straight back to him,
And will gladden him, and reveal her secrets to him.
19. If he wanders away, she will forsake him
And hand him over to his ruin.
*Shame and Sin*
20. Watch for a proper opportunity and keep yourself from evil;
And do not bring shame upon your soul.
21. For there is a shame that brings sin,
And there is a shame which is glory and grace.
22. Do not show partiality to someone to your own harm,
And do not let your respect cause another to fall.
23. Do not withhold a word in time of need;
24. For wisdom is made known be a word,
And instruction by a word of the tongue.
25. Do not speak against the truth,
And do not be put to shame by your ignorance.
26. Do not be ashamed to confess your sins,
And do not exercise force against the current of a river.
27. Do not subject yourself to a foolish man,
And do not show partiality to a ruler.
28. Fight to the death for the truth,
And the Lord God will fight for you.
29. Do not be rash with your tongue
And sluggish and neglectful in your works.
30. Do not be like a lion in your home
And act in pretense with your servants.
31. Do not let your hand be extended to receive
And shut when you should repay.
Notes from OSB:
+4:10 - The care of the poor, the needy, and the orphan is nothing short of Christlike: you will be like a son of the Most High.
+4:11-19 - Gaining wisdom is not passive or automatic. Note the action verbs: seek (v. 11); loves (v. 12); come (v. 12); holds fast (v. 13); serve (v. 14); obeys (v. 15); gives heed (v. 15); trusts (v. 16).