Easy Read Study Bible                                         Front Page


(Return to Old Testament Contents)


FRAMEWORKS: Proverbs 5: Warnings against adultery


[Preliminary Comments: Yet again Solomon appeals to his son[s] to listen and learn [v.1,2]. His focus is a second warning [see also 2:16-19] against the promiscuous woman who could lead him astray [v.3-8] and who could cause him irreparable harm [v.9-14]. To contrast that, he calls for contentment and faithfulness to the wife at home [v.15-19] and makes a final plea to stay away from such a woman [v.20-23]. In he light of the promiscuous behaviour taken as normal in the twenty-first century in the West, this may seem somewhat dated, yet the warnings are exactly the same today as were then. as many have learned to their cost. The hint at negativity in old-age is especially true.]



PART 1: v.1,2: The call to listen & learn


v.1 Again Solomon's call to his son to listen and take in


v.1  My son, pay attention to my wisdom,
    turn your ear to my words of insight,
v.2  that you may maintain discretion
    and your lips may preserve knowledge.


PART 2: v.3-8: Beware the Promiscuous Woman


v.3-6 His particular concern is the promiscuous woman


v.3  For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey,
    and her speech is smoother than oil;
v.4  but in the end she is bitter as gall,
    sharp as a double-edged sword.
v.5  Her feet go down to death;
    her steps lead straight to the grave.
v.6  She gives no thought to the way of life;
    her paths wander aimlessly, but she does not know it.


v.7,8 He makes a wider appeal to his sons

v.7  Now then, my sons, listen to me;
    do not turn aside from what I say.
v.8  Keep to a path far from her,
    do not go near the door of her house,


PART 3: v.9-14: The harm that could follow


v.9,10 He warns of possible outcomes


v.9  lest you lose your honour to others
    and your dignity to one who is cruel,
v.10  lest strangers feast on your wealth
    and your toil enrich the house of another.

v.11-14 He warns about what they could feel in old age


v.11  At the end of your life you will groan,
    when your flesh and body are spent.
v.12  You will say, ‘How I hated discipline!
    How my heart spurned correction!
v.13  I would not obey my teachers
    or turn my ear to my instructors.
v.14  And I was soon in serious trouble
    in the assembly of God's people.'



PART 4: v.15-19: A call to contentment at home


v.15-17 Be content with blessings found in your own home


v.15  Drink water from your own cistern,
    running water from your own well.
v.16  Should your springs overflow in the streets,
    your streams of water in the public squares?
v.17  Let them be yours alone,
    never to be shared with strangers.

v.18,19 Be content with, and remain loyal to, the love of your wife


v.18  May your fountain be blessed,
    and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.
v.19  A loving doe, a graceful deer –
    may her breasts satisfy you always,
    may you ever be intoxicated with her love.


PART 5: v.20-23: A final call to stay away from her


v.20,21 Stay away from such a woman for God is watching you


v.20  Why, my son, be intoxicated with another man's wife?
    Why embrace the bosom of a wayward woman?

v.21  For your ways are in full view of the Lord,
    and he examines all your paths.

v.22,23 Lack of self-control in the wicked will destroy them


v.22  The evil deeds of the wicked ensnare them;
    the cords of their sins hold them fast.
v.23  For lack of discipline they will die,
    led astray by their own great folly.




Continue to Proverbs 6