The Words of Agur
1The words of Agur the son of Jakeh, the oracle.
The man declares to Ithiel, to Ithiel and Ucal:
2Surely I am more stupid than any man,
And I do not have the understanding of a man.
3Neither have I learned wisdom,
Nor do I have the knowledge of the Holy One.
4Who has ascended into heaven and descended?
Who has gathered the wind in His fists?
Who has wrapped the waters in His garment?
Who has established all the ends of the earth?
What is His name or His son’s name?
Surely you know!
5Every word of God is tested;
He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.
6Do not add to His words
Lest He reprove you, and you be proved a liar.
7Two things I asked of Thee,
Do not refuse me before I die:
8Keep deception and lies far from me,
Give me neither poverty nor riches;
Feed me with the food that is my portion,
9Lest I be full and deny Thee and say, “Who is the LORD?”
Or lest I be in want and steal,
And profane the name of my God.
10Do not slander a slave to his master,
Lest he curse you and you be found guilty.
11There is a kind of man who curses his father,
And does not bless his mother.
12There is a kind who is pure in his own eyes,
Yet is not washed from his filthiness.
13There is a kind—oh how lofty are his eyes!
And his eyelids are raised in arrogance.
14There is a kind of man whose teeth are like swords,
And his jaw teeth like knives,
To devour the afflicted from the earth,
And the needy from among men.
15The leech has two daughters,
There are three things that will not be satisfied,
Four that will not say, “Enough”:
16Sheol, and the barren womb,
Earth that is never satisfied with water,
And fire that never says, “Enough.”
17The eye that mocks a father,
And scorns a mother,
The ravens of the valley will pick it out,
And the young eagles will eat it.
18There are three things which are too wonderful for me,
Four which I do not understand:
19The way of an eagle in the sky,
The way of a serpent on a rock,
The way of a ship in the middle of the sea,
And the way of a man with a maid.
20This is the way of an adulterous woman:
She eats and wipes her mouth,
And says, “I have done no wrong.”
21Under three things the earth quakes,
And under four, it cannot bear up:
22Under a slave when he becomes king,
And a fool when he is satisfied with food,
23Under an unloved woman when she gets a husband,
And a maidservant when she supplants her mistress.
24Four things are small on the earth,
But they are exceedingly wise:
25The ants are not a strong folk,
But they prepare their food in the summer;
26The badgers are not mighty folk,
Yet they make their houses in the rocks;
27The locusts have no king,
Yet all of them go out in ranks;
28The lizard you may grasp with the hands,
Yet it is in kings’ palaces.
29There are three things which are stately in their march,
Even four which are stately when they walk:
30The lion which is mighty among beasts
And does not retreat before any,
31The strutting cock, the male goat also,
And a king when his army is with him.
32If you have been foolish in exalting yourself
Or if you have plotted evil, put your hand on your mouth.
33For the churning of milk produces butter,
And pressing the nose brings forth blood;
So the churning of anger produces strife.