Proverbs, CHAPTER 31
The words of Lemuel, king of Massa, the instruction his mother taught him:
What are you doing, my son!
what are you doing, son of my womb;
what are you doing, son of my vows!
Do not give your vigor to women,
or your strength to those who ruin kings.
It is not for kings, Lemuel,
not for kings to drink wine;
strong drink is not for princes,
Lest in drinking they forget what has been decreed,
and violate the rights of any who are in need.
Give strong drink to anyone who is perishing,
and wine to the embittered;
When they drink, they will forget their misery,
and think no more of their troubles.
Open your mouth in behalf of the mute,
and for the rights of the destitute;
Open your mouth, judge justly,
defend the needy and the poor!
Who can find a woman of worth?
Far beyond jewels is her value.
Her husband trusts her judgment;
he does not lack income.
She brings him profit, not loss,
all the days of her life.
She seeks out wool and flax
and weaves with skillful hands.
Like a merchant fleet,
she secures her provisions from afar.
She rises while it is still night,
and distributes food to her household,
a portion to her maidservants.
She picks out a field and acquires it;
from her earnings she plants a vineyard.
She girds herself with strength;
she exerts her arms with vigor.
She enjoys the profit from her dealings;
her lamp is never extinguished at night.
She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her fingers ply the spindle.
She reaches out her hands to the poor,
and extends her arms to the needy.
She is not concerned for her household when it snows―
all her charges are doubly clothed.
She makes her own coverlets;
fine linen and purple are her clothing.
Her husband is prominent at the city gates
as he sits with the elders of the land.
She makes garments and sells them,
and stocks the merchants with belts.
She is clothed with strength and dignity,
and laughs at the days to come.
She opens her mouth in wisdom;
kindly instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household,
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband, too, praises her:
“Many are the women of proven worth,
but you have excelled them all.”
Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting;
the woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
Acclaim her for the work of her hands,
and let her deeds praise her at the city gates.