31 The words of Lemʹu·el* the king, the weighty message+ that his mother gave to him in correction:+ 2 What [am I saying], O son of mine,* and what, O son of my belly,+ and what, O son of my vows?+ 3 Do not give your vital energy to women,+ nor your ways to [what leads to] wiping out kings.+ 4 It is not for kings, O Lemʹu·el, it is not for kings to drink wine or for high officials [to say:] “Where is intoxicating liquor?”+ 5 that one may not drink and forget what is decreed and pervert the cause of any of the sons of affliction.+ 6 Give intoxicating liquor, YOU people, to the one about to perish+ and wine to those who are bitter of soul.+ 7 Let one drink and forget one’s poverty, and let one remember one’s own trouble no more. 8 Open your mouth for the speechless one,+ in the cause of all those passing away.*+ 9 Open your mouth, judge righteously and plead the cause of the afflicted one and the poor one.+ א [ʼAʹleph] 10 A capable wife who can find?+ Her value is far more than that of corals. ב [Behth] 11 In her the heart of her owner* has put trust, and there is no gain lacking.+ ג [Giʹmel] 12 She has rewarded him with good, and not bad, all the days of her life.+ ד [Daʹleth] 13 She has sought wool and linen, and she works at whatever is the delight of her hands.+ ה [Heʼ] 14 She has proved to be like the ships of a merchant.+ From far away she brings in her food.* ו [Waw] 15 She also gets up while it is still night,+ and gives food* to her household and the prescribed portion to her young women.+ ז [Zaʹyin] 16 She has considered a field and proceeded to obtain it;+ from the fruitage of her hands she has planted a vineyard.+ ח [Chehth] 17 She has girded her hips with strength, and she invigorates her arms.+ ט [Tehth] 18 She has sensed that her trading is good; her lamp does not go out at night.+ י [Yohdh] 19 Her hands she has thrust out to the distaff, and her own hands take hold of the spindle.+ כ [Kaph] 20 Her palm she has stretched out to the afflicted one, and her hands she has thrust out to the poor one.+ ל [Laʹmedh] 21 She does not fear for her household because of the snow, for all her household are clothed with double garments.*+ מ [Mem] 22 Coverlets+ she has made for herself. Her clothing is of linen and wool dyed reddish purple.+ נ [Nun] 23 Her owner+ is someone known in the gates,+ when he sits down with the older men* of the land. ס [Saʹmekh] 24 She has made even undergarments+ and proceeded to sell [them], and belts she has given to the tradesmen. ע [ʽAʹyin] 25 Strength and splendor are her clothing,+ and she laughs at a future day.+ פ [Peʼ] 26 Her mouth she has opened in wisdom,+ and the law of loving-kindness* is upon her tongue.+ צ [Tsa·dhehʹ] 27 She is watching over the goings-on of her household, and the bread of laziness* she does not eat.+ ק [Qohph] 28 Her sons have risen up and proceeded to pronounce her happy;+ her owner [rises up], and he praises her.+ ר [Rehsh] 29 There are many daughters+ that have shown capableness, but you—you have ascended above them all.+ ש [Shin] 30 Charm may be false,+ and prettiness may be vain;+ [but] the woman that fears Jehovah is the one that procures praise for herself.+ ת [Taw] 31 GIVE her of the fruitage of her hands,+ and let her works praise her even in the gates.*+
^ Meaning “Belonging to God.”
^ Lit., “all the sons of the passing away.”
^ “Her owner.” Heb., baʽ·lahʹ.
^ Or, “her bread.” Heb., lach·mahʹ (from leʹchem, as in vs 27).
^ Lit., “things carried off.” Heb., teʹreph.
^ “Double garments,” by a slight change in vowel pointing, to agree with LXX; M, “scarlet garments.”
^ Or, “elders.”
^ Or, “loyal love.”
^ “And the bread of laziness.” Heb., weleʹchem ʽats·luthʹ.
^ Some ed. of the Heb. text display the trigrammaton, or three letters, Chehth, Zaʹyin, Qohph (ח ז ק) that stand as King Hezekiah’s signature to the copy-work done by his scribes to signify that the work had been completed.