Sayings of Agur
1 The sayings of Agur, Son of Jakeh, of Massa.
2 He says, “My God, my God, I am worn-out and weary. Too stupid to be human, I am devoid of intelli gence; 3 I have not acquired wisdom or grasped the knowledge of the Holy One.”
4 Who has ascended the heavens and descended? Who has gathered the wind in his hands? Who has encircled the waters with his cloak? Who has established the limits of the earth? What is his name or the name of his son?
4 Do you know?
5 Every word of God is true, he is a shield in whom man can find refuge. 6 Add nothing to his words lest he rebuke you and take you for a liar.
7 O God, two things I beg of you, do not deny me them before I die. 8 Keep lying and falsehood far away from me, give me neither poverty nor riches. Give me just as much food as I need lest, 9 satisfied, I deny you and say, “Who is Yahweh?” Or else, out of necessity, I steal and profane the name of my God.
10 Do not accuse a slave to his master’s face lest he curse you and you have to pay.
11 What a people are those who curse their father and do not bless their mother, 12 who consider themselves pure but their sins have not been cleansed! 13 They have a haughty look and disdainful eye; 14 their teeth are like daggers and their fangs, like blades to devour the weak of the land and the poor of the people.
15 The leech has two daughters, “Give me!” and “Give me!”
16 There are three insatiable things and four which never say, “Enough”: the grave, the sterile womb, the earth longing for water and the fire which never cries, “Enough.”
17 The eye which challenges a father and despises his aging mother, will be gouged out by the ravens of the valley and devoured by the eagles.
18 There are three things which I cannot comprehend and four which I do not under stand: 19 the way of the eagle through the sky, the way of the snake on the rock, the way of the ship on high seas and the way of the human being within the mother.
20 What can I say of the adulterous wo man? She eats, and having wiped her mouth, she says, “I have done nothing wrong.”
21 Three things make the earth trem ble; there are four which it cannot withstand: 22 the slave who becomes king, the fool stuffed with bread, 23 the unbearable woman who marries and the maid who inherits from her mistress.
24 There are four tiny creatures on the earth that are among the wisest of the wise: 25 the ants that are without strength, but in summer make sure of their supplies; 26 the rock-rabbits that are without vigor, but make their home in the rocks; 27 the locusts that have no king, but move forward in organized groups; 28 the lizard which can be caught by hand, but lives in the palaces of kings.
29 Three things have a stately step and four have a noble bearing: 30 the lion, the bravest of animals, that retreats before nothing; 31 the cock that struts proudly among the hens; the he-goat that leads his flock, and the king at the head of his army.
32 If you have been foolish enough to get angry and afterwards regret it, cover your mouth with your hand. 33 Since by churning the milk butter is produced, by squeezing the nose blood flows, and by stirring up anger arguments arise.