Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labor shall increase.
– Proverbs 13:11
The word for vanity means empty. It is contrasted in this proverb with labor, which indicates work with the hands. So vanity here doesn’t exclude illegitimacy but the contrast speaks more to haste and trying to gain wealth without working for it. It reminds us of those always attracted by the offer of making a lot of money with little time or effort. Other similar proverbs speak of haste instead of vanity (Proverbs 20:21; 21:5). The general tenor of Proverbs teaches that diligence, hard work, and good stewardship increases wealth without the attendant sorrows of the vain pursuers (Proverbs 27:23-27).