22:22. So also a fearful heart in the imagination of a fool shall not resist against the violence of fear.
22:23. As a fearful heart in the thought of a fool at all times will not fear, so neither shall he that continues always in the commandments of God.
22:24. He that pricks the eye, brings out tears: and he that pricks the heart, brings forth resentment.
22:25. He that flings a stone at birds, shall drive them away: so he that upbraids his friend, breaks friendship.
22:26. Although you have drawn a sword at a friend, despair not: for there may be a returning. To a friend,
22:27. If you have opened a sad mouth, fear not, for there may be a reconciliation: except upbraiding, and reproach, and pride, and disclosing of secrets, or a treacherous wound: for in all these cases a friend will flee away.
22:28. Keep fidelity with a friend in his poverty, that in his prosperity also you mayst rejoice.
22:29. In the time of his trouble continue faithful to him, that you mayst also be heir with him in his inheritance.
22:30. As the vapor of a chimney, and the smoke of the fire goes up before the fire: so also injurious words, and reproaches, and threats, before blood.
22:31. I will not be ashamed to salute a friend, neither will I hide myself from his face: and if any evil happen to me by him, I will bear it.
22:32. But everyone that shall hear it, will beware of him.
22:33. Who will set a guard before my mouth, and a sure seal upon my lips, that I fall not by them, and that my tongue destroy me not?
Sirach Chapter 23
A prayer for grace to flee sin: cautions against profane swearing and other vices.
23:1. O Lord, father, and sovereign ruler of my life, leave me not to their counsel: nor suffer me to fall by them.
By them. . .Viz., the tongue and the lips, mentioned in the last verse of the foregoing chapter.
23:2. Who will set scourges over my thoughts, and the discipline of wisdom over my heart, that they spare me not in their ignorances, and that their sins may not appear:
That they spare me not in their ignorances, etc. . .That is, that the scourges and discipline of wisdom may restrain the ignorances, that is, the slips and offenses which are usually committed by the tongue and the lips.
23:3. Lest my ignorances increase, and my offenses be multiplied, and my sins abound, and I fall before my adversaries, and my enemy rejoice over me?
23:4. O Lord, father, and God of my life, do not leave me to their devices.
23:5. Do not give me haughtiness of my eyes, and turn away from me all coveting.
23:6. Take from me the greediness of the belly, and do not let the lusts of the flesh take hold of me, and do not give me over to a shameless and foolish mind.
23:7. Hear, O children, the discipline of the mouth, and he that will keep it shall not perish by his lips, nor be brought to fall into most wicked works.
23:8. A sinner is caught in his own vanity, and the proud and the evil speakers shall fall thereby.
23:9. Do not let your mouth be accustomed to swearing: for in it there are many falls.
23:10. And do not let the naming of God be usual in your mouth, and meddle not with the names of saints, for you shall not escape free from them.
23:11. For as a slave daily put to the question is never without a blue mark, so everyone that swears and names shall not be wholly pure from sin.
23:12. A man that swears much, shall be filled with iniquity, and a scourge shall not depart from his house.
23:13. And if he make it void, his sin shall be upon him, and if he dissemble it, he offends double:
23:14. And if he swear in vain, he shall not be justified: for his house shall be filled with his punishment.
23:15. There is also another speech opposite to death, let it not be found in the inheritance of Jacob.
23:16. For from the merciful all these things shall be taken away, and they shall not wallow in sins.
23:17. Do not let your mouth be accustomed to indiscreet speech: for therein is the word of sin.
23:18. Remember your father and your mother, for you sittest in the midst of great men:
23:19. Lest God forget you in their sight, and you, by your daily custom be infatuated and suffer reproach: and wish that you hadst not been born, and curse the day of your nativity.
23:20. The man that is accustomed to opprobrious words, will never be corrected all the days of his life.
23:21. Two sorts of men multiply sins, and the third bringeth wrath and destruction.
23:22. A hot soul is a burning fire, it will never be quenched, till it devour some thing.
23:23. And a man that is wicked in the mouth of his flesh, will not leave off till he has kindled a fire.
23:25. Every man that passes beyond his own bed, despising his own soul, and saying: Who sees me?
23:26. Darkness surrounds me, and the walls cover me, and no man sees me: whom do I fear? The most High will not remember my sins.
23:27. And he does not understand that his eye sees all things, for such a man's fear drives him from the fear of God, and the eyes of men fearing him:
23:28. And he does not know that the eyes of the Lord are far brighter than the sun, beholding round about all the ways of men, and the bottom of the deep, and looking into the hearts of men, into the most hidden parts.
23:29. For all things were known to the Lord God, before they were created: so also after they were perfected he beholdeth all things.
23:30. This man shall be punished in the streets of the city, and he shall be chased as a colt: and where he suspected not, he shall be taken.
23:31. And he shall be in disgrace with all men, because he understood not the fear of the Lord.
23:32. So every woman also that leaves her husband, and brings in an heir by another:
23:33. For first she has been unfaithful to the law of the most High: and secondly, she has offended against her husband: thirdly, she has
*** has gotten her children of another man.
23:34. This woman shall be brought into the assembly, and inquisition shall be made of her children.
23:35. Her children shall not take root, and her branches shall bring forth no fruit.
23:36. She shall leave her memory to be cursed, and her infamy shall not be blotted out.
23:37. And they that remain shall know, that there is nothing better than the fear of God: and that there is nothing sweeter than to have regard to the commandments of the Lord.
23:38. It is great glory to follow the Lord: for length of days shall be received from him.
Sirach Chapter 24
Wisdom praiseth herself: her origin, her dwelling, her dignity, and her fruits.
24:1. Wisdom shall praise her own self, and shall be honored in God, and shall glory in the midst of her people,
24:2. And shall open her mouth in the assemblies of the most High, and shall glorify herself in the sight of his power,
24:3. And in the midst of her own people she shall be exalted, and shall be admired in the holy assembly.
24:4. And in the multitude of the elect she shall have praise, and among the blessed she shall be blessed, saying:
24:5. I came out of the mouth of the most High, the firstborn before all creatures:
24:6. I made that in the heavens there should rise light that never fails, and as a cloud I covered all the earth:
24:7. I dwelt in the highest places, and my throne is in a pillar of a cloud.
24:8. I alone have compassed the circuit of heaven, and have penetrated into the bottom of the deep, and have walked in the waves of the sea,
24:9. And have stood in all the earth: and in every people,
24:10. And in every nation I have had the chief rule:
24:11. And by my power I have trodden under my feet the hearts of all the high and low: and in all these I sought rest, and I shall abide in the inheritance of the Lord.
24:12. Then the creator of all things commanded, and said to me: and he that made me, rested in my tabernacle,
24:13. And he said to me: Let your dwelling be in Jacob, and your inheritance in Israel, and take root in my elect.
24:14. From the beginning, and before the world, was I created, and unto the world to come I shall not cease to be, and in the holy dwelling place I have ministered before him.
24:15. And so was I established in Zion, and in the holy city likewise I rested, and my power was in Jerusalem.
24:16. And I took root in an honorable people, and in the portion of my God his inheritance, and my abode is in the full assembly of saints.
24:17. I was exalted like a cedar in Libanus, and as a cypress tree on mount Zion.
24:18. I was exalted like a palm tree in Cades, and as a rose plant in Jericho:
24:19. As a fair olive tree in the plains, and as a plane tree by the water in the streets, was I exalted.
24:20. I gave a sweet smell like cinnamon, and aromatical balm: I yielded a sweet odor like the best myrrh:
24:21. And I perfumed my dwelling as storax, and galbanum, and onyx, and aloes, and as the frankincense not cut, and my odor is as the purest balm.
24:22. I have stretched out my branches as the turpentine tree, and my branches are of honor and grace.
24:23. As the vine I have brought forth a pleasant odor: and my flowers are the fruit of honor and riches.
24:24. I am the mother of fair love, and of fear, and of knowledge, and of holy hope.
24:25. In me is all grace of the way and of the truth, in me is all hope of life and of virtue.
24:26. Come over to me, all that desire me, and be filled with my fruits.
24:27. For my spirit is sweet above honey, and my inheritance above honey and the honeycomb.
24:28. My memory is unto everlasting generations.
24:29. They that eat me, shall yet hunger: and they that drink me, shall yet thirst.
24:30. He that hearkeneth to me, shall not be confounded: and they that work by me, shall not sin.
24:31. They that explain me shall have life everlasting.
24:32. All these things are the book of life, and the covenant of the most High, and the knowledge of truth.
24:33. Moses commanded a law in the precepts of justices, and an inheritance to the house of Jacob, and the promises to Israel.
24:34. He appointed to David his servant to raise up of him a most mighty king, and sitting on the throne of glory forever.
A most mighty king. . .Viz., Christ, who by his gospel, like an overflowing river, has enriched the earth with heavenly wisdom.
24:35. Who filles up wisdom as the Phison, and as the Tigris in the days of the new fruits.
24:36. Who makes understanding to abound as the Euphrates, who multiplieth it as the Jordan in the time of harvest.
24:37. Who sends knowledge as the light, and rises up as Gehon in the time of the vintage.
24:38. Who first has perfect knowledge of her, and a weaker shall not search her out.
Who first has perfect knowledge of her. . .Christ was the first that had perfect knowledge of heavenly wisdom.
24:39. For her thoughts are more vast than the sea, and her counsels more deep than the great ocean.
24:41. I, like a brook out of a river of a mighty water; I, like a channel of a river, and like an aqueduct, came out of paradise.
24:42. I said: I will water my garden of plants, and I will water abundantly the fruits of my meadow.
24:43. And behold my brook became a great river, and my river came near to a sea:
24:44. For I make doctrine to shine forth to all as the morning light, and I will declare it afar off.
24:45. I will penetrate to all the lower parts of the earth, and will behold all that sleep, and will enlighten all that hope in the Lord.
24:46. I will yet pour out doctrine as prophecy, and will leave it to those who seek wisdom, and will not cease to instruct their offspring even to the holy age.
24:47. See that I have not labored myself only, but for all that seek out the truth.
Sirach Chapter 25
Documents of wisdom on several subjects.
25:1. With three things my spirit is pleased, which are approved before God and men:
25:2. The concord of brethren, and the love of neighbors, and man and wife that agree well together.
25:3. Three sorts my soul hates, and I am greatly grieved at their life:
25:4. A poor man that is proud: a rich man that is a liar: an old man that is a fool, and doting.
25:5. The things that you have not gathered in your youth, how shall you find them in your old age?
25:6. O how comely is judgment for a grey head, and for ancients to know counsel!
25:7. O how comely is wisdom for the aged, and understanding and counsel to men of honor!
25:8. Much experience is the crown of old men, and the fear of God is their glory.
25:9. Nine things that are not to be imagined by the heart have I magnified, and the tenth I will utter to men with my tongue.
25:10. A man that has joy of his children: and he that lives and sees the fall of his enemies.
25:11. Blessed is he that dwells with a wise woman, and that has not slipped with his tongue, and that has not served such as are unworthy of him.
25:12. Blessed is he that finds a true friend, and that declares justice to an ear that hears.
25:13. How great is he that finds wisdom and knowledge! but there is none above him that feareth the Lord.
25:14. The fear of God has set itself above all things:
25:15. Blessed is the man, to whom it is given to have the fear of God: he that holdeth it, to whom shall he be likened?
25:16. The fear of God is the beginning of his love: and the beginning of faith is to be fast joined unto it.
25:17. The sadness of the heart is every plague: and the wickedness of a woman is all evil.
25:18. And a man will choose any plague, but the plague of the heart:
25:19. And any wickedness, but the wickedness of a woman:
25:20. And any affliction, but the affliction from those who hate him:
25:21. And any revenge, but the revenge of enemies.
25:22. There is no head worse than the head of a serpent:
25:23. And there is no anger above the anger of a woman. It will be more agreeable to abide with a lion and a dragon, than to dwell with a wicked woman.
25:24. The wickedness of a woman changes her face: and she darkens her countenance as a bear: and shows it like sackcloth. In the midst of her neighbors,
25:25. Her husband groaned, and hearing he sighed a little.
25:26. All malice is short to the malice of a woman, let the lot of sinners fall upon her.
25:27. As the climbing of a sandy way is to the feet of the aged, so is a wife full of tongue to a quiet man.
25:28. Do not look upon a woman's beauty, and do not desire a woman for beauty.
25:29. A woman's anger, and impudence, and confusion is great.
25:30. A woman, if she have superiority, is contrary to her husband.
25:31. A wicked woman abates courage and makes a heavy countenance and a wounded heart.
25:32. Feeble hands, and disjointed knees, a woman that does not make her husband happy.
25:33. From the woman came the beginning of sin, and by her we all die.
25:34. Give no issue to your water, no, not a little: nor to a wicked woman liberty to gad abroad.
25:35. If she walk not at your hand, she will confound you in the sight of your enemies.
25:36. Cut her off from your flesh, lest she always abuse you.
Sirach Chapter 26
Of good and bad women.
26:1. Happy is the husband of a good wife: for the number of his years is double.
26:2. A virtuous woman makes her husband rejoice, and shall fulfill the years of his life in peace.
26:3. A good wife is a good portion, she shall be given in the portion of those who fear God, to a man for his good deeds.
26:4. Rich or poor, if his heart is good, his countenance shall be cheerful at all times.
26:5. Of three things my heart has been afraid, and at the fourth my face has trembled:
26:6. The accusation of a city, and the gathering together of the people:
26:7. And a false calumny, all are more grievous than death.
26:8. A jealous woman is the grief and mourning of the heart.
26:9. With a jealous woman is a scourge of the tongue which communicates with all.
26:10. As a yoke of oxen that is moved to and fro, so also is a wicked woman: he that has hold of her, is as he that takes hold of a scorpion.
26:11. A drunken woman is a great wrath: and her reproach and shame shall not be hid.
26:12. *** A woman shall be known by the haughtiness of her eyes and by her eyelids.
26:13. Set a strict watch on a daughter that does not turn herself away, lest finding an opportunity she abuse herself.
26:14. Take heed of the impudence of her eyes, and do not wonder if she slights you.
26:15. She will open her mouth as a thirsty traveller to the fountain, and will drink of every water near her, and will sit down by every hedge, and open her quiver against every arrow, until she fail.
26:16. The grace of a diligent woman shall delight her husband, and shall fat his bones.
26:17. Her discipline is the gift of God.
26:18. Such is a wise and silent woman, and there is nothing so much worth as a well instructed soul.
26:19. A holy and shamefaced woman is grace upon grace.
26:20. And no price is worthy of a continent soul.
26:21. As the sun when it rises to the world in the high places of God, so is the beauty of a good wife for the ornament of her house.
26:22. As the lamp shining upon the holy candlestick, so is the beauty of the face in a ripe age,
26:23. As golden pillars upon bases of silver, so are the firm feet upon the soles of a steady woman.
26:24. As everlasting foundations upon a solid rock, so the commandments of God in the heart of a holy woman.
26:25. At two things my heart is grieved, and the third brings anger upon me.
26:26. A man of war fainting through poverty, and a man of sense despised:
26:27. And he that passes over from justice to sin, God has prepared such an one for the sword.
26:28. Two sorts of callings have appeared to me hard and dangerous: a merchant is hardly free from negligence: and a huckster shall not be justified from the sins of the lips.
From negligence. . .That is, from the neglect of the service of God: because the eager pursuit of the mammon of this world, is apt to make men of that calling forget the great duties of loving God above all things, and their neighbors as themselves.--Ibid. A huckster. . .Or, a retailer of wine. Men of that profession are both greatly exposed to danger of sin themselves, and are too often accessary to the sins of others.
Sirach Chapter 27
Dangers of sin from several heads: the fear of God is the best preservative. He that digs a pit shall fall into it.
27:1. Through poverty many have sinned: and he that seeks to be enriched, turns away his eye.
27:2. As a stake sticks fast in the midst of the joining of stones, so also in the midst of selling and buying, sin shall stick fast.
27:3. Sin shall be destroyed with the sinner.
27:4. Unless you hold yourself diligently in the fear of the Lord, your house shall quickly be overthrown.
27:5. As when one sifts with a sieve, the dust will remain: so will the perplexity of a man in his thoughts.
27:6. The furnace tries the potter's vessels, and the trial of affliction just men.
27:7. As the dressing of a tree shows its fruit, so a word out of the thought of the heart of man.
27:8. Do not praise a man before he speaks, for this is the trial of men.
27:9. If you follow justice, you shall obtain her: and shall put her on as a long robe of honor, and you shall dwell with her: and she shall protect you forever, and in the day of acknowledgment you shall find a strong foundation.
27:10. Birds resort unto their like: so truth will return to those who practice her.
27:11. The lion always lies in wait for prey: so do sins for those who work iniquities.
27:12. A holy man continues in wisdom as the sun: but a fool is changed as the moon.
27:13. In the midst of the unwise keep in the word till its time: but be continually among men that think.
27:14. The discourse of sinners is hateful, and their laughter is at the pleasures of sin.
27:15. The speech that swears much shall make the hair of the head stand upright: and its irreverence shall make one stop his ears.
27:16. In the quarrels of the road is the shedding of blood: and their cursing is a grievous hearing.
27:17. He that discloses the secret of a friend loses his credit, and shall never find a friend to his mind.
27:18. Love your neighbor, and be joined to him with fidelity.
27:19. But if you reveal his secrets, follow no more after him.
27:20. For as a man that destroys his friend, so is he that destroys the friendship of his neighbor.
27:21. And as one that lets a bird go out of his hand, so have you let your neighbor go, and you shall not get him again.
27:22. Follow after him no more, for he is gone afar off, he is fled, as a roe escaped out of the snare because his soul is wounded.
27:23. You cannot bind him up anymore. And of a curse there is reconciliation:
And of a curse there is reconciliation. . .That is, it is easier to obtain a reconciliation after a curse, than after disclosing a secret.
27:24. But to disclose the secrets of a friend, leaves no hope to an unhappy soul.
27:25. He that winks with the eye forges wicked things, and no man will cast him off:
27:26. In the sight of your eyes he will sweeten his mouth, and will admire your words: but at the last he will writhe his mouth, and on your words he will lay a stumbling block.
27:27. I have hated many things but not like him, and the Lord will hate him.
27:28. If one cast a stone on high, it will fall upon his own head: and the deceitful stroke will wound the deceitful.
27:29. He that digs a pit, shall fall into it: and he that sets a stone for his neighbor, shall stumble upon it: and he that lays a snare for another, shall perish in it.
27:30. A mischievous counsel shall be rolled back upon the author, and he shall not know from whence it comes to him.
27:31. Mockery and reproach are of the proud, and vengeance as a lion shall lie in wait for him.
27:32. They shall perish in a snare that are delighted with the fall of the just: and sorrow shall consume them before they die.
27:33. Both anger and fury are abominable, and the sinful man shall be subject to them.
Sirach Chapter 28
Lessons against revenge and quarrels. The evils of the tongue.
28:1. He that seeks to revenge himself, shall find vengeance from the Lord, and he will surely keep his sins in remembrance.
28:2. Forgive your neighbor if he has hurt you: and then shall your sins be forgiven to you when you prayest.
28:3. Man to man reserves anger, and does he seek remedy of God?
28:4. He has no mercy on a man like himself, and does he entreat for his own sins?
28:5. He that is but flesh, nourishes anger, and does he ask forgiveness of God? who shall obtain pardon for his sins?
28:6. Remember your last things, and let enmity cease:
28:7. For corruption and death hang over in his commandments.
In his commandments. . .Supply the sentence out of the Greek thus: Remember corruption and death, and abide in the commandments.
28:8. Remember the fear of God, and be not angry with your neighbor.
28:9. Remember the covenant of the most High, and overlook the ignorance of your neighbor.
28:10. Refrain from strife, and you shall diminish your sins.
28:11. For a passionate man kindles strife, and a sinful man will trouble his friends, and bring in debate in the midst of those who are at peace.
28:12. For as the wood of the forest is, so the fire burns, and as a man's strength is, so shall his anger be, and according to his riches he shall increase his anger.
28:13. A hasty contention kindles a fire, a hasty quarrel sheds blood, and a tongue that bears witness brings death.
28:14. If you blow the spark, it shall burn as a fire: and if you spit upon it, it shall be quenched: both come out of the mouth.
28:15. The whisperer and the double tongue is accursed: for he has troubled many that were at peace.
28:16. The tongue of a third person has disquieted many, and scattered them from nation to nation.
28:17. It has destroyed the strong cities of the rich, and has overthrown the houses of great men.
28:18. It has cut in pieces the forces of people, and undone strong nations.
28:19. The tongue of a third person has cast out valiant women, and deprived them of their labors.
28:20. He that hearkens to it, shall never have rest, neither shall he have a friend in whom he may repose.
28:21. The stroke of a whip makes a bruise: but the stroke of the tongue will break the bones.
28:22. Many have fallen by the edge of the sword, but not so many as have perished by their own tongue.
28:23. Blessed is he that is defended from a wicked tongue, that has not passed into its wrath, and that has not drawn its yoke, and has not been bound in its bands.
28:24. For its yoke is a yoke of iron: and its bands are bands of brass.
28:25. Its death is a most evil death: and hell is preferable to it.
28:26. Its continuance shall not be for a long time, but it shall possess the ways of the unjust: and the just shall not be burnt with its flame.
28:27. They that forsake God shall fall into it, and it shall burn in them, and shall not be quenched, and it shall be sent upon them as a lion, and as a leopard it shall tear them.
28:28. Hedge in your ears with thorns, hear not a wicked tongue, and make doors and bars to your mouth.
28:29. Melt down your gold and silver, and make a balance for your words, and a just bridle for your mouth:
28:30. And take heed lest you slip with your tongue, and fall in the sight of your enemies who lie in wait for you, and your fall be incurable unto death.
Sirach Chapter 29
Of charity in lending money, and justice in repaying. Of alms, and of being surety.
29:1. He that shows mercy lends to his neighbor: and he that is stronger in hand keeps the commandments.
And he that is stronger in hand. . .That is, he that is hearty and bountiful in lending to his neighbor in his necessity.
29:2. Lend to your neighbor in the time of his need, and pay you your neighbor again in due time.
29:3. Keep your word, and deal faithfully with him: and you shall always find that which is necessary for you.
29:4. Many have looked upon a thing lent as a thing found, and have given trouble to those who helped them.
29:5. Till they receive, they kiss the hands of the lender, and in promises they humble their voice:
29:6. But when they should repay, they will ask time, and will return tedious and murmuring words, and will complain of the time:
29:7. And if he be able to pay, he will stand off, he will scarce pay one half, and will count it as if he had found it:
29:8. But if not, he will defraud him of his money, and he shall get him for an enemy without cause.
29:9. And he will pay him with reproaches and curses, and instead of honor and good turn will repay him injuries.
29:10. Many have refused to lend, not out of wickedness, but they were afraid to be defrauded without cause.
29:11. But yet towards the poor be you more hearty, and delay not to show him mercy.
29:12. Help the poor because of the commandment: and send him not away empty handed because of his poverty.
29:13. Lose your money for your brother and your friend: and hide it not under a stone to be lost.
29:14. Place your treasure in the commandments of the most High, and it shall bring you more profit than gold.
29:15. Shut up alms in the heart of the poor, and it shall obtain help for you against all evil.
29:16. Better than the shield of the mighty, and better than the spear:
29:17. It shall fight for you against your enemy.
29:18. A good man is surety for his neighbor: and he that has lost shame, will leave him to himself.
29:19. Forget not the kindness of your surety: for he has given his life for you.
29:20. The sinner and the unclean fleeth from his surety.
29:21. A sinner attributeth to himself the goods of his surety: and he that is of an unthankful mind will leave him that delivered him.
29:22. A man is surety for his neighbor: and when he has lost all shame, he shall forsake him.
29:23. Evil suretyship has undone many of good estate, and has tossed them as a wave of the sea.
29:24. It has made powerful men to go from place to place round about, and they have wandered in strange countries.
29:25. A sinner that transgresseth the commandment of the Lord, shall fall into an evil suretyship: and he that undertaketh many things, shall fall into judgment.
29:26. Recover your neighbor according to your power, and take heed to yourself that you fall not.
29:27. The chief thing for man's life is water and bread, and clothing, and a house to cover shame.
29:28. Better is the poor man's fare under a roof of boards, than sumptuous cheer abroad in another man's house.
29:29. Be contented with little instead of much, and you shall not hear the reproach of going abroad.
29:30. It is a miserable life to go as a guest from house to house: for where a man is a stranger, he shall not deal confidently, nor open his mouth.
29:31. He shall entertain and feed, and give drink to the unthankful, and moreover he shall hear bitter words.
29:32. Go, stranger, and furnish the table, and give others to eat what you have in your hand.
29:33. Give place to the honorable presence of my friends: for I want my house, my brother being to be lodged with me.
29:34. These things are grievous to a man of understanding: the upbraiding of houseroom, and the reproaching of the lender.
Sirach Chapter 30
Of correction of children. Health is better than wealth. Excessive grief is hurtful.
30:1. He that loveth his son, frequently chastiseth him, that he may rejoice in his latter end, and not grope after the doors of his neighbors.
30:2. He that instructeth his son shall be praised in him, and shall glory in him in the midst of them of his household.
30:3. He that teacheth his son, maketh his enemy jealous, and in the midst of his friends he shall glory in him.
30:4. His father is dead, and he is as if he were not dead: for he has left one behind him that is like himself.
30:5. While he lived he saw and rejoiced in him: and when he died he was not sorrowful, neither was he confounded before his enemies.
30:6. For he left behind him a defender of his house against his enemies, and one that will requite kindness to his friends.
30:7. For the souls of his sons he shall bind up his wounds, and at every cry his bowels shall be troubled.
30:8. A horse not broken becometh stubborn, and a child left to himself will become headstrong.
30:9. Give your son his way, and he shall make you afraid: play with him, and he shall make you sorrowful.
30:10. Laugh not with him, lest you have sorrow, and at the last your teeth be set on edge.
30:11. Give him not liberty in his youth, and wink not at his devices.
30:12. Bow down his neck while he is young, and chastise him while he is a child, lest he grow stubborn, and regard you not, and so be a sorrow of heart to you.
30:13. Instruct your son, and labor about him, lest his lewd behavior be an offense to you.
30:14. Better is a poor man who is sound, and strong of constitution, than a rich man who is weak and afflicted with evils.
30:15. Health of the soul in holiness of justice, is better than all gold and silver: and a sound body, than immense revenues.
30:16. There is no riches above the riches of the health of the body: and there is no pleasure above the joy of the heart.
30:17. Better is death than a bitter life, and everlasting rest, than continual sickness.
30:18. Good things that are hidden in a mouth that is shut, are as messes of meat set about a grave.
30:19. What good shall an offering do to an idol? for it can neither eat, nor smell:
30:20. So is he that is persecuted by the Lord, bearing the reward of his iniquity:
30:21. He sees with his eyes, and groans, as an eunuch embracing a virgin, and sighing.
30:22. Give not up your soul to sadness, and afflict not yourself in your own counsel.
30:23. The joyfulness of the heart, is the life of a man, and a never failing treasure of holiness: and the joy of a man is length of life.
30:24. Have pity on your own soul, pleasing God, and contain yourself: gather up your heart in his holiness: and drive away sadness far from you.
30:25. For sadness has killed many, and there is no profit in it.
30:26. Envy and anger shorten a man's days, and pensiveness will bring old age before the time.
30:27. A cheerful and good heart is always feasting: for his banquets are prepared with diligence.
Sirach Chapter 31
Of the desire of riches, and of moderation in eating and drinking.
31:1. Watching for riches consumes the flesh, and the thought of it drives away sleep.
31:2. The thinking beforehand turns away the understanding, and a grievous sickness makes the soul sober.
31:3. The rich man has labored in gathering riches together, and when he resteth he shall be filled with his goods.
31:4. The poor man has labored in his low way of life, and in the end he is still poor.
31:5. He that loves gold shall not be justified: and he that follows after corruption shall be filled with it.
31:6. Many have been brought to fall for gold, and its beauty has been their ruin.
31:7. Gold is a stumbling block to those who sacrifice to it: woe to those who eagerly follow after it, and every fool shall perish by it.
31:8. Blessed is the rich man that is found without blemish: and that has not gone after gold, nor put his trust in money nor in treasures.
31:9. Who is he, and we will praise him? for he has done wonderful things in his life.
31:10. Who has been tried thereby, and made perfect, he shall have glory everlasting. He that could have transgressed, and has not transgressed: and could do evil things, and has not done them:
31:11. Therefore are his goods established in the Lord, and all the assembly of the saints shall declare his alms.
31:12. Are you set at a great table? Do not be the first to open your mouth upon it.
31:13. Say not: There are many things which are upon it.
31:14. Remember that a wicked eye is evil.
31:15. What is created more wicked than an eye? therefore shall it weep over all the face when it shall see.
31:16. Stretch not out your hand first, lest being disgraced with envy you be put to confusion.
31:17. Be not hasty in a feast.
31:18. Judge of the disposition of your neighbor by yourself.
31:19. Use as a frugal man the things that are set before you: lest if you eatest much, you be hated.
31:20. Leave off first, for manners' sake: and exceed not, lest you offend.
31:21. And if you sittest among many, reach not your hand out first of all, and be not the first to ask for drink.
31:22. How sufficient is a little wine for a man well taught, and in sleeping you shall not be uneasy with it, and you shall feel no pain.
31:23. Watching, and choler, and gripes, are with an intemperate man:
31:24. Sound and wholesome sleep with a moderate man: he shall sleep till morning, and his soul shall be delighted with him.
31:25. And if you have been forced to eat much, arise, go out, and vomit: and it shall refresh you, and you shall not bring sickness upon your body.
31:26. Hear me, my son, and do not despise me: and in the end you shall find my words.
31:27. In all your works be quick, and no infirmity shall come to you.
31:28. The lips of many shall bless him that is liberal of his bread, and the testimony of his truth is faithful.
31:29. Against him that is niggardly of his bread, the city will murmur, and the testimony of his niggardliness is true.
31:30. Do not challenge those who love wine: for wine has destroyed very many.
31:31. Fire tries hard iron: so wine drunk to excess shall rebuke the hearts of the proud.
31:32. Wine taken with sobriety is equal life to men: if you drink it moderately, you shall be sober.
31:33. What is his life, who is diminished with wine?
31:34. What taketh away life? death.
31:35. Wine was created from the beginning to make men joyful, and not to make them drunk.
31:36. Wine drunken with moderation is the joy of the soul and the heart.
31:37. Sober drinking is health to soul and body.
31:38. Wine drunken with excess raiseth quarrels, and wrath, and many ruins.
31:39. Wine drunken with excess is bitterness of the soul.
31:40. The heat of drunkenness is the stumbling block of the fool, lessening strength and causing wounds.
31:41. Rebuke not your neighbor in a banquet of wine: and despise him not in his mirth.
31:42. Speak not to him words of reproach: and press him not in demanding again.
Sirach Chapter 32
Lessons for superiors and inferiors. Advantages of fearing God, and doing nothing without counsel.
32:1. Have they made you ruler? be not lifted up: be among them as one of them.
32:2. Have care of them, and so sit down, and when you have acquitted yourself of all your charge, take your place:
32:3. That you mayst rejoice for them, and receive a crown as an ornament of grace, and get the honor of the contribution.
32:4. Speak, you that are elder: for it becometh you,
32:5. To speak the first word with careful knowledge, and hinder not music.
32:6. Where there is no hearing, pour not out words, and be not lifted up out of season with your wisdom.
32:7. A concert of music in a banquet of wine is as a carbuncle set in gold.
32:8. As a signet of an emerald in a work of gold: so is the melody of music with pleasant and moderate wine.
32:9. Hear in silence, and for your reverence good grace shall come to you.
32:10. Young man, scarcely speak in your own cause.
32:11. If you be asked twice, let your answer be short.
32:12. In many things be as if you were ignorant, and hear in silence and withal seeking.
32:13. In the company of great men take not upon you: and when the ancients are present, speak not much.
32:14. Before a storm goes lightning: and before shamefacedness goes favor: and for your reverence good grace shall come to you.
32:15. And at the time of rising be not slack: but be first to run home to your house, and there withdraw yourself, and there take your pastime.
32:16. And do what you have a mind, but not in sin or proud speech.
32:17. And for all these things bless the Lord, that made you, and that replenisheth you with all his good things.
32:18. He that feareth the Lord, will receive his discipline: and they that will seek him early, shall find a blessing.
32:19. He that seeketh the law, shall be filled with it: and he that dealeth deceitfully, shall meet with a stumbling block therein.
32:20. They that fear the Lord, shall find just judgment, and shall kindle justice as a light.
32:21. A sinful man will flee reproof, and will find an excuse according to his will.
32:22. A man of counsel will not neglect understanding, a strange and proud man will not dread fear:
32:23. Even after he has done with fear without counsel, he shall be controlled by the things of his own seeking.
32:24. My son, do you nothing without counsel, and you shall not repent when you have done.
32:25. Go not in the way of ruin, and you shall not stumble against the stones: trust not yourself to a rugged way, lest you set a stumbling block to your soul.
32:26. And beware of your own children, and take heed of them of your household.
32:27. In every work of thine regard your soul in faith: for this is the keeping of the commandments.
In faith. . .That is, follow sincerely your soul in her faith and conscience.
32:28. He that believeth God, taketh heed to the commandments: and he that trusteth in him, shall fare never the worse.
Sirach Chapter 33
The fear of God is the best security. Times and men are in the hands of God. Take care of yourself as long as you livest, and look to your servants.
33:1. No evils shall happen to him that feareth the Lord, but in temptation God will keep him and deliver him from evils.
33:2. A wise man does not hate the commandments and justices, and he shall not be dashed in pieces as a ship in a storm.
33:3. A man of understanding is faithful to the law of God, and the law is faithful to him.
33:4. He that cleareth up a question, shall prepare what to say, and so having prayed he shall be heard, and shall keep discipline, and then he shall answer.
33:5. The heart of a fool is as a wheel of a cart: and his thoughts are like a rolling axletree.
33:6. A friend that is a mocker, is like a stallion horse: he neighs under every one that sits upon him.
33:7. Why does one day excel another, and one light another, and one year another year, when all come of the sun?
33:8. By the knowledge of the Lord they were distinguished, the sun being made, and keeping his commandment.
33:9. And he ordered the seasons, and holidays of them, and in them they celebrated festivals at an hour.
33:10. Some of them God made high and great days, and some of them he put in the number of ordinary days. And all men are from the ground, and out of the earth, from whence Adam was created.
33:11. With much knowledge the Lord has divided them and diversified their ways.
33:12. Some of them has he blessed, and exalted: and some of them has he sanctified, and set near himself: and some of them has he cursed and brought low, and turned them from their station.
33:13. As the potter's clay is in his hand, to fashion and order it:
33:14. All his ways are according to his ordering: so man is in the hand of him that made him, and he will render to him according to his judgment.
33:15. Good is set against evil, and life against death: so also is the sinner against a just man. And so look upon all the works of the most High. Two and two, and one against another.
33:16. And I awaked last of all, and as one that gathereth after the grapegatherers.
33:17. In the blessing of God I also have hoped: and as one that gathereth grapes, have I filled the winepress.
33:18. See that I have not labored for myself only, but for all that seek discipline.
33:19. Hear me, great men, and all you people, and hearken with your ears, rulers of the assembly.
33:20. Give not to son or wife, brother or friend, power over you while you livest; and give not your estate to another, lest you repent, and you entreat for the same.
33:21. As long as you livest, and have breath in you, let no man change you.
Change you. . .That is, so as to have this power over you.
33:22. For it is better that your children should ask of you, than that you look toward the hands of your children.
33:23. In all your works keep the pre-eminence.
The pre-eminence. . .That is, be master in your own house, and part not with your authority.
33:24. Let no stain sully your glory. In the time when you shall end the days of your life, and in the time of your decease, distribute your inheritance.
33:25. Fodder, and a wand, and a burden are for an ass: bread, and correction, and work for a slave.
33:26. He worketh under correction, and seeketh to rest: let his hands be idle, and he seeketh liberty.
33:27. The yoke and the thong bend a stiff neck, and continual labors bow a slave.
33:28. Torture and fetters are for a malicious slave: send him to work, that he be not idle:
33:29. For idleness has taught much evil.
33:30. Set him to work: for so it is fit for him. And if he be not obedient, bring him down with fetters, but be not excessive towards any one, and do no grievous thing without judgment.
33:31. If you have a faithful servant, let him be to you as your own soul: treat him as a brother: because in the blood of your soul you have gotten him.
33:32. If you hurt him unjustly, he will run away:
33:33. And if he rise up and depart, you do not know whom to ask, and in what way to seek him.
Sirach Chapter 34
The vanity of dreams. The advantage of experience, and of the fear of God.
34:1. The hopes of a man that is void of understanding are vain and deceitful: and dreams lift up fools.
34:2. The man that gives heed to lying visions, is like to him that catches at a shadow, and follows after the wind.
34:3. The vision of dreams is the resemblance of one thing to another: as when a man's likeness is before the face of a man.
34:4. What can be made clean by the unclean? and what truth can come from that which is false?
34:5. Deceitful divinations and lying omens and the dreams of evildoers, are vanity:
34:6. And the heart fancies as that of a woman in travail: except it be a vision sent forth from the most High, set not your heart upon them.
34:7. For dreams have deceived many, and they have failed that put their trust in them.
34:8. The word of the law shall be fulfilled without a lie, and wisdom shall be made plain in the mouth of the faithful.
34:9. What does he know, that has not been tried? A man that has much experience, shall think of many things: and he that has learned many things, shall show forth understanding.
34:10. He that has no experience, knoweth little: and he that has been experienced in many things, multiplieth prudence.
34:11. He that has not been tried, what manner of things does he know? he that has been surprised, shall abound with subtlety.
34:12. I have seen many things by travelling, and many customs of things.
34:13. Sometimes I have been in danger of death for these things, and I have been delivered by the grace of God.
34:14. The spirit of those that fear God, is sought after, and by his regard shall be blessed.
34:15. For their hope is on him that saves them, and the eyes of God are upon those who love him.
34:16. He that fears the Lord shall tremble at nothing, and shall not be afraid: for he is his hope.
34:17. The soul of him that fears the Lord is blessed.
34:18. To whom does he look, and who is his strength?
34:19. The eyes of the Lord are upon those who fear him, he is their powerful protector, and strong stay, a defense from the heat, and a cover from the sun at noon,
34:20. A preservation from stumbling, and a help from falling: he raises up the soul, and enlightens the eyes, and giveth health, and life, and blessing.
34:21. The offering of him that sacrificeth of a thing wrongfully gotten, is stained, and the mockeries of the unjust are not acceptable.
34:22. The Lord is only for those who wait upon him in the way of truth and justice.
34:23. The most High approveth not the gifts of the wicked: neither has he respect to the oblations of the unjust, nor will he be pacified for sins by the multitude of their sacrifices.
34:24. He that offereth sacrifice of the goods of the poor, is as one that sacrificeth the son in the presence of his father.
34:25. The bread of the needy, is the life of the poor: he that defrauds them of it is a man of blood.
34:26. He that taketh away the bread gotten by sweat, is like him that killeth his neighbor.
34:27. He that sheddeth blood, and he that defraudeth the laborer of his hire, are brothers.
34:28. When one buildeth up, and another pulleth down: what profit have they but the labor?
34:29. When one prayeth, and another curseth: whose voice will God hear?
34:30. He that washes himself after touching the dead, if he touches him again, what does his washing avail?
34:31. So a man that fasts for his sins, and does the same again, what does his humbling himself profit him? Who will hear his prayer?
Sirach Chapter 35
What sacrifices are pleasing to God.
35:1. He that keeps the law multiplies offerings.
35:2. It is a wholesome sacrifice to take heed to the commandments, and to depart from all iniquity.
35:3. And to depart from injustice, is to offer a propitiatory sacrifice for injustices, and a begging of pardon for sins.
35:4. He shall return thanks, that offers fine flour: and he that does mercy, offers sacrifice.
35:5. To depart from iniquity is that which pleases the Lord, and to depart from injustice, is an entreaty for sins.
35:6. You shall not appear empty in the sight of the Lord.
35:7. For all these things are to be done because of the commandment of God.
35:8. The oblation of the just maketh the altar fat, and is an odor of sweetness in the sight of the most High.
35:9. The sacrifice of the just is acceptable, and the Lord will not forget its memorial.
35:10. Give glory to God with a good heart: and diminish not the first fruits of your hands.
35:11. In every gift show a cheerful countenance, and sanctify your tithes with joy.
35:12. Give to the most High according to what he has given to you, and with a good eye do according to the ability of your hands:
35:13. For the Lord maketh recompense, and will give you seven times as much.
35:14. Do not offer wicked gifts, for such he will not receive.
35:15. And look not upon an unjust sacrifice, for the Lord is judge, and there is not with him respect of person.
35:16. The Lord will not accept any person against a poor man, and he will hear the prayer of him that is wronged.
35:17. He will not despise the prayers of the fatherless, nor the widow when she pours out her complaint.
35:18. Do not the widow's tears run down the cheek, and her cry against him that causes them to fall?
35:19. For from the cheek they go up even to heaven, and the Lord that hears will not be delighted with them.
35:20. He that adores God with joy shall be accepted, and his prayer shall approach even to the clouds.
35:21. The prayer of him that humbles himself, shall pierce the clouds: and till it come near he will not be comforted: and he will not depart till the most High behold.
35:22. And the Lord will not be slack, but will judge for the just, and will do judgment: and the Almighty will not have patience with them, that he may crush their back:
35:23. And he will repay vengeance to the Gentiles, till he have taken away the multitude of the proud, and broken the scepters of the unjust,
35:24. Till he have rendered to men according to their deeds: and according to the works of Adam, and according to his presumption,
35:25. Till he have judged the cause of his people, and he shall delight the just with his mercy.
35:26. The mercy of God is beautiful in the time of affliction, as a cloud of rain in the time of drought.
Sirach Chapter 36
A prayer for the assembly of God. Of a good heart, and a good wife.
36:1. Have mercy upon us, O God of all, and behold us, and show us the light of your mercies:
36:2. And send your fear upon the nations, that have not sought after you: that they may know that there is no God beside you, and that they may show forth your wonders.
36:3. Lift up your hand over the strange nations, that they may see your power.
36:4. For as you have been sanctified in us in their sight, so you shall be magnified among them in our presence,
36:5. That they may know you, as we also have known you, that there is no God beside you, O Lord.
36:6. Renew your signs, and work new miracles.
36:7. Glorify your hand, and your right arm.
36:8. Raise up indignation, and pour out wrath.
36:9. Take away the adversary, and crush the enemy.
36:10. Hasten the time, and remember the end, that they may declare your wonderful works.
36:11. Let him that escapes be consumed by the rage of the fire: and let them perish that oppress your people.
36:12. Crush the head of the princes of the enemies that say: There is no other beside us.
36:13. Gather together all the tribes of Jacob: that they may know that there no God besides you, and may declare your great works: and you shall inherit them as from the beginning.
36:14. Have mercy on your people, upon whom your name is invoked: and upon Israel, whom you have raised up to be your firstborn.
36:16. Fill Zion with your unspeakable words, and your people with your glory.
36:17. Give testimony to those who are your creatures from the beginning, and raise up the prophecies which the former prophets spoke in your name.
36:18. Reward those who patiently wait for you, that your prophets may be found faithful: and hear the prayers of your servants,
36:19. According to the blessing of Aaron over your people, and direct us into the way of justice, and let all know that dwell upon the earth, that you are God the beholder of all ages.
36:20. The belly will devour all meat, yet one is better than another.
36:21. The palate tastes venison and the wise heart false speeches.
36:22. A perverse heart will cause grief, and a man of experience will resist it.
A woman will receive every man. . .That is, any man that her parents propose to her to marry, though she does not like him, but marries in obedience to her parents, who make the choice for her.
36:24. The beauty of a woman cheers the countenance of her husband, and a man desires nothing more.
36:25. If she have a tongue that can cure, and likewise mitigate and show mercy: her husband is not like other men.
36:26. He that possesses a good wife, begins a possession: she is a help like to himself, and a pillar of rest.
36:27. Where there is no hedge, the possession shall be spoiled: and where there is no wife, he mourns that is in want.
36:28. Who will trust him that has no rest, and that lodges whereever the night takes him, as a robber well appointed, that skips from city to city.
Sirach Chapter 37
Of the choice of friends and counselors.
37:1. Every friend will say: I also am his friend: but there is a friend, that is only a friend in name. Is not this a grief even to death?
37:2. But a companion and a friend shall be turned to an enemy.
37:3. O wicked presumption, from where did you come to cover the earth with your malice and deceitfulness?
37:4. There is a companion who rejoices with his friend in his joys, but in the time of trouble, he will be against him.
37:5. There is a companion who condoles with his friend for his belly's sake, and he will take up a shield against the enemy.
37:6. Do not forget your friend in your mind, and do not be unmindful of him in your riches.
37:7. Do not consult with him that lays a snare for you, and hide your counsel from those who envy you.
37:8. Every counsellor gives out counsel, but there is one that is a counsellor for himself.
37:9. Beware of a counsellor. And know before what need he has: for he will devise to his own mind:
37:10. Lest he thrust a stake into the ground, and say to you:
37:11. Your way is good; and then stand on the other side to see what shall befall you.
37:12. Treat not with a man without religion concerning holiness, nor with an unjust man concerning justice, nor with a woman touching her of whom she is jealous, nor with a coward concerning war, nor with a merchant about traffic, nor with a buyer of selling, nor with an envious man of giving thanks,
37:13. Nor with the ungodly of piety, nor with the dishonest of honesty, nor with the field laborer of every work,
37:14. Nor with him that worketh by the year of the finishing of the year, nor with an idle servant of much business: give no heed to these in any matter of counsel.
37:15. But be continually with a holy man, whomsoever you shall know to observe the fear of God,
37:16. Whose soul is according to your own soul: and who, when you shall stumble in the dark, will be sorry for you.
37:17. And establish within yourself a heart of good counsel: for there is no other thing of more worth to you than it.
37:18. The soul of a holy man discovereth sometimes true things, more than seven watchmen that sit in a high place to watch.
37:19. But above all these things pray to the most High, that he may direct your way in truth.
37:20. In all your works let the true word go before you, and steady counsel before every action.
37:21. A wicked word shall change the heart: out of which four manner of things arise, good and evil, life and death: and the tongue is continually the ruler of them. There is a man that is subtle and a teacher of many, and yet is unprofitable to his own soul.
37:22. A skillful man has taught many, and is sweet to his own soul.
37:23. He that speaketh sophistically, is hateful: he shall be destitute of every thing.
37:24. Grace is not given him from the Lord: for he is deprived of all wisdom.
37:25. There is a wise man that is wise to his own soul: and the fruit of his understanding is commendable.
37:26. A wise man instructs his own people, and the fruits of his understanding are faithful.
37:27. A wise man shall be filled with blessings, and they that see shall praise him.
37:28. The life of a man is in the number of his days: but the days of Israel are innumerable.
37:29. A wise man shall inherit honor among his people, and his name shall live forever.
37:30. My son, prove your soul in your life: and if it be wicked, give it no power:
37:31. For all things are not expedient for all, and every kind pleaseth not every soul.
37:32. Be not greedy in any feasting, and pour not out yourself upon any meat:
37:33. For in many meats there will be sickness, and greediness will turn to choler.
37:34. By surfeiting many have perished, but he that is temperate, shall prolong life.
Sirach Chapter 38
Of physicians and medicines: what is to be done in sickness, and how we are to mourn for the dead. Of the employments of laborers and artificers.
38:1. Honor the physician for the need you have of him: for the most High has created him.
38:2. For all healing is from God, and he shall receive gifts of the king.
38:3. The skill of the physician shall lift up his head, and in the sight of great men he shall be praised.
38:4. The most High has created medicines out of the earth, and a wise man will not abhor them.
38:5. Was not bitter water made sweet with wood?
38:6. The virtue of these things is come to the knowledge of men, and the most High has given knowledge to men, that he may be honored in his wonders.
38:7. By these he shall cure and shall allay their pains, and of these the apothecary shall make sweet confections, and shall make up ointments of health, and of his works there shall be no end.
38:8. For the peace of God is over all the face of the earth.
38:9. My son, in your sickness neglect not yourself, but pray to the Lord, and he shall heal you.
38:10. Turn away from sin and order your hands aright, and cleanse your heart from all offense.
38:11. Give a sweet savor, and a memorial of fine flour, and make a fat offering, and then give place to the physician.
38:12. For the Lord created him: and let him not depart from you, for his works are necessary.
38:13. For there is a time when you must fall into their hands:
38:14. And they shall beseech the Lord, that he would prosper what they give for ease and remedy, for their conversation.
38:15. He that sins in the sight of his Maker, shall fall into the hands of the physician.
38:16. My son, shed tears over the dead, and begin to lament as if you hadst suffered some great harm, and according to judgment cover his body, and neglect not his burial.
38:17. And for fear of being ill spoken of weep bitterly for a day, and then comfort yourself in your sadness.
38:18. And make mourning for him according to his merit for a day, or two, for fear of detraction.
38:19. For of sadness comes death, and it overwhelms the strength, and the sorrow of the heart bows down the neck.
38:20. In withdrawing aside sorrow remains: and the substance of the poor is according to his heart.
38:21. Do not give up your heart to sadness, but drive it from you: and remember the latter end.
38:22. Do not forget it: for there is no returning, and you shall do him no good, and shall hurt yourself.
38:23. Remember my judgment: for yours also shall be so: yesterday for me, and today for you.
38:24. When the dead is at rest, let his remembrance rest, and comfort him in the departing of his spirit.
38:25. The wisdom of a scribe comes by his time of leisure: and he that is less in action, shall receive wisdom.
A scribe. . .That is, a doctor of the law, or, a learned man.
38:26. With what wisdom shall he be furnished that holds the plough, and that glories in the goad, that drives the oxen therewith, and is occupied in their labors, and his whole talk is about the offspring of bulls?
38:27. He shall give his mind to turn up furrows, and his care is to give the kine fodder.
38:28. So every craftsman and workmaster that labors night and day, he who makes graven seals, and by his continual diligence varies the figure: he shall give his mind to the resemblance of the picture, and by his watching shall finish the work.
38:29. So does the smith sitting by the anvil and considering the iron work. The vapor of the fire wastes his flesh, and he fights with the heat of the furnace.
38:30. The noise of the hammer is always in his ears, and his eye is upon the pattern of the vessel he maketh.
38:31. He setteth his mind to finish his work, and his watching to polish them to perfection.
38:32. So does the potter sitting at his work, turning the wheel about with his feet, who is always carefully set to his work, and maketh all his work by number:
38:33. He fashioneth the clay with his arm, and boweth down his strength before his feet:
38:34. He shall give his mind to finish the glazing, and his watching to make clean the furnace.
38:35. All these trust to their hands, and every one is wise in his own art.
38:36. Without these a city is not built.
38:37. And they shall not dwell, nor walk about therein, and they shall not go up into the assembly.
38:38. Upon the judges' seat they shall not sit, and the ordinance of judgment they shall not understand, neither shall they declare discipline and judgment, and they shall not be found where parables are spoken:
38:39. But they shall strengthen the state of the world, and their prayer shall be in the work of their craft, applying their soul, and searching in the law of the most High.
Sirach Chapter 39
The exercises of the wise man. The Lord is to be glorified for his works.
39:1. The wise man will seek out the wisdom of all the ancients, and will be occupied in the prophets.
39:2. He will keep the sayings of renowned men, and will enter withal into the subtilties of parables.
39:3. He will search out the hidden meanings of proverbs, and will be conversant in the secrets of parables.
39:4. He shall serve among great men, and appear before the governor.
39:5. He shall pass into strange countries: for he shall try good and evil among men.
39:6. He will give his heart to resort early to the Lord that made him, and he will pray in the sight of the most High.
39:7. He will open his mouth in prayer, and will make supplication for his sins.
39:8. For if it shall please the great Lord, he will fill him with the spirit of understanding:
39:9. And he will pour forth the words of his wisdom as showers, and in his prayer he will confess to the Lord.
39:10. And he shall direct his counsel, and his knowledge, and in his secrets shall he meditate.
39:11. He shall show forth the discipline he has learned, and shall glory in the law of the covenant of the Lord.
39:12. Many shall praise his wisdom, and it shall never be forgotten.
39:13. The memory of him shall not depart away, and his name shall be in request from generation to generation.
39:14. Nations shall declare his wisdom, and the assembly shall show forth his praise.
39:15. If he continue, he shall leave a name above a thousand: and if he rest, it shall be to his advantage.
39:16. I will yet meditate that I may declare: for I am filled as with a holy transport.
39:17. By a voice he says: Hear me, divine offspring, and bud forth as the rose planted by the brooks of waters.
Ye divine offspring. . .He speaks to the children of Israel, the people of God: whom he exhorts to bud forth and flourish with virtue.
39:18. Give a sweet odor as frankincense.
39:19. Send forth flowers, as the lily, and yield a smell, and bring forth leaves in grace, and praise with canticles, and bless the Lord in his works.
39:20. Magnify his name, and give glory to him with the voice of your lips, and with the canticles of your mouths, and with harps, and in praising him, you shall say in this manner:
39:21. All the works of the Lord are exceeding good.
39:22. At his word the waters stood as a heap: and at the words of his mouth the receptacles of waters:
39:23. For at his commandment favor is shown, and there is no diminishing of his salvation.
39:24. The works of all flesh are before him, and there is nothing hid from his eyes.
39:25. He seeth from eternity to eternity, and there is nothing wonderful before him.
39:26. There is no saying: What is this, or what is that? for all things shall be sought in their time.
39:27. His blessing has overflowed like a river.
39:28. And as a flood has watered the earth; so shall his wrath inherit the nations, that have not sought after him.
39:29. Even as he turned the waters into a dry land, and the earth was made dry: and his ways were made plain for their journey: so to sinners they are stumblingblocks in his wrath.
39:30. Good things were created for the good from the beginning, so for the wicked, good and evil things.
39:31. The principal things necessary for the life of men, are water, fire, and iron, salt, milk, and bread of flour, and honey, and the cluster of the grape, and oil, and clothing.
39:32. All these things shall be for good to the holy, so to the sinners and the ungodly they shall be turned into evil.
39:33. There are spirits that are created for vengeance, and in their fury they lay on grievous torments.
39:34. In the time of destruction they shall pour out their force: and they shall appease the wrath of him that made them.
39:35. Fire, hail, famine, and death, all these were created for vengeance.
39:36. The teeth of beasts, and scorpions, and serpents, and the sword taking vengeance upon the ungodly unto destruction.
39:37. In his commandments they shall feast, and they shall be ready upon earth when need is, and when their time is come they shall not transgress his word.
39:38. Therefore from the beginning I was resolved, and I have meditated, and thought on these things and left them in writing,
39:39. All the works of the Lord are good, and he will furnish every work in due time.
39:40. It is not to be said: This is worse than that: for all shall be well approved in their time.
39:41. Now therefore with the whole heart and mouth praise him, and bless the name of the Lord.
Sirach Chapter 40
The miseries of the life of man are relieved by the grace of God and his fear.
40:1. Great labor is created for all men, and a heavy yoke is upon the children of Adam from the day of their coming out of their mother's womb, until the day of their burial into the mother of all.
40:2. Their thoughts, and fears of the heart, their imagination of things to come, and the day of their end:
40:3. From him that sitteth on a glorious throne, unto him that is humbled in earth and ashes:
40:4. From him that weareth purple, and beareth the crown, even to him that is covered with rough linen: wrath, envy, trouble, unquietness, and the fear of death, continual anger, and strife,
40:5. And in the time of rest upon his bed, the sleep of the night changeth his knowledge.
40:6. A little and as nothing is his rest, and afterward in sleep, as in the day of keeping watch.
40:7. He is troubled in the vision of his heart, as if he had escaped in the day of battle. In the time of his safety he rose up, and wondereth that there is no fear.
40:8. Such things happen to all flesh, from man even to beast, and upon sinners are sevenfold more.
40:9. Moreover, death, and bloodshed, strife, and sword, oppressions, famine, and affliction, and scourges:
40:10. All these things are created for the wicked, and for their sakes came the flood.
40:11. All things that are of the earth, shall return to the earth again, and all waters shall return to the sea.
40:12. All bribery, and injustice shall be blotted out, and fidelity shall stand forever.
40:13. The riches of the unjust shall be dried up like a river, and shall pass away with a noise like a great thunder in rain.
40:14. While he openeth his hands he shall rejoice: but transgressors shall pine away in the end.
40:15. The offspring of the ungodly shall not bring forth many branches, and make a noise as unclean roots upon the top of a rock.
40:16. The weed growing over every water, and at the bank of the river, shall be pulled up before all grass.
40:17. Grace is like a paradise in blessings, and mercy remains forever.
40:18. The life of a laborer that is content with what he has, shall be sweet, and in it you shall find a treasure.
40:19. Children, and the building of a city shall establish a name, but a blameless wife shall be counted above them both.
40:20. Wine and music rejoice the heart, but the love of wisdom is above them both.
40:21. The flute and the psaltery make a sweet melody, but a pleasant tongue is above them both.
40:22. Your eye desires favor and beauty, but more than these green sown fields.
40:23. A friend and companion meeting together in season, but above them both is a wife with her husband.
40:24. Brethren are a help in the time of trouble, but mercy shall deliver more than they.
40:25. Gold and silver make the feet stand sure: but wise counsel is above them both.
40:26. Riches and strength lift up the heart: but above these is the fear of the Lord.
40:27. There is no want in the fear of the Lord, and it needeth not to seek for help.
40:28. The fear of the Lord is like a paradise of blessing, and they have covered it above all glory.
40:29. My son, in your lifetime be not indigent: for it is better to die than to want.
40:30. The life of him that looks toward another man's table is not to be counted a life: for he feeds his soul with another man's meat.
40:31. But a man, well instructed and taught, will look to himself.
40:32. Begging will be sweet in the mouth of the unwise, but in his belly there shall burn a fire.
Sirach Chapter 41
Of the remembrance of death: of an evil and of a good name: of what things we ought to be ashamed.
41:1. O death, how bitter is the remembrance of you to a man that has peace in his possessions!
41:2. To a man that is at rest, and whose ways are prosperous in all things, and that is yet able to take meat!
41:3. O death your sentence is welcome to the man that is in need, and to him whose strength faileth:
41:4. Who is in a decrepit age, and that is in care about all things, and to the distrustful that loseth patience!
41:5. Fear not the sentence of death. Remember what things have been before you, and what shall come after you: this sentence is from the Lord upon all flesh.
41:6. And what shall come upon you by the good pleasure of the most High? whether ten, or a hundred, or a thousand years.
41:7. For among the dead there is no accusing of life.
41:8. The children of sinners become children of abominations, and they that converse near the houses of the ungodly.
41:9. The inheritance of the children of sinners shall perish, and with their posterity shall be a perpetual reproach.
41:10. The children will complain of an ungodly father, because for his sake they are in reproach.
41:11. Woe to you, ungodly men, who have forsaken the law of the most high Lord.
41:12. And if you be born, you shall be born in malediction: and if you die, in malediction shall be your portion.
41:13. All things that are of the earth, shall return into the earth: so the ungodly shall from malediction to destruction.
41:14. The mourning of men is about their body, but the name of the ungodly shall be blotted out.
41:15. Take care of a good name: for this shall continue with you, more than a thousand treasures precious and great.
41:16. A good life has its number of days: but a good name shall continue forever.
41:17. My children, keep discipline in peace: for wisdom that is hid, and a treasure that is not seen, what profit is there in them both?
41:18. Better is the man that hides his folly, than the man that hides his wisdom.
41:19. Wherefore have a shame of these things I am now going to speak of.
Have a shame, etc. . .That is to say, be ashamed of doing any of these things, which I am now going to mention; for though sometimes shamefacedness is not to be indulged: yet it is often good and necessary: as in the following cases.
41:20. For it is not good to keep all shamefacedness: and all things do not please all men in opinion.
41:21. Be ashamed
*** of a lie before a governor and a man in power:
41:22. Of an offense before a prince, and a judge: of iniquity before a congregation and a people:
41:23. Of injustice before a companion and friend: and in regard to the place where you dwellest,
41:24. Of theft, and of the truth of God, and the covenant: of leaning with your elbow over meat, and of deceit in giving and taking:
41:25. Of silence before those who salute you: of looking upon a harlot: and of turning away your face from your kinsman.
41:26. Turn not away your face from your neighbor, and of taking away a portion and not restoring.
41:27. Do not gaze upon another man's wife, do not be inquisitive after his handmaid, and do not approach her bed.
41:28. Be ashamed of upbraiding speeches before friends: and after you have given, upbraid not.
Sirach Chapter 42
Of what things we ought not to be ashamed. Cautions with regard to women. The works and greatness of God.
42:1. Repeat not the word which you have heard, and disclose not the thing that is secret; so shall you be truly without confusion, and shall find favor before all men: be not ashamed of any of these things, and accept no person to sin thereby:
42:2. Of the law of the most High, and of his covenant, and of judgment to justify the ungodly:
42:3. Of the affair of companions and travellers, and of the gift of the inheritance of friends:
42:4. Of exactness of balance and weights, of getting much or little:
42:5. Of the corruption of buying, and of merchants, and of much correction of children, and to make the side of a wicked slave to bleed.
42:6. Sure keeping is good over a wicked wife.
42:7. Where there are many hands, shut up, and deliver all things in number, and weight: and put all in writing that you give out or receive in.
42:8. Do not be ashamed to inform the unwise and foolish, and the aged, that are judged by young men: and you shall be well instructed in all things, and well approved in the sight of all men living.
42:9. The father wakes for the daughter when no man knows, and the care for her takes away his sleep, when she is young, lest she pass away the flower of her age, and when she is married, lest she should be hateful:
42:10. In her virginity, lest she should be corrupted, and be found with child in her father's house: and having a husband, lest she should misbehave herself, or at the least become barren.
42:11. Keep a sure watch over a shameless daughter: lest at anytime she make you become a laughingstock to your enemies, and a byword in the city, and a reproach among the people, and she make you ashamed before all the multitude.
42:12. Behold not everybody's beauty: and tarry not among women.
42:13. For from garments comes a moth, and from a woman the iniquity of a man.
42:14. For better is the iniquity of a man, than a woman doing a good turn, and a woman bringing shame and reproach.
Better is the iniquity, etc. . .That is, there is, commonly speaking, less danger to be apprehended to the soul from the churlishness, or injuries we receive from men, than from the flattering favors and familiarity of women.
42:15. I will now remember the works of the Lord, and I will declare the things I have seen. By the words of the Lord are his works.
42:16. The sun giving light has looked upon all things, and full of the glory of the Lord is his work.
42:17. Has not the Lord made the saints to declare all his wonderful works, which the Lord Almighty has firmly settled to be established for his glory?
42:18. He has searched out the deep, and the heart of men: and considered their crafty devices.
42:19. For the Lord knows all knowledge, and has beheld the signs of the world, he declares the things that are past, and the things that are to come, and reveals the traces of hidden things.
42:20. No thought escapes him, and no word can hide itself from him.
42:21. He has beautified the glorious works of his wisdom: and he is from eternity to eternity, and to him nothing may be added,
42:22. Nor can he be diminished, and he has no need of any counsellor.
42:23. O how desirable are all his works, and what we can know is but as a spark!
42:24. All these things live, and remain forever, and for every use all things obey him.
42:25. All things are double, one against another, and he has made nothing defective.
42:26. He has established the good things of every one. And who shall be filled with beholding his glory?
Sirach Chapter 43
The works of God are exceedingly glorious and wonderful: no man is able sufficiently to praise him.
43:1. The firmament on high is his beauty, the beauty of heaven with its glorious show.
43:2. The sun when it appears showing forth at its rising an admirable instrument, the work of the most High.
43:3. At noon it burns the earth, and who can abide its burning heat? As one keeping a furnace in the works of heat:
43:4. The sun three times as much, burns the mountains, breathing out fiery vapors, and shining with his beams, he blinds the eyes.
43:5. Great is the Lord that made him, and at his words he has hastened his course.
43:6. And the moon in all in her season, is for a declaration of times and a sign of the world.
43:7. From the moon is the sign of the festival day, a light that decreases in her perfection.
43:8. The month is called after her name, increasing wonderfully in her perfection.
43:9. Being an instrument of the armies on high, shining gloriously in the firmament of heaven.
43:10. The glory of the stars is the beauty of heaven; the Lord enlighteneth the world on high.
43:11. By the words of the holy one they stand in judgment, and shall never fall in their watches.
43:12. Look upon the rainbow, and bless him that made it: it is very beautiful in its brightness.
43:13. It encompasses heaven about with the circle of its glory, the hands of the most High have displayed it.
43:14. By his commandment he makes the snow to fall apace, and sends forth swiftly the lightnings of his judgment.
43:15. Through this are the treasures opened, and the clouds fly out like birds.
43:16. By his greatness he has fixed the clouds, and the hailstones are broken.
43:17. At his sight shall the mountains be shaken, and at his will the south wind shall blow.
43:18. The noise of his thunder shall strike the earth, so does the northern storm, and the whirlwind:
43:19. And as the birds lighting upon the earth, he scatters snow, and its falling is as the coming down of locusts.
43:20. The eye admires at the beauty of its whiteness, and the heart is astonished at its shower.
43:21. He shall pour frost as salt upon the earth: and when it freezes, it shall become like the tops of thistles.
43:22. The cold north wind blows, and the water is congealed into crystal; upon every gathering together of waters it shall rest, and shall clothe the waters as a breastplate.
43:23. And it shall devour the mountains, and burn the wilderness, and consume all that is green as with fire.
43:24. A present remedy of all is the speedy coming of a cloud, and a dew that meets it, by the heat that comes, shall overpower it.
43:25. At his word the wind is still, and with his thought he appeases the deep, and the Lord has planted islands therein.
43:26. Let those who sail on the sea tell its dangers: and when we hear with our ears, we shall admire.
43:27. There are great and wonderful works: a variety of beasts, and of all living things, and the monstrous creatures of whales.
43:28. Through him is established the end of their journey, and by his word all things are regulated.
43:29. We shall say much, and yet shall want words: but the sum of our words is, He is all.
43:30. What shall we be able to do to glorify him? For the Almighty himself is above all his works.
43:31. The Lord is terrible, and exceeding great, and his power is admirable.
43:32. Glorify the Lord as much as ever you can, for he will yet far exceed, and his magnificence is wonderful.
43:33. Blessing the Lord, exalt him as much as you can; for he is above all praise.
43:34. When you exalt him put forth all your strength, and be not weary: for you can never go far enough.
43:35. Who shall see him, and declare him? and who shall magnify him as he is from the beginning?
43:36. There are many things hidden from us that are greater than these: for we have seen but a few of his works.
43:37. But the Lord has made all things, and to the godly he has given wisdom.
Sirach Chapter 44
The praises of the holy fathers, in particular of Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
44:1. Let us now praise men of renown and our fathers in their generation.
44:2. The Lord has wrought great glory through his magnificence from the beginning.
44:3. Such as have borne rule in their dominions, men of great power, and endued with their wisdom, showing forth in the prophets the dignity of prophets,
44:4. And ruling over the present people, and by the strength of wisdom instructing the people in most holy words.
44:5. Such as by their skill sought out musical tunes, and published canticles of the scriptures.
44:6. Rich men in virtue, studying beautifulness: living at peace in their houses.
44:7. All these have gained glory in their generations, and were praised in their days.
44:8. They that were born of them have left a name behind them, that their praises might be related:
44:9. And there are some, of whom there is no memorial: who are perished, as if they had never been: and are become as if they had never been born, and their children with them.
44:10. But these were men of mercy, whose godly deeds have not failed:
44:11. Good things continue with their seed,
44:12. Their posterity are a holy inheritance, and their seed has stood in the covenants.
44:13. And their children for their sakes remain forever: their seed and their glory shall not be forsaken.
44:14. Their bodies are buried in peace, and their name lives unto generation and generation.
44:15. Let the people show forth their wisdom, and the assembly declare their praise.
44:16. Enoch pleased God, and was translated into paradise, that he may give repentance to the nations.
44:17. Noah was found perfect, just, and in the time of wrath he was made a reconciliation.
44:18. Therefore was there a remnant left to the earth, when the flood came.
44:19. The covenants of the world were made with him, that all flesh should no more be destroyed with the flood.
44:20. Abraham was the great father of a multitude of nations, and there was not found the like to him in glory, who kept the law of the most High, and was in covenant with him.
44:21. In his flesh he established the covenant, and in temptation he was found faithful.
44:22. Therefore by an oath he gave him glory in his posterity, that he should increase as the dust of the earth,
44:23. And that he would exalt his seed as the stars, and they should inherit from sea to sea, and from the river to the ends of the earth.
44:24. And he did in like manner with Isaac for the sake of Abraham his father.
44:25. The Lord gave him the blessing of all nations, and confirmed his covenant upon the head of Jacob.
44:26. He acknowledged him in his blessings, and gave him an inheritance, and divided him his portion in twelve tribes.
44:27. And he preserved for him men of mercy, that found grace in the eyes of all flesh.
Sirach Chapter 45
The praises of Moses, of Aaron, and of Phinees.
45:1. Moses was beloved of God, and men: whose memory is in benediction.
45:2. He made him like the saints in glory, and magnified him in the fear of his enemies, and with his words he made prodigies to cease.
45:3. He glorified him in the sight of kings, and gave him commandments in the sight of his people, and showed him his glory.
45:4. He sanctified him in his faith, and meekness, and chose him out of all flesh.
45:5. For he heard him, and his voice, and brought him into a cloud.
45:6. And he gave him commandments before his face, and a law of life and instruction, that he might teach Jacob his covenant, and Israel his judgments.
45:7. He exalted Aaron his brother, and like to himself of the tribe of Levi:
45:8. He made an everlasting covenant with him, and gave him the priesthood of the nation, and made him blessed in glory,
45:9. And he girded him about with a glorious girdle, and clothed him with a robe of glory, and crowned him with majestic attire.
45:10. He put upon him a garment to the feet, and breeches, and an ephod, and he compassed him with many little bells of gold all round about,
45:11. That as he went there might be a sound, and a noise made that might be heard in the temple, for a memorial to the children of his people.
45:12. He gave him a holy robe of gold, and blue, and purple, a woven work of a wise man, endued with judgment and truth:
45:13. Of twisted scarlet the work of an artist, with precious stones cut and set in gold, and graven by the work of a lapidary for a memorial, according to the number of the tribes of Israel.
45:14. And a crown of gold upon his mitre wherein was engraved Holiness, an ornament of honor: a work of power, and delightful to the eyes for its beauty.
45:15. Before him there were none so beautiful, even from the beginning.
45:16. No stranger was ever clothed with them, but only his children alone, and his grandchildren forever.
45:17. His sacrifices were consumed with fire every day.
45:18. Moses filled his hands and anointed him with holy oil.
45:19. This was made to him for an everlasting testament, and to his seed as the days of heaven, to execute the office of the priesthood, and to have praise, and to glorify his people in his name.
45:20. He chose him out of all men living, to offer sacrifice to God, incense, and a good savor, for a memorial to make reconciliation for his people:
45:21. And he gave him power in his commandments, in the covenants of his judgments, that he should teach Jacob his testimonies, and give light to Israel in his law.
45:22. And strangers stood up against him, and through envy the men that were with Dathan and Abiron, compassed him about in the wilderness, and the congregation of Core in their wrath.
45:23. The Lord God saw and it pleased him not, and they were consumed in his wrathful indignation.
45:24. He wrought wonders upon them, and consumed them with a flame of fire.
45:25. And he added glory to Aaron, and gave him an inheritance, and divided unto him the first fruits of the increase of the earth.
45:26. He prepared them bread in the first place unto fullness: for the sacrifices also of the Lord they shall eat, which he gave to him, and to his seed.
45:27. But he shall not inherit among the people in the land, and he has no portion among the people: for he himself is his portion and inheritance.
45:28. Phinees the son of Eleazar is the third in glory, by imitating him in the fear of the Lord:
45:29. And he stood up in the shameful fall of the people: in the goodness and readiness of his soul he appeased God for Israel.
45:30. Therefore he made to him a covenant of peace, to be the prince of the sanctuary, and of his people, that the dignity of priesthood should be to him and to his seed forever.
45:31. And a covenant to David the king, the son of Jesse of the tribe of Juda, an inheritance to him and to his seed, that he might give wisdom into our heart to judge his people in justice, that their good things might not be abolished, and he made their glory in their nation everlasting.
Sirach Chapter 46
The praise of Joshua, of Caleb, and of Samuel.
46:1. Valiant in war was Joshua the son of Nun, who was successor of Moses among the prophets, who was great according to his name,
46:2. Very great for the saving the elect of God, to overthrow the enemies that rose up against them, that he might get the inheritance for Israel.
46:3. How great glory did he gain when he lifted up his hands, and stretched out swords against the cities?
46:4. Who before him has so resisted? for the Lord himself brought the enemies.
46:5. Was not the sun stopped in his anger, and one day made as two?
46:6. He called upon the most high Sovereign when the enemies assaulted him on every side, and the great and holy God heard him by hailstones of exceeding great force.
46:7. He made a violent assault against the nation of his enemies, and in the descent he destroyed the adversaries.
And in the descent. . .Of Beth-horon (Jos. 10.).
46:8. That the nations might know his power, that it is not easy to fight against God. And he followed the mighty one:
46:9. And in the days of Moses he did a work of mercy, he and Caleb the son of Jephone, in standing against the enemy, and withholding the people from sins, and appeasing the wicked murmuring.
46:10. And they two being appointed, were delivered out of the danger from among the number of six hundred thousand men on foot, to bring them into their inheritance, into the land that floweth with milk and honey.
46:11. And the Lord gave strength also to Caleb, and his strength continued even to his old age, so that he went up to the high places of the land, and his seed obtained it for an inheritance:
46:12. That all the children of Israel might see, that it is good to obey the holy God.
46:13. Then all the judges, every one by name, whose heart was not corrupted: who turned not away from the Lord,
46:14. That their memory might be blessed, and their bones spring up out of their place,
46:15. And their name continue forever, the glory of the holy men remaining unto their children.
46:16. Samuel the prophet of the Lord, the beloved of the Lord his God, established a new government, and anointed princes over his people.
46:17. By the law of the Lord he judged the congregation, and the God of Jacob beheld, and by his fidelity he was proved a prophet.
46:18. And he was known to be faithful in his words, because he saw the God of light:
46:19. And called upon the name of the Lord Almighty, in fighting against the enemies who beset him on every side, when he offered a lamb without blemish.
46:20. And the Lord thundered from heaven, and with a great noise made his voice to be heard.
46:21. And he crushed the princes of the Tyrians, and all the lords of the Philistines:
46:22. And before the time of the end of his life in the world, he protested before the Lord, and his anointed: money, or any thing else, even to a shoe, he had not taken of any man, and no man did accuse him.
46:23. And after this he slept, and he made known to the king, and showed him the end of his life, and he lifted up his voice from the earth in prophecy to blot out the wickedness of the nation.
Sirach Chapter 47
The praise of Nathan, of David, and of Solomon: Of his fall and punishment.
47:1. Then Nathan the prophet arose in the days of David.
47:2. And as the fat taken away from the flesh, so was David chosen from among the children of Israel.
47:3. He played with lions as with lambs: and with bears he did in like manner as with the lambs of the flock, in his youth.
47:4. Did not he kill the giant, and take away reproach from his people?
47:5. In lifting up his hand, with the stone in the sling he beat down the boasting of Goliath:
47:6. For he called upon the Lord the Almighty, and he gave strength in his right hand, to take away the mighty warrior, and to set up the horn of his nation.
47:7. So in ten thousand did he glorify him, and praised him in the blessings of the Lord, in offering to him a crown of glory:
47:8. For he destroyed the enemies on every side, and extirpated the Philistines the adversaries unto this day: he broke their horn forever.
47:9. In all his works he gave thanks to the holy one, and to the most High, with words of glory.
47:10. With his whole heart he praised the Lord, and loved God that made him: and he gave him power against his enemies:
47:11. And he set singers before the altar, and by their voices he made sweet melody.
47:12. And to the festivals he added beauty, and set in order the solemn times even to the end of his life, that they should praise the holy name of the Lord, and magnify the holiness of God in the morning.
47:13. The Lord took away his sins, and exalted his horn forever: and he gave him a covenant of the kingdom, and a throne of glory in Israel.
47:14. After him arose up a wise son, and for his sake he cast down all the power of the enemies.
47:15. Solomon reigned in days of peace, and God brought all his enemies under him, that he might build a house in his name, and prepare a sanctuary forever: O how wise were you in your youth!
47:16. And you were filled as a river with wisdom, and your soul covered the earth.
47:17. And you multiplied riddles in parables: your name went abroad to the islands far off, and you were beloved in your peace.
47:18. The countries wondered at you for your canticles, and proverbs, and parables, and interpretations,
47:19. And at the name of the Lord God, whose surname is, God of Israel.
47:20. You gathered gold as copper, and multiplied silver as lead,
47:21. And you did bow yourself to women: and by your body you were brought under subjection.
47:22. You have stained your glory, and defiled your seed so as to bring wrath upon your children, and to have your folly kindled,
47:23. That you should make the kingdom to be divided, and out of Ephraim a rebellious kingdom to rule.
47:24. But God will not leave off his mercy, and he will not destroy, nor abolish his own works, neither will he cut up by the roots the offspring of his elect: and he will not utterly take away the seed of him that loveth the Lord.
47:25. Wherefore he gave a remnant to Jacob, and to David of the same stock.
47:26. And Solomon had an end with his fathers.
47:27. And he left behind him of his seed, the folly of the nation,
47:28. Even Roboam that had little wisdom, who turned away the people through his counsel:
47:29. And Jeroboam the son of Nabat, who caused Israel to sin, and showed Ephraim the way of sin, and their sins were multiplied exceedingly.
47:30. They removed them far away from their land.
47:31. And they sought out all iniquities, till vengeance came upon them, and put an end to all their sins.
Sirach Chapter 48
The praise of Elias, of Eliseus, of Ezechias, and of Isaias.
48:1. And Elijah the prophet stood up, as a fire, and his word burnt like a torch.
48:2. He brought a famine upon them, and they that provoked him in their envy, were reduced to a small number, for they could not endure the commandments of the Lord.
48:3. By the word of the Lord he shut up the heaven, and he brought down fire from heaven thrice.
48:4. Thus was Elias magnified in his wondrous works. And who can glory like to you?
48:5. Who raisedst up a dead man from below, from the lot of death, by the word of the Lord God.
48:6. Who broughtest down kings to destruction, and brokest easily their power in pieces, and the glorious from their bed.
48:7. Who heardest judgment in Sina, and in Horeb the judgments of vengeance.
48:8. Who anointedst kings to penance, and madest prophets successors after you.
48:9. Who was taken up in a whirlwind of fire, in a chariot of fiery horses.
48:10. Who are registered in the judgments of times to appease the wrath of the Lord, to reconcile the heart of the father to the son, and to restore the tribes of Jacob.
48:11. Blessed are they that saw you, and were honored with your friendship.
48:12. For we live only in our life, but after death our name shall not be such.
48:13. Elias was indeed covered with the whirlwind, and his spirit was filled up in Eliseus: in his days he feared not the prince, and no man was more powerful than he.
48:14. No word could overcome him, and after death his body prophesied.
48:15. In his life he did great wonders, and in death he wrought miracles.
48:16. For all this the people repented not, neither did they depart from their sins till they were cast out of their land, and were scattered through all the earth.
48:17. And there was left but a small people, and a prince in the house of David.
48:18. Some of these did that which pleased God: but others committed many sins.
48:19. Hezekiah fortified his city, and brought in water into its midst, and he dug a rock with iron, and made a well for water.
48:20. In his days Sennacherib came up, and sent Rabsaces, and lifted up his hand against them, and he stretched out his hand against Zion, and became proud through his power.
48:21. Then their hearts and hands trembled, and they were in pain as women in travail.
48:22. And they called upon the Lord who is merciful, and spreading their hands, they lifted them up to heaven: and the holy Lord God quickly heard their voice.
48:23. He was not mindful of their sins, neither did he deliver them up to their enemies, but he purified them by the hand of Isaias, the holy prophet.
48:24. He overthrew the army of the Assyrians, and the angel of the Lord destroyed them.
48:25. For Hezekiah did that which pleased God, and walked valiantly in the way of David his father, which Isaiah, the great prophet, and faithful in the sight of God, had commanded him.
48:26. In his days the sun went backward, and he lengthened the king's life.
48:27. With a great spirit he saw the things that are to come to pass at last, and comforted the mourners in Zion.
48:28. He showed what should come to pass forever, and secret things before they came.
Sirach Chapter 49
The praise of Josias, of Jeremias, Ezechiel, and the twelve prophets. Also of Zorobabel, Jesus the son of Josedech, Nehemias, Enoch, Joseph, Seth, Sem, and Adam.
49:1. The memory of Josiah is like the composition of a sweet smell made by the art of a perfumer:
49:2. His remembrance shall be sweet as honey in every mouth, and as music at a banquet of wine.
49:3. He was directed by God unto the repentance of the nation, and he took away the abominations of wickedness.
49:4. And he directed his heart towards the Lord, and in the days of sinners he strengthened godliness.
49:5. Except David, and Hezekiah and Josiah, all committed sin.
49:6. For the kings of Judah forsook the law of the most High, and despised the fear of God.
49:7. So they gave their kingdom to others, and their glory to a strange nation,
49:8. They burnt the chosen city of holiness, and made its streets desolate according to the prediction of Jeremiah.
49:9. For they treated him evil, who was consecrated a prophet from his mother's womb, to overthrow, and pluck up, and destroy, and to build again, and renew.
49:10. It was Ezekiel that saw the glorious vision, which was shown him upon the chariot of cherubims.
49:11. For he made mention of the enemies under the figure of rain, and of doing good to those who showed right ways.
49:12. And may the bones of the twelve prophets spring up out of their place: for they strengthened Jacob, and redeemed themselves by strong faith.
49:13. How shall we magnify Zerubabbel (also known as Zorobabel)? for he was as a signet on the right hand;
49:14. In like manner, Jesus, the son of Josedec, who in their days built the house, and set up a holy temple to the Lord, prepared for everlasting glory.
49:15. And let Nehemiah be a long time remembered, who raised up for us our walls that were cast down, and set up the gates and the bars, who rebuilt our houses.
49:17. Nor as Joseph, who was a man born prince of his brethren, the support of his family, the ruler of his brethren, the stay of the people:
49:18. And his bones were visited, and after death they prophesied.
They prophesied. . .That is, by their being carried out of Egypt they verified the prophetic prediction of Joseph. Gen. 50.
49:19. Seth and Sem obtained glory among men: and above every soul Adam in the beginning,
Sirach Chapter 50
The praises of Simon the high priest. The conclusion.
50:1. Simon the high priest, the son of Onias, who in his life propped up the house, and in his days fortified the temple.
50:2. By him also the height of the temple was founded, the double building and the high walls of the temple.
50:3. In his days the wells of water flowed out, and they were filled as the sea above measure.
50:4. He took care of his nation, and delivered it from destruction.
50:5. He prevailed to enlarge the city, and obtained glory in his conversation with the people: and enlarged the entrance of the house and the court.
50:6. He shone in his days as the morning star in the midst of a cloud, and as the moon at the full.
50:7. And as the sun when it shineth, so did he shine in the temple of God.
50:8. And as the rainbow giving light in bright clouds, and as the flower of roses in the days of the spring, and as the lilies that are on the brink of the water, and as the sweet smelling frankincense in the time of summer.
50:9. As a bright fire, and frankincense burning in the fire.
50:10. As a massy vessel of gold, adorned with every precious stone.
50:11. As an olive tree budding forth, and a cypress tree rearing itself on high, when he put on the robe of glory, and was clothed with the perfection of power.
Clothed with the perfection of power. . .That is, with all the vestments denoting his dignity and authority.
50:12. When he went up to the holy altar, he honored the vesture of holiness.
50:13. And when he took the portions out of the hands of the priests, he himself stood by the altar. And about him was the ring of his brethren: and as the cedar planted in mount Libanus,
50:14. And as branches of palm trees, they stood round about him, and all the sons of Aaron in their glory.
50:15. And the oblation of the Lord was in their hands, before all the congregation of Israel: and finishing his service, on the altar, to honor the offering of the most high King,
50:16. He stretched forth his hand to make a libation, and offered of the blood of the grape.
50:17. He poured out at the foot of the altar a divine odor to the most high Prince.
50:18. Then the sons of Aaron shouted, they sounded with beaten trumpets, and made a great noise to be heard for a remembrance before God.
50:19. Then all the people together made haste, and fell down to the earth upon their faces, to adore the Lord their God, and to pray to the Almighty God the most High.
50:20. And the singers lifted up their voices, and in the great house the sound of sweet melody was increased.
50:21. And the people in prayer besought the Lord the most High, until the worship of the Lord was perfected, and they had finished their office.
50:22. Then coming down, he lifted up his hands over all the congregation of the children of Israel, to give glory to God with his lips, and to glory in his name:
50:23. And he repeated his prayer, willing to show the power of God.
50:24. And now pray to the God of all, who has done great things in all the earth, who has increased our days from our mother's womb, and has done with us according to his mercy.
50:25. May he grant us joyfulness of heart, and that there be peace in our days in Israel forever:
50:26. That Israel may believe that the mercy of God is with us, to deliver us in his days.
50:27. There are two nations which my soul abhors: and the third is no nation: which I hate:
Abhorreth. . .Viz., with a holy indignation, as enemies of God and persecutors of his people. Such were then the Edomites who abode in mount Seir, the Philistines, and the Samaritans who dwelt in Sichem, and had their schismatical temple in that neighborhood.
50:28. They that sit on mount Seir, and the Philistines, and the foolish people that dwell in Sichem.
50:29. Yeshua the son of Sirach, of Jerusalem, has written in this book the doctrine of wisdom and instruction, who renewed wisdom from his heart.
50:30. Blessed is he that is conversant in these good things and he that layeth them up in his heart, shall be wise always.
50:31. For if he do them, he shall be strong to do all things: because the light of God guides his steps.
Sirach Chapter 51
A prayer of praise and thanksgiving.
51:1. A prayer of Jesus the son of Sirach. I will give glory to you, O Lord, O King, and I will praise you, O God my Savior.
51:2. I will give glory to your name: for you have been a helper and protector to me.
51:3. And have preserved my body from destruction, from the snare of an unjust tongue, and from the lips of those who forge lies, and in the sight of those who stood by, you have been my helper.
51:4. And you have delivered me, according to the multitude of the mercy of your name, from those who did roar, prepared to devour.
51:5. Out of the hands of those who sought my life, and from the gates of afflictions, which compassed me about:
51:6. From the oppression of the flame which surrounded me, and in the midst of the fire I was not burnt.
51:7. From the depth of the belly of hell, and from an unclean tongue, and from lying words, from an unjust king, and from a slanderous tongue:
51:8. My soul shall praise the Lord even to death.
51:9. And my life was drawing near to hell beneath.
51:10. They compassed me on every side, and there was no one that would help me. I looked for the succour of men, and there was none.
51:11. I remembered your mercy, O Lord, and your works, which are from the beginning of the world.
51:12. How you deliverest those who wait for you, O Lord, and savest them out of the hands of the nations.
51:13. Thou have exalted my dwelling place upon the earth and I have prayed for death to pass away.
51:14. I called upon the Lord, the father of my Lord, that he would not leave me in the day of my trouble, and in the time of the proud without help.
51:15. I will praise your name continually, and will praise it with thanksgiving, and my prayer was heard.
51:16. And you have saved me from destruction, and have delivered me from the evil time.
51:17. Therefore I will give thanks, and praise you, and bless the name of the Lord.
51:18. When I was yet young, before I wandered about, I sought for wisdom openly in my prayer.
51:19. I prayed for her before the temple, and unto the very end I will seek after her, and she flourished as a grape soon ripe.
51:20. My heart delighted in her, my foot walked in the right way, from my youth up I sought after her.
51:21. I bowed down my ear a little, and received her.
51:22. I found much wisdom in myself, and profited much therein.
51:23. To him that gives me wisdom, will I give glory.
51:24. For I have determined to follow her: I have had a zeal for good, and shall not be confounded.
51:25. My soul has wrestled for her, and in doing it I have been confirmed.
51:26. I stretched forth my hands on high, and I bewailed my ignorance of her.
51:27. I directed my soul to her, and in knowledge I found her.
51:28. I possessed my heart with her from the beginning: therefore I shall not be forsaken.
51:29. *** I shall possess a good possession.
51:30. The Lord has given me a tongue for my reward: and with it I will praise him.
51:31. Draw near to me, you unlearned, and gather yourselves together into the hours of discipline.
51:32. Why are you slow and what do you say of these things? your souls are exceeding thirsty.
51:33. I have opened my mouth, and have spoken: buy her for yourselves without silver,
51:34. And submit your neck to the yoke, and let your soul receive discipline: for she is near at hand to be found.
51:35. Behold with your eyes how I have labored a little, and have found much rest to myself.
51:36. Receive discipline as a great sum of money, and possess abundance of gold by her.
51:37. Let your soul rejoice in his mercy and you shall not be confounded in his praise.
51:38. Work your work before the time, and he will give you your reward in his time.