Jesus Sirach (RSV) 14
14 1 Blessed is the man who does not blunder with his lips and need not suffer grief for sin.
2 Blessed is he whose heart does not condemn him, and who has not given up his hope.
3 Riches are not seemly for a stingy man; and of what use is property to an envious man?
4 Whoever accumulates by depriving himself, accumulates for others; and others will live in luxury on his goods.
5 If a man is mean to himself, to whom will he be generous? He will not enjoy his own riches.
6 No one is meaner than the man who is grudging to himself, and this is the retribution for his baseness;
7 even if he does good, he does it unintentionally, and betrays his baseness in the end.
8 Evil is the man with a grudging eye; he averts his face and disregards people.
9 A greedy man's eye is not satisfied with a portion, and mean injustice withers the soul.
10 A stingy man's eye begrudges bread, and it is lacking at his table.
11 My son, treat yourself well, according to your means, and present worthy offerings to the Lord.
12 Remember that death will not delay, and the decree of Hades has not been shown to you.
13 Do good to a friend before you die, and reach out and give to him as much as you can.
14 Do not deprive yourself of a happy day; let not your share of desired good pass by you.
15 Will you not leave the fruit of your labors to another, and what you acquired by toil to be divided by lot?
16 Give, and take, and beguile yourself, because in Hades one cannot look for luxury.
17 All living beings become old like a garment, for the decree from of old is, "You must surely die!"
18 Like flourishing leaves on a spreading tree which sheds some and puts forth others, so are the generations of flesh and blood: one dies and another is born.
19 Every product decays and ceases to exist, and the man who made it will pass away with it.
20 Blessed is the man who meditates on wisdom and who reasons intelligently.
21 He who reflects in his mind on her ways will also ponder her secrets.
22 Pursue wisdom like a hunter, and lie in wait on her paths.
23 He who peers through her windows will also listen at her doors;
24 he who encamps near her house will also fasten his tent peg to her walls;
25 he will pitch his tent near her, and will lodge in an excellent lodging place;
26 he will place his children under her shelter, and will camp under her boughs;
27 he will be sheltered by her from the heat, and will dwell in the midst of her glory.
15 1 The man who fears the Lord will do this, and he who holds to the law will obtain wisdom.
2 She will come to meet him like a mother, and like the wife of his youth she will welcome him.
3 She will feed him with the bread of understanding, and give him the water of wisdom to drink.
4 He will lean on her and will not fall, and he will rely on her and will not be put to shame.
5 She will exalt him above his neighbors, and will open his mouth in the midst of the assembly.
6 He will find gladness and a crown of rejoicing, and will acquire an everlasting name.
7 Foolish men will not obtain her, and sinful men will not see her.
8 She is far from men of pride, and liars will never think of her.
9 A hymn of praise is not fitting on the lips of a sinner, for it has not been sent from the Lord.
10 For a hymn of praise should be uttered in wisdom, and the Lord will prosper it.
11 Do not say, "Because of the Lord I left the right way"; for he will not do what he hates.
12 Do not say, "It was he who led me astray"; for he had no need of a sinful man.
13 The Lord hates all abominations, and they are not loved by those who fear him.
14 It was he who created man in the beginning, and he left him in the power of his own inclination.
15 If you will, you can keep the commandments, and to act faithfully is a matter of your own choice.
16 He has placed before you fire and water: stretch out your hand for whichever you wish.
17 Before a man are life and death, and whichever he chooses will be given to him.
18 For great is the wisdom of the Lord; he is mighty in power and sees everything;
19 his eyes are on those who fear him, and he knows every deed of man.
20 He has not commanded any one to be ungodly, and he has not given any one permission to sin.
16 1 Do not desire a multitude of useless children, nor rejoice in ungodly sons.
2 If they multiply , do not rejoice in them, unless the fear of the Lord is in them.
3 Do not trust in their survival, and do not rely on their multitude; for one is better than a thousand, and to die childless is better than to have ungodly children.
4 For through one man of understanding a city will be filled with people, but through a tribe of lawless men it will be made desolate.
5 Many such things my eye has seen, and my ear has heard things more striking than these.
6 In an assembly of sinners a fire will be kindled, and in a disobedient nation wrath was kindled.
7 He was not propitiated for the ancient giants who revolted in their might.
8 He did not spare the neighbors of Lot, whom he loathed on account of their insolence.
9 He showed no pity for a nation devoted to destruction, for those destroyed in their sins;
10 nor for the six hundred thousand men on foot, who rebelliously assembled in their stubbornness.
11 Even if there is only one stiff-necked person, it will be a wonder if he remains unpunished. For mercy and wrath are with the Lord; he is mighty to forgive, and he pours out wrath.
12 As great as his mercy, so great is also his reproof; he judges a man according to his deeds.
13 The sinner will not escape with his plunder, and the patience of the godly will not be frustrated.
14 He will make room for every act of mercy; every one will receive in accordance with his deeds. 15 16
17 Do not say, "I shall be hidden from the Lord, and who from on high will remember me? Among so many people I shall not be known, for what is my soul in the boundless creation?
18 Behold, heaven and the highest heaven, the abyss and the earth, will tremble at his visitation.
19 The mountains also and the foundations of the earth shake with trembling when he looks upon them.
20 And no mind will reflect on this. Who will ponder his ways?
21 Like a tempest which no man can see, so most of his works are concealed.
22 Who will announce his acts of justice? Or who will await them? For the covenant is far off."
23 This is what one devoid of understanding thinks; a senseless and misguided man thinks foolishly.
24 Listen to me, my son, and acquire knowledge, and pay close attention to my words.
25 I will impart instruction by weight, and declare knowledge accurately.
26 The works of the Lord have existed from the beginning by his creation, and when he made them, he determined their divisions.
27 He arranged his works in an eternal order, and their dominion for all generations; they neither hunger nor grow weary, and they do not cease from their labors.
28 They do not crowd one another aside, and they will never disobey his word.
29 After this the Lord looked upon the earth, and filled it with his good things;
30 with all kinds of living beings he covered its surface, and to it they return.
17 1 The Lord created man out of earth, and turned him back to it again.
2 He gave to men few days, a limited time, but granted them authority over the things upon the earth.
3 He endowed them with strength like his own, and made them in his own image.
4 He placed the fear of them in all living beings, and granted them dominion over beasts and birds. 5
6 He made for them tongue and eyes; he gave them ears and a mind for thinking.
7 He filled them with knowledge and understanding, and showed them good and evil.
8 He set his eye upon their hearts to show them the majesty of his works. 9
10 And they will praise his holy name, to proclaim the grandeur of his works.
11 He bestowed knowledge upon them, and allotted to them the law of life.
12 He established with them an eternal covenant, and showed them his judgments.
13 Their eyes saw his glorious majesty, and their ears heard the glory of his voice.
14 And he said to them, "Beware of all unrighteousness." And he gave commandment to each of them concerning his neighbor.
15 Their ways are always before him, they will not be hid from his eyes. 16
17 He appointed a ruler for every nation, but Israel is the Lord's own portion. 18
19 All their works are as the sun before him, and his eyes are continually upon their ways.
20 Their iniquities are not hidden from him, and all their sins are before the Lord. 21
22 A man's almsgiving is like a signet with the Lord and he will keep a person's kindness like the apple of his eye.
23 Afterward he will arise and requite them, and he will bring their recompense on their heads.
24 Yet to those who repent he grants a return, and he encourages those whose endurance is failing.
25 Turn to the Lord and forsake your sins; pray in his presence and lessen your offenses.
26 Return to the Most High and turn away from iniquity, and hate abominations intensely.
27 Who will sing praises to the Most High in Hades, as do those who are alive and give thanks?
28 From the dead, as from one who does not exist, thanksgiving has ceased; he who is alive and well sings the Lord's praises.
29 How great is the mercy of the Lord, and his forgiveness for those who turn to him!
30 For all things cannot be in men, since a son of man is not immortal.
31 What is brighter than the sun? Yet its light fails. So flesh and blood devise evil.
32 He marshals the host of the height of heaven; but all men are dust and ashes.
18 1 He who lives for ever created the whole universe;
2 the Lord alone will be declared righteous. 3
4 To none has he given power to proclaim his works; and who can search out his mighty deeds?
5 Who can measure his majestic power? And who can fully recount his mercies?
6 It is not possible to diminish or increase them, nor is it possible to trace the wonders of the Lord.
7 When a man has finished, he is just beginning, and when he stops, he will be at a loss.
8 What is man, and of what use is he? What is his good and what is his evil?
9 The number of a man's days is great if he reaches a hundred years.
10 Like a drop of water from the sea and a grain of sand so are a few years in the day of eternity.
11 Therefore the Lord is patient with them and pours out his mercy upon them.
12 He sees and recognizes that their end will be evil; therefore he grants them forgiveness in abundance.
13 The compassion of man is for his neighbor, but the compassion of the Lord is for all living beings. He rebukes and trains and teaches them, and turns them back, as a shepherd his flock.
14 He has compassion on those who accept his discipline and who are eager for his judgments.
15 My son, do not mix reproach with your good deeds, nor cause grief by your words when you present a gift.
16 Does not the dew assuage the scorching heat? So a word is better than a gift.
17 Indeed, does not a word surpass a good gift? Both are to be found in a gracious man.
18 A fool is ungracious and abusive, and the gift of a grudging man makes the eyes dim.
19 Before you speak, learn, and before you fall ill, take care of your health.
20 Before judgment, examine yourself, and in the hour of visitation you will find forgiveness.
21 Before falling ill, humble yourself, and when you are on the point of sinning, turn back.
22 Let nothing hinder you from paying a vow promptly, and do not wait until death to be released from it.
23 Before making a vow, prepare yourself; and do not be like a man who tempts the Lord.
24 Think of his wrath on the day of death, and of the moment of vengeance when he turns away his face.
25 In the time of plenty think of the time of hunger; in the days of wealth think of poverty and need.
26 From morning to evening conditions change, and all things move swiftly before the Lord.
27 A wise man is cautious in everything, and in days of sin he guards against wrongdoing.
28 Every intelligent man knows wisdom, and he praises the one who finds her.
29 Those who understand sayings become skilled themselves, and pour forth apt proverbs.
30 Do not follow your base desires, but restrain your appetites.
31 If you allow your soul to take pleasure in base desire, it will make you the laughingstock of your enemies.
32 Do not revel in great luxury, lest you become impoverished by its expense.
33 Do not become a beggar by feasting with borrowed money, when you have nothing in your purse.
19 1 A workman who is a drunkard will not become rich; he who despises small things will fail little by little.
2 Wine and women lead intelligent men astray, and the man who consorts with harlots is very reckless.
3 Decay and worms will inherit him, and the reckless soul will be snatched away.
4 One who trusts others too quickly is lightminded, and one who sins does wrong to himself.
5 One who rejoices in wickedness will be condemned,
6 and for one who hates gossip evil is lessened.
7 Never repeat a conversation, and you will lose nothing at all.
8 With friend or foe do not report it, and unless it would be a sin for you, do not disclose it;
9 for some one has heard you and watched you, and when the time comes he will hate you.
10 Have you heard a word? Let it die with you. Be brave! It will not make you burst!
11 With such a word a fool will suffer pangs like a woman in labor with a child.
12 Like an arrow stuck in the flesh of the thigh, so is a word inside a fool.
13 Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything, so that he may do it no more.
14 Question a neighbor, perhaps he did not say it; but if he said it, so that he may not say it again.
15 Question a friend, for often it is slander; so do not believe everything you hear.
16 A person may make a slip without intending it. Who has never sinned with his tongue?
17 Question your neighbor before you threaten him; and let the law of the Most High take its course. 18 19
20 All wisdom is the fear of the Lord, and in all wisdom there is the fulfilment of the law. 21
22 But the knowledge of wickedness is not wisdom, nor is there prudence where sinners take counsel.
23 There is a cleverness which is abominable, but there is a fool who merely lacks wisdom.
24 Better is the God-fearing man who lacks intelligence, than the highly prudent man who transgresses the law.
25 There is a cleverness which is scrupulous but unjust, and there are people who distort kindness to gain a verdict.
26 There is a rascal bowed down in mourning, but inwardly he is full of deceit.
27 He hides his face and pretends not to hear; but where no one notices, he will forestall you.
28 And if by lack of strength he is prevented from sinning, he will do evil when he finds an opportunity.
29 A man is known by his appearance, and a sensible man is known by his face, when you meet him.
30 A man's attire and open-mouthed laughter, and a man's manner of walking, show what he is.
20 1 There is a reproof which is not timely; and there is a man who keeps silent but is wise.
2 How much better it is to reprove than to stay angry! And the one who confesses his fault will be kept from loss.
4 Like a eunuch's desire to violate a maiden is a man who executes judgments by violence.
5 There is one who by keeping silent is found wise, while another is detested for being too talkative.
6 There is one who keeps silent because he has no answer, while another keeps silent because he knows when to speak.
7 A wise man will be silent until the right moment, but a braggart and fool goes beyond the right moment.
8 Whoever uses too many words will be loathed, and whoever usurps the right to speak will be hated.
9 There may be good fortune for a man in adversity, and a windfall may result in a loss.
10 There is a gift that profits you nothing, and there is a gift that brings a double return.
11 There are losses because of glory, and there are men who have raised their heads from humble circumstances.
12 There is a man who buys much for a little, but pays for it seven times over.
13 The wise man makes himself beloved through his words, but the courtesies of fools are wasted.
14 A fool's gift will profit you nothing, for he has many eyes instead of one.
15 He gives little and upbraids much, he opens his mouth like a herald; today he lends and tomorrow he asks it back; such a one is a hateful man.
16 A fool will say, "I have no friend, and there is no gratitude for my good deeds; those who eat my bread speak unkindly."
17 How many will ridicule him, and how often!
18 A slip on the pavement is better than a slip of the tongue; so the downfall of the wicked will occur speedily.
19 An ungracious man is like a story told at the wrong time, which is continually on the lips of the ignorant.
20 A proverb from a fool's lips will be rejected, for he does not tell it at its proper time.
21 A man may be prevented from sinning by his poverty, so when he rests he feels no remorse.
22 A man may lose his life through shame, or lose it because of his foolish look.
23 A man may for shame make promises to a friend, and needlessly make him an enemy.
24 A lie is an ugly blot on a man; it is continually on the lips of the ignorant.
25 A thief is preferable to a habitual liar, but the lot of both is ruin.
26 The disposition of a liar brings disgrace, and his shame is ever with him.
27 He who speaks wisely will advance himself, and a sensible man will please great men.
28 Whoever cultivates the soil will heap up his harvest, and whoever pleases great men will atone for injustice.
29 Presents and gifts blind the eyes of the wise; like a muzzle on the mouth they avert reproofs.
30 Hidden wisdom and unseen treasure, what advantage is there in either of them?
31 Better is the man who hides his folly than the man who hides his wisdom.
21 1 Have you sinned, my son? Do so no more, but pray about your former sins.
2 Flee from sin as from a snake; for if you approach sin, it will bite you. Its teeth are lion's teeth, and destroy the souls of men.
3 All lawlessness is like a two-edged sword; there is no healing for its wound.
4 Terror and violence will lay waste riches; thus the house of the proud will be laid waste.
5 The prayer of a poor man goes from his lips to the ears of God, and his judgment comes speedily.
6 Whoever hates reproof walks in the steps of the sinner, but he that fears the Lord will repent in his heart.
7 He who is mighty in speech is known from afar; but the sensible man, when he slips, is aware of it.
8 A man who builds his house with other people's money is like one who gathers stones for his burial mound.
9 An assembly of the wicked is like tow gathered together, and their end is a flame of fire.
10 The way of sinners is smoothly paved with stones, but at its end is the pit of Hades.
11 Whoever keeps the law controls his thoughts, and wisdom is the fulfilment of the fear of the Lord.
12 He who is not clever cannot be taught, but there is a cleverness which increases bitterness.
13 The knowledge of a wise man will increase like a flood, and his counsel like a flowing spring.
14 The mind of a fool is like a broken jar; it will hold no knowledge.
15 When a man of understanding hears a wise saying, he will praise it and add to it; when a reveler hears it, he dislikes it and casts it behind his back.
16 A fool's narration is like a burden on a journey, but delight will be found in the speech of the intelligent.
17 The utterance of a sensible man will be sought in the assembly, and they will ponder his words in their minds.
18 Like a house that has vanished, so is wisdom to a fool; and the knowledge of the ignorant is unexamined talk.
19 To a senseless man education is fetters on his feet, and like manacles on his right hand.
20 A fool raises his voice when he laughs, but a clever man smiles quietly.
21 To a sensible man education is like a golden ornament, and like a bracelet on the right arm.
22 The foot of a fool rushes into a house, but a man of experience stands respectfully before it.
23 A boor peers into the house from the door, but a cultivated man remains outside.
24 It is ill-mannered for a man to listen at a door, and a discreet man is grieved by the disgrace.
25 The lips of strangers will speak of these things, but the words of the prudent will be weighed in the balance.
26 The mind of fools is in their mouth, but the mouth of wise men is in their mind.
27 When an ungodly man curses his adversary, he curses his own soul.
28 A whisperer defiles his own soul and is hated in his neighborhood.
22 1 The indolent may be compared to a filthy stone, and every one hisses at his disgrace.
2 The indolent may be compared to the filth of dunghills; any one that picks it up will shake it off his hand.
3 It is a disgrace to be the father of an undisciplined son, and the birth of a daughter is a loss.
4 A sensible daughter obtains her husband, but one who acts shamefully brings grief to her father.
5 An impudent daughter disgraces father and husband, and will be despised by both.
6 Like music in mourning is a tale told at the wrong time, but chastising and discipline are wisdom at all times. 7 He who teaches a fool is like one who glues potsherds together, or who rouses a sleeper from deep slumber. 8 He who tells a story to a fool tells it to a drowsy man; and at the end he will say, "What is it?"
11 Weep for the dead, for he lacks the light; and weep for the fool, for he lacks intelligence; weep less bitterly for the dead, for he has attained rest; but the life of the fool is worse than death.
12 Mourning for the dead lasts seven days, but for a fool or an ungodly man it lasts all his life.
13 Do not talk much with a foolish man, and do not visit an unintelligent man; guard yourself from him to escape trouble, and you will not be soiled when he shakes himself off; avoid him and you will find rest, and you will never be wearied by his madness.
14 What is heavier than lead? And what is its name except "Fool"?
15 Sand, salt, and a piece of iron are easier to bear than a stupid man.
16 A wooden beam firmly bonded into a building will not be torn loose by an earthquake; so the mind firmly fixed on a reasonable counsel will not be afraid in a crisis.
17 A mind settled on an intelligent thought is like the stucco decoration on the wall of a colonnade.
18 Fences set on a high place will not stand firm against the wind; so a timid heart with a fool's purpose will not stand firm against any fear.
19 A man who pricks an eye will make tears fall, and one who pricks the heart makes it show feeling.
20 One who throws a stone at birds scares them away, and one who reviles a friend will break off the friendship.
21 Even if you have drawn your sword against a friend, do not despair, for a renewal of friendship is possible.
22 If you have opened your mouth against your friend, do not worry, for reconciliation is possible; but as for reviling, arrogance, disclosure of secrets, or a treacherous blow -- in these cases any friend will flee.
23 Gain the trust of your neighbor in his poverty, that you may rejoice with him in his prosperity; stand by him in time of affliction, that you may share with him in his inheritance.
24 The vapor and smoke of the furnace precede the fire; so insults precede bloodshed.
25 I will not be ashamed to protect a friend, and I will not hide from him;
26 but if some harm should happen to me because of him, whoever hears of it will beware of him.
27 O that a guard were set over my mouth, and a seal of prudence upon my lips, that it may keep me from falling, so that my tongue may not destroy me!
23 1 O Lord, Father and Ruler of my life, do not abandon me to their counsel, and let me not fall because of them!
2 O that whips were set over my thoughts, and the discipline of wisdom over my mind! That they may not spare me in my errors, and that it may not pass by my sins;
3 in order that my mistakes may not be multiplied, and my sins may not abound; then I will not fall before my adversaries, and my enemy will not rejoice over me.
4 O Lord, Father and God of my life, do not give me haughty eyes,
5 and remove from me evil desire.
6 Let neither gluttony nor lust overcome me, and do not surrender me to a shameless soul.
7 Listen, my children, to instruction concerning speech; the one who observes it will never be caught.
8 The sinner is overtaken through his lips, the reviler and the arrogant are tripped by them.
9 Do not accustom your mouth to oaths, and do not habitually utter the name of the Holy One;
10 for as a servant who is continually examined under torture will not lack bruises, so also the man who always swears and utters the Name will not be cleansed from sin.
11 A man who swears many oaths will be filled with iniquity, and the scourge will not leave his house; if he offends, his sin remains on him, and if he disregards it, he sins doubly; if he has sworn needlessly, he will not be justified, for his house will be filled with calamities.
12 There is an utterance which is comparable to death; may it never be found in the inheritance of Jacob! For all these errors will be far from the godly, and they will not wallow in sins.
13 Do not accustom your mouth to lewd vulgarity, for it involves sinful speech.
14 Remember your father and mother when you sit among great men; lest you be forgetful in their presence, and be deemed a fool on account of your habits; then you will wish that you had never been born, and you will curse the day of your birth.
15 A man accustomed to use insulting words will never become disciplined all his days.
16 Two sorts of men multiply sins, and a third incurs wrath. The soul heated like a burning fire will not be quenched until it is consumed; a man who commits fornication with his near of kin will never cease until the fire burns him up.
17 To a fornicator all bread tastes sweet; he will never cease until he dies.
18 A man who breaks his marriage vows says to himself, "Who sees me? Darkness surrounds me, and the walls hide me, and no one sees me. Why should I fear? The Most High will not take notice of my sins."
19 His fear is confined to the eyes of men, and he does not realize that the eyes of the Lord are ten thousand times brighter than the sun; they look upon all the ways of men, and perceive even the hidden places.
20 Before the universe was created, it was known to him; so it was also after it was finished.
21 This man will be punished in the streets of the city, and where he least suspects it, he will be seized.
22 So it is with a woman who leaves her husband and provides an heir by a stranger.
23 For first of all, she has disobeyed the law of the Most High; second, she has committed an offense against her husband; and third, she has committed adultery through harlotry and brought forth children by another man.
24 She herself will be brought before the assembly, and punishment will fall on her children.
25 Her children will not take root, and her branches will not bear fruit.
26 She will leave her memory for a curse, and her disgrace will not be blotted out.
27 Those who survive her will recognize that nothing is better than the fear of the Lord, and nothing sweeter than to heed the commandments of the Lord.
24 1 Wisdom will praise herself, and will glory in the midst of her people.
2 In the assembly of the Most High she will open her mouth, and in the presence of his host she will glory:
3 "I came forth from the mouth of the Most High, and covered the earth like a mist.
4 I dwelt in high places, and my throne was in a pillar of cloud.
5 Alone I have made the circuit of the vault of heaven and have walked in the depths of the abyss.
6 In the waves of the sea, in the whole earth, and in every people and nation I have gotten a possession.
7 Among all these I sought a resting place; I sought in whose territory I might lodge.
8 "Then the Creator of all things gave me a commandment, and the one who created me assigned a place for my tent. And he said, `Make your dwelling in Jacob, and in Israel receive your inheritance.'
9 From eternity, in the beginning, he created me, and for eternity I shall not cease to exist.
10 In the holy tabernacle I ministered before him, and so I was established in Zion.
11 In the beloved city likewise he gave me a resting place, and in Jerusalem was my dominion.
12 So I took root in an honored people, in the portion of the Lord, who is their inheritance.
13 "I grew tall like a cedar in Lebanon, and like a cypress on the heights of Hermon.
14 I grew tall like a palm tree in Engedi, and like rose plants in Jericho; like a beautiful olive tree in the field, and like a plane tree I grew tall.
15 Like cassia and camel's thorn I gave forth the aroma of spices, and like choice myrrh I spread a pleasant odor, like galbanum, onycha, and stacte, and like the fragrance of frankincense in the tabernacle.
16 Like a terebinth I spread out my branches, and my branches are glorious and graceful.
17 Like a vine I caused loveliness to bud, and my blossoms became glorious and abundant fruit. 18
19 "Come to me, you who desire me, and eat your fill of my produce.
20 For the remembrance of me is sweeter than honey, and my inheritance sweeter than the honeycomb.
21 Those who eat me will hunger for more, and those who drink me will thirst for more.
22 Whoever obeys me will not be put to shame, and those who work with my help will not sin."
23 All this is the book of the covenant of the Most High God, the law which Moses commanded us as an inheritance for the congregations of Jacob. 24
25 It fills men with wisdom, like the Pishon, and like the Tigris at the time of the first fruits.
26 It makes them full of understanding, like the Euphrates, and like the Jordan at harvest time.
27 It makes instruction shine forth like light, like the Gihon at the time of vintage.
28 Just as the first man did not know her perfectly, the last one has not fathomed her;
29 for her thought is more abundant than the sea, and her counsel deeper than the great abyss.
30 I went forth like a canal from a river and like a water channel into a garden.
31 I said, "I will water my orchard and drench my garden plot"; and lo, my canal became a river, and my river became a sea.
32 I will again make instruction shine forth like the dawn, and I will make it shine afar;
33 I will again pour out teaching like prophecy, and leave it to all future generations.
34 Observe that I have not labored for myself alone, but for all who seek instruction.
25 1 My soul takes pleasure in three things, and they are beautiful in the sight of the Lord and of men; agreement between brothers, friendship between neighbors, and a wife and a husband who live in harmony.
2 My soul hates three kinds of men, and I am greatly offended at their life: a beggar who is proud, a rich man who is a liar, and an adulterous old man who lacks good sense.
3 You have gathered nothing in your youth; how then can you find anything in your old age?
4 What an attractive thing is judgment in gray-haired men, and for the aged to possess good counsel!
5 How attractive is wisdom in the aged, and understanding and counsel in honorable men!
6 Rich experience is the crown of the aged, and their boast is the fear of the Lord.
7 With nine thoughts I have gladdened my heart, and a tenth I shall tell with my tongue: a man rejoicing in his children; a man who lives to see the downfall of his foes;
8 happy is he who lives with an intelligent wife, and he who has not made a slip with his tongue, and he who has not served a man inferior to himself;
9 happy is he who has gained good sense, and he who speaks to attentive listeners.
10 How great is he who has gained wisdom! But there is no one superior to him who fears the Lord.
11 The fear of the Lord surpasses everything; to whom shall be likened the one who holds it fast? 12
13 Any wound, but not a wound of the heart! Any wickedness, but not the wickedness of a wife!
14 Any attack, but not an attack from those who hate! And any vengeance, but not the vengeance of enemies!
15 There is no venom worse than a snake's venom, and no wrath worse than an enemy's wrath.
16 I would rather dwell with a lion and a dragon than dwell with an evil wife.
17 The wickedness of a wife changes her appearance, and darkens her face like that of a bear.
18 Her husband takes his meals among the neighbors, and he cannot help sighing bitterly.
19 Any iniquity is insignificant compared to a wife's iniquity; may a sinner's lot befall her!
20 A sandy ascent for the feet of the aged -- such is a garrulous wife for a quiet husband.
21 Do not be ensnared by a woman's beauty, and do not desire a woman for her possessions.
22 There is wrath and impudence and great disgrace when a wife supports her husband.
23 A dejected mind, a gloomy face, and a wounded heart are caused by an evil wife. Drooping hands and weak knees are caused by the wife who does not make her husband happy.
24 From a woman sin had its beginning, and because of her we all die.
25 Allow no outlet to water, and no boldness of speech in an evil wife.
26 If she does not go as you direct, separate her from yourself.
Jesus Sirach (RSV) 14