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Ezekiel 17-18 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 17

The Eagles and the Vine. The word of the Lord came to me: Son of man, propose a riddle, and tell this proverb to the house of Israel: Thus says the Lord God:

The great eagle, with wide wingspan
    and long feathers, with thick plumage,
    many-hued, came to Lebanon.
He plucked the crest of the cedar,
    broke off its topmost branch,
And brought it to a land of merchants,
    set it in a city of traders.
Then he took some native seed
    and planted it in fertile soil;
A shoot beside plentiful waters,
    like a willow he planted it,
That it might sprout and become a vine,
    dense and low-lying,
With its branches turned toward him,
    its roots beneath it.
Thus it became a vine, produced branches,
    and put forth shoots.
Then another great eagle appeared,
    with wide wingspan, rich in plumage,
And see! This vine bent its roots to him,
    sent out branches for him to water.
From the bed where it was planted,
    it was transplanted to a fertile field
By abundant waters, to produce branches,
    to bear fruit, to become a majestic vine.
Say: Thus says the Lord God: Can it thrive?
Will he not tear up its roots
    and strip its fruit?
Then all its green leaves will wither—
    neither strong arm nor mighty nation
    is needed to uproot it.
10 True, it is planted; but will it thrive?
    Will it not wither up
When the east wind strikes it,
    wither in the very bed where it sprouted?

11 [a]The word of the Lord came to me:

12 Now say to the rebellious house:
    Do you not understand this? Tell them!
The king of Babylon came to Jerusalem
    and took away its king and officials
    and brought them to him in Babylon.
13 After removing the nobles from the land,
    he then took one of the royal line
And made a covenant with him,
    binding him under oath,
14 To be a humble kingdom,
    without high aspirations,
    to keep his covenant and so survive.
15 But this one rebelled against him
    by sending envoys to Egypt
To obtain horses and a mighty army.
    Can he thrive?
Can he escape if he does this?
    Can he break a covenant and go free?
16 As I live—oracle of the Lord God
    in the house of the king who set him up to rule,
Whose oath he ignored and whose covenant he broke,
    there in Babylon I swear he shall die!
17 Pharaoh shall not help him on the day of battle,
    with a great force and mighty horde,
When ramps are thrown up and siege works built
    for the cutting down of many lives.
18 He ignored his oath, breaking his covenant;
    even though he gave his hand, he did all these things—
    he shall not escape!
19 Therefore, thus says the Lord God:
    As I live, my oath which he spurned,
And my covenant which he broke,
    I will bring down on his head.
20 I will spread my net over him,
    and he will be caught in my snare.
I will bring him to Babylon
    to judge him there
    because he broke faith with me.
21 Any among his forces who escape
    will fall by the sword,
And whoever might survive
    will be scattered to the winds.
Thus you will know that I the Lord have spoken.
22 Thus says the Lord God:
I, too, will pluck from the crest of the cedar
    the highest branch.
From the top a tender shoot
    I will break off and transplant[b]
    on a high, lofty mountain.
23 On the mountain height of Israel
    I will plant it.
It shall put forth branches and bear fruit,
    and become a majestic cedar.
Every small bird will nest under it,
    all kinds of winged birds will dwell
    in the shade of its branches.
24 Every tree of the field will know
    that I am the Lord.
I bring low the high tree,
    lift high the lowly tree,
Wither up the green tree,
    and make the dry tree bloom.
As I, the Lord, have spoken, so will I do!

Chapter 18

Personal Responsibility. The word of the Lord came to me: Son of man, what is the meaning of this proverb you recite in the land of Israel:

“Parents eat sour grapes,
    but the children’s teeth are set on edge”?[c]

As I live—oracle of the Lord God: I swear that none of you will ever repeat this proverb in Israel. For all life is mine: the life of the parent is like the life of the child, both are mine. Only the one who sins shall die!

If a man is just—if he does what is right, if he does not eat on the mountains,[d] or raise his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel; if he does not defile a neighbor’s wife, or have relations with a woman during her period; if he oppresses no one, gives back the pledge received for a debt, commits no robbery; gives food to the hungry and clothes the naked; if he does not lend at interest or exact usury; if he refrains from evildoing and makes a fair judgment between two opponents; if he walks by my statutes and is careful to observe my ordinances, that man is just—he shall surely live—oracle of the Lord God.

10 But if he begets a son who is violent and commits murder, or does any of these things, 11 even though the father does none of them—a son who eats on the mountains, defiles the wife of his neighbor, 12 oppresses the poor and needy, commits robbery, does not give back a pledge, raises his eyes to idols, does abominable things, 13 lends at interest and exacts usury—this son certainly shall not live. Because he practiced all these abominations, he shall surely be put to death; his own blood shall be on him.

14 But, in turn, if he begets a son who sees all the sins his father commits, yet fears and does not imitate him— 15 a son who does not eat on the mountains, or raise his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, or defile a neighbor’s wife; 16 who does not oppress anyone, or exact a pledge, or commit robbery; who gives his food to the hungry and clothes the naked; 17 who refrains from evildoing, accepts no interest or usury, but keeps my ordinances and walks in my statutes—this one shall not die for the sins of his father. He shall surely live! 18 Only the father, since he committed extortion and robbed his brother, and did what was not good among his people—he will die because of his sin! 19 You ask: “Why is not the son charged with the guilt of his father?” Because the son has done what is just and right and has been careful to observe all my statutes—he shall surely live! 20 Only the one who sins shall die. The son shall not be charged with the guilt of his father, nor shall the father be charged with the guilt of his son. Justice belongs to the just, and wickedness to the wicked.

21 But if the wicked man turns away from all the sins he has committed, if he keeps all my statutes and does what is just and right, he shall surely live. He shall not die! 22 None of the crimes he has committed shall be remembered against him; he shall live because of the justice he has shown. 23 Do I find pleasure in the death of the wicked—oracle of the Lord God? Do I not rejoice when they turn from their evil way and live?

24 And if the just turn from justice and do evil, like all the abominations the wicked do, can they do this evil and still live? None of the justice they did shall be remembered, because they acted treacherously and committed these sins; because of this, they shall die. 25 You say, “The Lord’s way is not fair!”[e] Hear now, house of Israel: Is it my way that is unfair? Are not your ways unfair? 26 When the just turn away from justice to do evil and die, on account of the evil they did they must die. 27 But if the wicked turn from the wickedness they did and do what is right and just, they save their lives; 28 since they turned away from all the sins they committed, they shall live; they shall not die. 29 But the house of Israel says, “The Lord’s way is not fair!” Is it my way that is not fair, house of Israel? Is it not your ways that are not fair?

30 Therefore I will judge you, house of Israel, all of you according to your ways—oracle of the Lord God. Turn, turn back from all your crimes, that they may not be a cause of sin for you ever again. 31 Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit. Why should you die, house of Israel? 32 For I find no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies—oracle of the Lord God. Turn back and live!

Footnotes:

  1. 17:11–21 These verses explain the allegory in vv. 3–10. In 597 B.C., Nebuchadnezzar removed Jehoiachin from the throne and took him into exile; in his place he set Zedekiah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, on the throne and received from him the oath of loyalty. But Zedekiah was persuaded to rebel by Pharaoh Hophra of Egypt and thus deserved punishment; cf. 2 Kgs 24:10–25:7.
  2. 17:22–23 The Lord will undo the actions of the Babylonian king by rebuilding the Davidic dynasty so the nations realize that only Israel’s God can restore a people’s destiny.
  3. 18:2 Parents…on edge: a proverb the people quoted to complain that they were being punished for their ancestors’ sins; cf. Jer 31:29.
  4. 18:6 Eat on the mountains: take part in meals after sacrifice at the high places.
  5. 18:25 The Lord’s way is not fair: this chapter rejects the idea that punishment is transferred from one generation to the next and emphasizes individual responsibility and accountability.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Ben Sira 30:1-13 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 30

The Training of Children[a]

Whoever loves a son will chastise him often,
    that he may be his joy when he grows up.
Whoever disciplines a son will benefit from him,
    and boast of him among acquaintances.
Whoever educates a son will make his enemy jealous,
    and rejoice in him among his friends.
At the father’s death, he will seem not dead,
    for he leaves after him one like himself,
Whom he looked upon through life with joy,
    and in death, without regret.
Against his enemies he has left an avenger,
    and one to repay his friends with kindness.

Whoever spoils a son will have wounds to bandage,
    and will suffer heartache at every cry.
An untamed horse turns out stubborn;
    and a son left to himself grows up unruly.
Pamper a child and he will be a terror for you,
    indulge him, and he will bring you grief.
10 Do not laugh with him lest you share sorrow with him,
    and in the end you will gnash your teeth.
11 Do not give him his own way in his youth,
    and do not ignore his follies.
12 Bow down his head in his youth,
    beat his sides while he is still young,
Lest he become stubborn and disobey you,
    and leave you disconsolate.
13 Discipline your son and make heavy his yoke,
    lest you be offended by his shamelessness.

Footnotes:

  1. 30:1–13 Sound discipline (which would include physical beating) and careful education of children correct self-indulgence and stubbornness, prevent remorse and humiliation, and bring to parents lasting joy and delight, prestige among friends, jealousy of enemies, perpetuation and vindication of themselves through their offspring (vv. 1–6). Lack of discipline and overindulgence of children bring sorrow and disappointment, terror and grief (vv. 7–13).
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

1 John 1 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

I. Prologue

Chapter 1

The Word of Life[a]

What was from the beginning,
    what we have heard,
    what we have seen with our eyes,
    what we looked upon
    and touched with our hands
    concerns the Word of life—
for the life was made visible;
    we have seen it and testify to it
    and proclaim to you the eternal life
    that was with the Father and was made visible to us—
what we have seen and heard
    we proclaim now to you,
    so that you too may have fellowship with us;
    for our fellowship is with the Father
    and with his Son, Jesus Christ.
We are writing this so that our joy may be complete.

II. God As Light

God Is Light. Now this is the message that we have heard from him and proclaim to you: God is light,[b] and in him there is no darkness at all. If we say, “We have fellowship with him,” while we continue to walk in darkness, we lie and do not act in truth. But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of his Son Jesus cleanses us from all sin. If we say, “We are without sin,” we deceive ourselves,[c] and the truth is not in us. If we acknowledge our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrongdoing. 10 If we say, “We have not sinned,” we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

Footnotes:

  1. 1:1–4 There is a striking parallel to the prologue of the gospel of John (Jn 1:1–18), but the emphasis here is not on the preexistent Word but rather on the apostles’ witness to the incarnation of life by their experience of the historical Jesus. He is the Word of life (1 Jn 1:1; cf. Jn 1:4), the eternal life that was with the Father and was made visible (1 Jn 1:2; cf. Jn 1:14), and was heard, seen, looked upon, and touched by the apostles. The purpose of their teaching is to share that life, called fellowship…with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ, with those who receive their witness (1 Jn 1:3; Jn 1:14, 16).
  2. 1:5–7 Light is to be understood here as truth and goodness; darkness here is error and depravity (cf. Jn 3:19–21; 17:17; Eph 5:8). To walk in light or darkness is to live according to truth or error, not merely intellectual but moral as well. Fellowship with God and with one another consists in a life according to the truth as found in God and in Christ.
  3. 1:8–10 Denial of the condition of sin is self-deception and even contradictory of divine revelation; there is also the continual possibility of sin’s recurrence. Forgiveness and deliverance from sin through Christ are assured through acknowledgment of them and repentance.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

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