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Jeremiah 1-2 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

I. Oracles in the Days of Josiah

Chapter 1

The words of Jeremiah, son of Hilkiah, one of the priests from Anathoth,[a] in the land of Benjamin. The word of the Lord came to him in the days of Josiah, son of Amon, king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign, and again in the days of Jehoiakim, son of Josiah, king of Judah, until the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah, son of Josiah, king of Judah—down to the exile of Jerusalem, in the fifth month.

Call of Jeremiah

The word of the Lord came to me:
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
    before you were born I dedicated you,
    a prophet to the nations I appointed you.[b]
“Ah, Lord God!” I said,
    “I do not know how to speak. I am too young!”[c]
But the Lord answered me,
Do not say, “I am too young.”
    To whomever I send you, you shall go;
    whatever I command you, you shall speak.
Do not be afraid of them,
    for I am with you to deliver you—oracle of the Lord.

Then the Lord extended his hand and touched my mouth, saying to me,

See, I place my words in your mouth!
10     Today I appoint you
    over nations and over kingdoms,
To uproot and to tear down,
    to destroy and to demolish,
    to build and to plant.

11 The word of the Lord came to me: What do you see, Jeremiah? “I see a branch of the almond tree,”[d] I replied. 12 Then the Lord said to me: You have seen well, for I am watching over my word to carry it out. 13 A second time the word of the Lord came to me: What do you see? I replied, “I see a boiling kettle whose mouth is tipped away from the north.”[e]

14 The Lord said to me, And from the north evil will pour out over all who dwell in the land.

15 Look, I am summoning
    all the kingdoms of the north—oracle of the Lord
Each king shall come and set up his throne
    in the gateways of Jerusalem,
Against all its surrounding walls
    and against all the cities of Judah.
16 I will pronounce my sentence against them
    for all their wickedness in forsaking me,
In burning incense to other gods,
    in bowing down to the works of their hands.
17 But you, prepare yourself;
    stand up and tell them
    all that I command you.
Do not be terrified on account of them,
    or I will terrify you before them;
18 For I am the one who today
    makes you a fortified city,
A pillar of iron, a wall of bronze,
    against the whole land:
Against Judah’s kings and princes,
    its priests and the people of the land.
19 They will fight against you, but not prevail over you,
    for I am with you to deliver you—oracle of the Lord.

Chapter 2

Infidelity of Israel.[f] The word of the Lord came to me: Go, cry out this message for Jerusalem to hear!

I remember the devotion[g] of your youth,
    how you loved me as a bride,
Following me in the wilderness,
    in a land unsown.
Israel was dedicated to the Lord,
    the first fruits[h] of his harvest;
All who ate of it were held guilty,
    evil befell them—oracle of the Lord.
Listen to the word of the Lord, house of Jacob!
    All you clans of the house of Israel,
    thus says the Lord:
What fault did your ancestors find in me
    that they withdrew from me,
Went after emptiness,
    and became empty themselves?
They did not ask, “Where is the Lord
    who brought us up from the land of Egypt,
Who led us through the wilderness,
    through a land of wastes and ravines,
A land of drought and darkness,
    a land which no one crosses,
    where no one dwells?”
I brought you into the garden land
    to eat its fine fruits,
But you entered and defiled my land,
    you turned my heritage into an abomination.
The priests did not ask,
    “Where is the Lord?”
The experts in the law[i] did not know me:
    the shepherds rebelled against me.
The prophets prophesied by Baal,
    and went after useless idols.
Therefore I will again accuse you—oracle of the Lord
    even your children’s children I will accuse.
10 Cross to the coast of Cyprus and see,
    send to Kedar[j] and carefully inquire:
    Where has anything like this been done?
11 Does any other nation change its gods?—
    even though they are not gods at all!
But my people have changed their glory
    for useless things.
12 Be horrified at this, heavens;
    shudder, be appalled—oracle of the Lord.
13 Two evils my people have done:
    they have forsaken me, the source of living waters;
They have dug themselves cisterns,
    broken cisterns that cannot hold water.
14 Is Israel a slave, a house-born servant?[k]
    Why then has he become plunder?
15 Against him lions roar,
    they raise their voices.
They have turned his land into a waste;
    his cities are charred ruins, without an inhabitant.
16 Yes, the people of Memphis[l] and Tahpanhes
    shave the crown of your head.
17 Has not forsaking the Lord, your God,
    done this to you?
18 And now, why go to Egypt,[m]
    to drink the waters of the Nile?
Why go to Assyria,
    to drink the waters of the River?
19 Your own wickedness chastises you,
    your own infidelities punish you.
Know then, and see, how evil and bitter
    is your forsaking the Lord, your God,
And your showing no fear of me,
    oracle of the Lord, the God of hosts.
20 Long ago you broke your yoke,
    you tore off your bonds.
    You said, “I will not serve.”
On every high hill, under every green tree,
    you sprawled and served as a prostitute.[n]
21 But I had planted you as a choice vine,
    all pedigreed stock;
How could you turn out so obnoxious to me,
    a spurious vine?
22 Even if you scour it with lye,
    and use much soap,
The stain of your guilt is still before me,
    oracle of the Lord God.
23 How can you say, “I am not defiled,
    I have not pursued the Baals”?
Consider your conduct in the Valley,[o]
    recall what you have done:
A skittish young camel,
    running back and forth,
24     a wild donkey bred in the wilderness,
Sniffing the wind in her desire—
    who can restrain her lust?
None seeking her need tire themselves;
    in her time they will find her.
25 Stop wearing out your feet
    and parching your throat!
But you say, “No use! No!
    How I love these strangers,
    after them I must go.”
26 As the thief is shamed when caught,
    so shall the house of Israel be shamed:
They, their kings, their princes,
    their priests and their prophets;
27 They say to a piece of wood, “You are my father,”
    and to a stone, “You gave me birth.”
They turn their backs to me, not their faces;
    yet in their time of trouble they cry out,
    “Rise up and save us!”
28 Where are the gods you made for yourselves?
    Let them rise up!
    Will they save you in your time of trouble?
For as numerous as your cities
    are your gods, O Judah!
And as many as the streets of Jerusalem
    are the altars you have set up for Baal.
29 Why are you arguing with me?
    You have all rebelled against me—oracle of the Lord.
30 In vain I struck your children;
    correction they did not take.
Your sword devoured your prophets
    like a ravening lion.
31 You people of this generation,
    consider the word of the Lord:
Have I become a wilderness to Israel,
    a land of gloom?
Why then do my people say, “We have moved on,
    we will not come to you any more”?
32 Does a young woman forget her jewelry,
    a bride her sash?
Yet my people have forgotten me
    days without number.
33 How well you pick your way
    when seeking love!
In your wickedness,
    you have gone by ways unclean!
34 On your clothing is
    the life-blood of the innocent,
    you did not find them committing burglary;
35 Nonetheless you say, “I am innocent;
    at least, his anger is turned away from me.”
Listen! I will judge you
    on that word of yours, “I have not sinned.”
36 How frivolous you have become
    in changing your course!
By Egypt you will be shamed,
    just as you were shamed by Assyria.
37 From there too you will go out,
    your hands upon your head;
For the Lord has rejected those in whom you trust,
    with them you will have no success.

Footnotes:

  1. 1:1 Anathoth: a village about three miles northeast of Jerusalem, to which Solomon had exiled Abiathar the priest (1 Kgs 2:26–27); it is likely that Jeremiah belonged to that priestly family.
  2. 1:5 Jeremiah was destined to become a prophet before his birth; cf. Is 49:1, 5; Lk 1:15; Gal 1:15–16. I knew you: I loved you and chose you. I dedicated you: I set you apart to be a prophet. The nations: the neighbors of Judah, along with Assyria, Babylonia, and Egypt.
  3. 1:6 I am too young: like Moses (Ex 3:11, 13; 4:10), Jeremiah at first resists God’s call. This narrative is perhaps patterned after the story of Moses’ call in order to identify Jeremiah as the prophet “like me” in Dt 18:15.
  4. 1:11 There is wordplay between the Hebrew noun shaqed, “almond tree,” and the Hebrew verb shoqed, “watcher/watching.” Because the almond tree begins to bloom in late winter in Palestine, it is called “the watcher” for the coming of spring. God is also “watcher,” observing the fulfillment of the prophetic word.
  5. 1:13 Kettle…the north: symbol of an invasion from the north; cf. vv. 14–15.
  6. 2:1–3:5 These chapters may contain some of Jeremiah’s early preaching. He portrays Israel as the wife of the Lord, faithful only in the beginning, when she walked behind him (2:2–3, 5; 3:1). Consistent with the marriage metaphor, he describes her present unfaithfulness as adultery (2:20; 3:2–3); now she walks behind the Baals.
  7. 2:2 Devotion: Heb. hesed; Israel’s gratitude, fidelity, and love for God.
  8. 2:3 First fruits: the first yield of a harvest offered as a sign of dependence on and gratitude toward the Lord of the land, thus divine property. Israel, then, is a gift made to God, set apart for his use; cf. Ex 23:19.
  9. 2:8 Experts in the law: the priests. The shepherds: the kings and nobles.
  10. 2:10 Kedar: a nomadic tribe in north Arabia. Cyprus and Kedar represent west and east.
  11. 2:14 House-born servant: one born in the master’s house, in contrast to a slave acquired by purchase or as a captive; cf. Lv 22:11.
  12. 2:16 Memphis: the capital of Lower Egypt. Tahpanhes: a frontier city of Egypt, east of the Delta. Shave the crown of your head: an image for Egypt plundering Judah; perhaps a reference to the capture of King Jehoahaz in 609 B.C. (2 Kgs 23:34).
  13. 2:18 Egypt and Assyria were the competing foreign powers favored by rival parties within Judah. The desire for such foreign alliances is a further desertion of the Lord, the source of living waters (v. 13), in favor of the above-named powers, symbolized by the waters of the Nile and the Euphrates rivers.
  14. 2:20 Served as a prostitute: idolatry (because Israel is the “bride” of God); cf. vv. 2–3.
  15. 2:23 The Valley: probably Ben-hinnom, south of Jerusalem, site of the sanctuary of Topheth, where children were sacrificed to Molech; cf. 7:31.
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 8:10-19 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

10 Do not kindle the coals of sinners,
    lest you be burned in their flaming fire.
11 Do not give ground before scoundrels;
    it will set them in ambush against you.[a]
12 Do not lend to one more powerful than yourself;
    or if you lend, count it as lost.
13 Do not give collateral beyond your means;
    consider any collateral a debt you must pay.

14 Do not go to court against a judge,
    for the case will be settled in his favor.
15 Do not travel with the ruthless
    lest they weigh you down with calamity;
For they will only go their own way,
    and through their folly you will also perish.
16 Do not defy the quick-tempered,
    or ride with them through the desert.
For bloodshed is nothing to them;
    when there is no one to help, they will destroy you.

17 Do not take counsel with simpletons,
    for they cannot keep a confidence.
18 Before a stranger do nothing that should be kept secret,
    for you do not know what it will produce later on.[b]
19 Open your heart to no one,
    do not banish your happiness.

Footnotes:

  1. 8:11 Giving in to the wicked only encourages them to take advantage.
  2. 8:18 To keep a secret, or a confidence, is a major concern of Ben Sira; cf. 1:30; 22:22; 27:16–21; 37:10; 42:1.
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.

2 Timothy 1 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

I. Address

Chapter 1

Greeting.[a] Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God for the promise of life in Christ Jesus,[b] to Timothy, my dear child: grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

Thanksgiving. I am grateful to God, whom I worship with a clear conscience as my ancestors did,[c] as I remember you constantly in my prayers, night and day. [d]I yearn to see you again, recalling your tears, so that I may be filled with joy, as I recall your sincere faith that first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and that I am confident lives also in you.

II. Exhortations to Timothy

The Gifts Timothy Has Received. For this reason, I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God[e] that you have through the imposition of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control. So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord,[f] nor of me, a prisoner for his sake; but bear your share of hardship for the gospel with the strength that comes from God.

[g]He saved us and called us to a holy life, not according to our works but according to his own design and the grace bestowed on us in Christ Jesus before time began, 10 but now made manifest through the appearance of our savior Christ Jesus, who destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, 11 [h]for which I was appointed preacher and apostle and teacher. 12 [i]On this account I am suffering these things; but I am not ashamed, for I know him in whom I have believed and am confident that he is able to guard what has been entrusted to me until that day. 13 Take as your norm the sound words that you heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 14 Guard this rich trust with the help of the holy Spirit that dwells within us.

Paul’s Suffering. 15 [j]You know that everyone in Asia deserted me, including Phygelus and Hermogenes. 16 [k]May the Lord grant mercy to the family of Onesiphorus because he often gave me new heart and was not ashamed of my chains. 17 But when he came to Rome, he promptly searched for me and found me. 18 May the Lord grant him to find mercy from the Lord[l] on that day. And you know very well the services he rendered in Ephesus.

Footnotes:

  1. 1:1–2 For the formula of address and greeting, see note on Rom 1:1–7.
  2. 1:1 The promise of life in Christ Jesus: that God grants through union with Christ in faith and love; cf. Col 3:4; 1 Tm 4:8.
  3. 1:3 As my ancestors did: this emphasizes the continuity of Judaism and Christianity; for a similar view, see Rom 9:3–5; Phil 3:4–6.
  4. 1:4–5 Purportedly written from prison in Rome (2 Tm 1:8, 17; 4:6–8) shortly before the writer’s death, the letter recalls the earlier sorrowful parting from Timothy, commending him for his faith and expressing the longing to see him again.
  5. 1:6 The gift of God: the grace resulting from the conferral of an ecclesiastical office. The imposition of my hands: see note on 1 Tm 4:14.
  6. 1:8 Do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord: i.e., of preaching and suffering for the sake of the gospel.
  7. 1:9–10 Redemption from sin and the call to holiness of life are not won by personal deeds but are freely and graciously bestowed according to God’s eternal plan; cf. Eph 1:4.
  8. 1:11 Teacher: the overwhelming majority of manuscripts and Fathers read “teacher of the nations,” undoubtedly a harmonization with 1 Tm 2:7.
  9. 1:12 He is able to guard…until that day: the intervening words can also be translated “what I have entrusted to him” (i.e., the fruit of his ministry) as well as “what has been entrusted to me” (i.e., the faith). The same difficult term occurs in 2 Tm 1:14, where it is modified by the adjective “rich” and used without a possessive.
  10. 1:15 Keen disappointment is expressed, here and later (2 Tm 4:16), that the Christians of the province of Asia, especially Phygelus and Hermogenes, should have abandoned the writer and done nothing to defend his case in court.
  11. 1:16–18 The family of Onesiphorus because he…of my chains: Onesiphorus seems to have died before this letter was written. His family is mentioned twice (here and in 2 Tm 4:19), though it was Onesiphorus himself who was helpful to Paul in prison and rendered much service to the community of Ephesus. Because the apostle complains of abandonment by all in Asia during his second imprisonment and trial, the assistance of Onesiphorus seems to have been given to Paul during his first Roman imprisonment (A.D. 61–63).
  12. 1:18 Lord…Lord: the first “Lord” here seems to refer to Christ, the second “Lord” to the Father.
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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