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Jeremiah 11-12 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 11

Plea for Fidelity to the Covenant. The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: Speak to the people of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and say to them: Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Cursed be anyone who does not observe the words of this covenant, which I commanded your ancestors the day I brought them up out of the land of Egypt, that iron furnace, saying: Listen to my voice and do all that I command you. Then you shall be my people, and I will be your God. Thus I will fulfill the oath I swore to your ancestors, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, the one you have today. “Amen, Lord,” I answered.

Then the Lord said to me: Proclaim all these words in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem: Hear the words of this covenant and obey them. I warned your ancestors unceasingly from the day I brought them up out of the land of Egypt even to this day: obey my voice. But they did not listen or obey. They each walked in the stubbornness of their evil hearts, till I brought upon them all the threats of this covenant which they had failed to observe as I commanded them.

A conspiracy has been found, the Lord said to me, among the people of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem: 10 They have returned to the crimes of their ancestors who refused to obey my words. They also have followed and served other gods; the house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken the covenant I made with their ancestors. 11 Therefore, thus says the Lord: See, I am bringing upon them a disaster they cannot escape. Though they cry out to me, I will not listen to them. 12 Then the cities of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem will go and cry out to the gods to whom they have been offering incense. But these gods will give them no help whatever in the time of their disaster.

13 For as many as your cities
    are your gods, O Judah!
As many as the streets of Jerusalem
    are the altars for sacrifice to Baal.

14 Now, you must not intercede for this people; do not raise on their behalf a cry or prayer! I will not listen when they call to me in the time of their disaster.

Sacrifices of No Avail

15 What right has my beloved in my house,
    while she devises her plots?
Can vows and sacred meat turn away
    your disaster from you?
Will you still be jubilant
16     when you hear the great tumult?
The Lord has named you
    “a spreading olive tree, a pleasure to behold”;
Now he sets fire to it,
    its branches burn.

17 The Lord of hosts who planted you has decreed disaster for you because of the evil done by the house of Israel and by the house of Judah, who provoked me by sacrificing to Baal.

The Plot Against Jeremiah. 18 I knew it because the Lord informed me: at that time you showed me their doings.

19 Yet I was like a trusting lamb led to slaughter, not knowing that they were hatching plots against me: “Let us destroy the tree in its vigor; let us cut him off from the land of the living, so that his name will no longer be remembered.”

20 But, you, Lord of hosts, just Judge,
    searcher of mind and heart,
Let me witness the vengeance you take on them,
    for to you I have entrusted my cause!

21 Therefore, thus says the Lord concerning the men of Anathoth who seek your life and say, “Do not prophesy in the name of the Lord; otherwise you shall die by our hand.” 22 Therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: I am going to punish them. The young men shall die by the sword; their sons and daughters shall die by famine. 23 None shall be spared among them, for I will bring disaster upon the men of Anathoth, the year of their punishment.

Chapter 12

You would be in the right, O Lord,
    if I should dispute with you;
    even so, I must lay out the case against you.
Why does the way of the wicked prosper,
    why do all the treacherous live in contentment?
You planted them; they have taken root,
    they flourish and bear fruit as well.
You are upon their lips,
    but far from their thoughts.
Lord, you know me, you see me,
    you have found that my heart is with you.
Pick them out like sheep for the butcher,
    set them apart for the day of slaughter.[a]
How long must the land mourn,
    the grass of the whole countryside wither?
Because of the wickedness of those who dwell in it
    beasts and birds disappear,
    for they say, “God does not care about our future.”

If running against men has wearied you,
    how will you race against horses?
And if you are safe only on a level stretch,
    what will you do in the jungle of the Jordan?

Your kindred and your father’s house, even they betray you; they have recruited a force against you. Do not believe them, even when they speak fair words to you.

The Lord’s Complaint

I have abandoned my house,
    cast off my heritage;
The beloved of my soul I have delivered
    into the hand of her foes.
My heritage has become for me
    like a lion in the thicket;
She has raised her voice against me,
    therefore she has incurred my hatred.
My heritage is a prey for hyenas,
    is surrounded by vultures;
Come, gather together, all you wild animals,
    come and eat!
10 Many shepherds have ravaged my vineyard,
    have trampled down my heritage;
My delightful portion they have turned
    into a desert waste.
11 They have made it a mournful waste,
    desolate before me,
Desolate, the whole land,
    because no one takes it to heart.
12 Upon every height in the wilderness
    marauders have appeared.
The Lord has a sword that consumes
    the land from end to end:
    no peace for any living thing.
13 They have sown wheat and reaped thorns,
    they have tired themselves out for no purpose;
They are shamed by their harvest,
    the burning anger of the Lord.

Judah’s Neighbors. 14 Thus says the Lord, against all my evil neighbors[b] who plunder the heritage I gave my people Israel as their own: See, I will uproot them from their land; the house of Judah I will uproot in their midst.

15 But after uprooting them, I will have compassion on them again and bring them back, each to their heritage, each to their land. 16 And if they truly learn my people’s custom of swearing by my name, “As the Lord lives,” just as they taught my people to swear by Baal, then they shall be built up in the midst of my people. 17 But if they do not obey, I will uproot and destroy that nation entirely—oracle of the Lord.

Footnotes:

  1. 12:3 Jeremiah calls the Lord to account for allowing the wicked to flourish while he himself is persecuted for his fidelity to the Lord’s mission; cf. 20:12. See Jesus’ judgment, Mk 9:42. The metaphors indicate that Jeremiah has even greater trials ahead of him.
  2. 12:14 My evil neighbors: nations surrounding Israel, the land belonging to the Lord; cf. Is 8:8.
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 11:18-34 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

18 Some become rich through a miser’s life,
    and this is their allotted reward:
19 When they say: “I have found rest,
    now I will feast on my goods,”
They do not know how long it will be
    till they die and leave them to others.[a]

20 My child, stand by your agreement and attend to it,
    grow old while doing your work.
21 Do not marvel at the works of a sinner,
    but trust in the Lord and wait for his light;
For it is easy in the eyes of the Lord
    suddenly, in an instant, to make the poor rich.

22 God’s blessing is the lot of the righteous,
    and in due time their hope bears fruit.
23 Do not say: “What do I need?
    What further benefits can be mine?”
24 Do not say: “I am self-sufficient.
    What harm can come to me now?”
25 The day of prosperity makes one forget adversity;
    the day of adversity makes one forget prosperity.

26 For it is easy for the Lord on the day of death[b]
    to repay mortals according to their conduct.
27 A time of affliction brings forgetfulness of past delights;
    at the end of life one’s deeds are revealed.
28 Call none happy before death,
    for how they end, they are known.

Care in Choosing Friends

29 Not everyone should be brought into your house,
    for many are the snares of the crafty.
30 Like a decoy partridge in a cage, so is the heart of the proud,
    and like a spy they will pick out the weak spots.
31 For they lie in wait to turn good into evil,
    and to praiseworthy deeds they attach blame.
32 One spark kindles many coals;
    a sinner lies in wait for blood.
33 Beware of scoundrels, for they breed only evil,
    and they may give you a lasting stain.
34 Admit strangers into your home, and they will stir up trouble
    and make you a stranger to your own family.

Footnotes:

  1. 11:19 Cf. the parable of the rich man, Lk 12:16–21.
  2. 11:26–28 Ben Sira thought that divine retribution took place only in the present life, and even at the end of life; cf. 9:12; 14:16–17.
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.

John 1:1-23 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

I. Prologue[a]

Chapter 1

In the beginning[b] was the Word,
    and the Word was with God,
    and the Word was God.
He was in the beginning with God.
[c]All things came to be through him,
    and without him nothing came to be.
What came to be through him was life,
    and this life was the light of the human race;
[d]the light shines in the darkness,
    and the darkness has not overcome it.

[e]A man named John was sent from God. He came for testimony,[f] to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.

10 He was in the world,
    and the world came to be through him,
    but the world did not know him.
11 He came to what was his own,
    but his own people[g] did not accept him.

12 But to those who did accept him he gave power to become children of God, to those who believe in his name, 13 [h]who were born not by natural generation nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision but of God.

14 And the Word became flesh[i]
    and made his dwelling among us,
    and we saw his glory,
    the glory as of the Father’s only Son,
    full of grace and truth.

15 [j]John testified to him and cried out, saying, “This was he of whom I said, ‘The one who is coming after me ranks ahead of me because he existed before me.’” 16 From his fullness we have all received, grace in place of grace,[k] 17 because while the law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God. The only Son, God,[l] who is at the Father’s side, has revealed him.

II. The Book of Signs

John the Baptist’s Testimony to Himself. 19 [m]And this is the testimony of John. When the Jews[n] from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites [to him] to ask him, “Who are you?” 20 [o]he admitted and did not deny it, but admitted, “I am not the Messiah.” 21 So they asked him, “What are you then? Are you Elijah?”[p] And he said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” He answered, “No.” 22 So they said to him, “Who are you, so we can give an answer to those who sent us? What do you have to say for yourself?” 23 He said:

“I am ‘the voice of one crying out in the desert,
“Make straight the way of the Lord,”’[q]

as Isaiah the prophet said.”

Footnotes:

  1. 1:1–18 The prologue states the main themes of the gospel: life, light, truth, the world, testimony, and the preexistence of Jesus Christ, the incarnate Logos, who reveals God the Father. In origin, it was probably an early Christian hymn. Its closest parallel is in other christological hymns, Col 1:15–20 and Phil 2:6–11. Its core (Jn 1:1–5, 10–11, 14) is poetic in structure, with short phrases linked by “staircase parallelism,” in which the last word of one phrase becomes the first word of the next. Prose inserts (at least Jn 1:6–8, 15) deal with John the Baptist.
  2. 1:1 In the beginning: also the first words of the Old Testament (Gn 1:1). Was: this verb is used three times with different meanings in this verse: existence, relationship, and predication. The Word (Greek logos): this term combines God’s dynamic, creative word (Genesis), personified preexistent Wisdom as the instrument of God’s creative activity (Proverbs), and the ultimate intelligibility of reality (Hellenistic philosophy). With God: the Greek preposition here connotes communication with another. Was God: lack of a definite article with “God” in Greek signifies predication rather than identification.
  3. 1:3 What came to be: while the oldest manuscripts have no punctuation here, the corrector of Bodmer Papyrus P75, some manuscripts, and the Ante-Nicene Fathers take this phrase with what follows, as staircase parallelism. Connection with Jn 1:3 reflects fourth-century anti-Arianism.
  4. 1:5 The ethical dualism of light and darkness is paralleled in intertestamental literature and in the Dead Sea Scrolls. Overcome: “comprehend” is another possible translation, but cf. Jn 12:35; Wis 7:29–30.
  5. 1:6 John was sent just as Jesus was “sent” (Jn 4:34) in divine mission. Other references to John the Baptist in this gospel emphasize the differences between them and John’s subordinate role.
  6. 1:7 Testimony: the testimony theme of John is introduced, which portrays Jesus as if on trial throughout his ministry. All testify to Jesus: John the Baptist, the Samaritan woman, scripture, his works, the crowds, the Spirit, and his disciples.
  7. 1:11 What was his own…his own people: first a neuter, literally, “his own property/possession” (probably = Israel), then a masculine, “his own people” (the Israelites).
  8. 1:13 Believers in Jesus become children of God not through any of the three natural causes mentioned but through God who is the immediate cause of the new spiritual life. Were born: the Greek verb can mean “begotten” (by a male) or “born” (from a female or of parents). The variant “he who was begotten,” asserting Jesus’ virginal conception, is weakly attested in Old Latin and Syriac versions.
  9. 1:14 Flesh: the whole person, used probably against docetic tendencies (cf. 1 Jn 4:2; 2 Jn 7). Made his dwelling: literally, “pitched his tent/tabernacle.” Cf. the tabernacle or tent of meeting that was the place of God’s presence among his people (Ex 25:8–9). The incarnate Word is the new mode of God’s presence among his people. The Greek verb has the same consonants as the Aramaic word for God’s presence (Shekinah). Glory: God’s visible manifestation of majesty in power, which once filled the tabernacle (Ex 40:34) and the temple (1 Kgs 8:10–11, 27), is now centered in Jesus. Only Son: Greek, monogenēs, but see note on Jn 1:18. Grace and truth: these words may represent two Old Testament terms describing Yahweh in covenant relationship with Israel (cf. Ex 34:6), thus God’s “love” and “fidelity.” The Word shares Yahweh’s covenant qualities.
  10. 1:15 This verse, interrupting Jn 1:14, 16 seems drawn from Jn 1:30.
  11. 1:16 Grace in place of grace: replacement of the Old Covenant with the New (cf. Jn 1:17). Other possible translations are “grace upon grace” (accumulation) and “grace for grace” (correspondence).
  12. 1:18 The only Son, God: while the vast majority of later textual witnesses have another reading, “the Son, the only one” or “the only Son,” the translation above follows the best and earliest manuscripts, monogenēs theos, but takes the first term to mean not just “Only One” but to include a filial relationship with the Father, as at Lk 9:38 (“only child”) or Hb 11:17 (“only son”) and as translated at Jn 1:14. The Logos is thus “only Son” and God but not Father/God.
  13. 1:19–51 The testimony of John the Baptist about the Messiah and Jesus’ self-revelation to the first disciples. This section constitutes the introduction to the gospel proper and is connected with the prose inserts in the prologue. It develops the major theme of testimony in four scenes: John’s negative testimony about himself; his positive testimony about Jesus; the revelation of Jesus to Andrew and Peter; the revelation of Jesus to Philip and Nathanael.
  14. 1:19 The Jews: throughout most of the gospel, the “Jews” does not refer to the Jewish people as such but to the hostile authorities, both Pharisees and Sadducees, particularly in Jerusalem, who refuse to believe in Jesus. The usage reflects the atmosphere, at the end of the first century, of polemics between church and synagogue, or possibly it refers to Jews as representative of a hostile world (Jn 1:10–11).
  15. 1:20 Messiah: the anointed agent of Yahweh, usually considered to be of Davidic descent. See further the note on Jn 1:41.
  16. 1:21 Elijah: the Baptist did not claim to be Elijah returned to earth (cf. Mal 3:19; Mt 11:14). The Prophet: probably the prophet like Moses (Dt 18:15; cf. Acts 3:22).
  17. 1:23 This is a repunctuation and reinterpretation (as in the synoptic gospels and Septuagint) of the Hebrew text of Is 40:3 which reads, “A voice cries out: In the desert prepare the way of the Lord.”
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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