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Jeremiah 9-10 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 9

The Corruption of the People

Oh, that I had in the wilderness
    a travelers’ lodging!
That I might leave my people
    and depart from them.
They are all adulterers,
    a band of traitors.
They ready their tongues like a drawn bow;
    with lying, and not with truth,
    they are powerful in the land.
They go from evil to evil,
    and me they do not know—oracle of the Lord.
Be on your guard, everyone against his neighbor;
    put no trust in any brother.
Every brother imitates Jacob, the supplanter,[a]
    every neighbor is guilty of slander.
Each one deceives the other,
    no one speaks the truth.
They have accustomed their tongues to lying,
    they are perverse and cannot repent.
Violence upon violence,
    deceit upon deceit:
They refuse to know me—
    oracle of the Lord.
Therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts:
I will refine them and test them;
    how else should I deal with the daughter of my people?
A murderous arrow is their tongue,
    their mouths utter deceit;
They speak peaceably with their neighbors,
    but in their hearts they lay an ambush!
Should I not punish them for these deeds—oracle of the Lord;
    on a nation such as this should I not take vengeance?

Dirge over the Ravaged Land

Over the mountains I shall break out in cries of lamentation,
    over the pastures in the wilderness, in a dirge:
They are scorched, and no one crosses them,
    no sound of lowing cattle;
Birds of the air as well as beasts,
    all have fled and are gone.
10 I will turn Jerusalem into a heap of ruins,
    a haunt of jackals;
The cities of Judah I will make a waste,
    where no one dwells.

11 Who is wise enough to understand this? To whom has the mouth of the Lord spoken? Let him declare it!

Why is the land ravaged,
    scorched like a wilderness no one crosses?

12 The Lord said: Because they have abandoned my law, which I set before them, and did not listen to me or follow it, 13 but followed instead their stubborn hearts and the Baals, as their ancestors had taught them, 14 therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: See now, I will give this people wormwood to eat and poisoned water to drink. 15 I will scatter them among nations whom neither they nor their ancestors have known; I will send the sword to pursue them until I have completely destroyed them.

16     Thus says the Lord of hosts:
Inquire, and call the wailing women to come;
    summon the most skilled of them.
17 Let them come quickly
    and raise for us a dirge,
That our eyes may run with tears,
    our pupils flow with water.
18 The sound of the dirge is heard from Zion:
    We are ruined and greatly ashamed;
We have left the land,
    given up our dwellings!
19 Hear, you women, the word of the Lord,
    let your ears receive the word of his mouth.
Teach your daughters a dirge,
    and each other a lament:
20 Death has come up through our windows,
    has entered our citadels,
To cut down children in the street,
    young people in the squares.
21 Corpses shall fall
    like dung in the open field,
Like sheaves behind the harvester,
    with no one to gather them.

True Glory

22     Thus says the Lord:
Let not the wise boast of his wisdom,
    nor the strong boast of his strength,
    nor the rich man boast of his riches;
23 But rather, let those who boast, boast of this,
    that in their prudence they know me,
Know that I, the Lord, act with fidelity,
    justice, and integrity on earth.
How I take delight in these—oracle of the Lord.

False Circumcision. 24 See, days are coming—oracle of the Lord—when I will demand an account of all those circumcised in the foreskin: 25 Egypt and Judah, Edom and the Ammonites, Moab, and those who live in the wilderness and shave their temples.[b] For all the nations are uncircumcised, even the whole house of Israel is uncircumcised at heart.

Chapter 10

The Folly of Idolatry. Hear the word the Lord speaks to you, house of Israel. Thus says the Lord:

Do not learn the ways of the nations,
    and have no fear of the signs in the heavens,[c]
    even though the nations fear them.
For the carvings of the nations are nonentities,
    wood cut from the forest,
Fashioned by artisans with the adze,
    adorned with silver and gold.
With nails and hammers they are fastened,
    so they do not fall.
Like a scarecrow in a cucumber field are they,
    they cannot speak;
They must be carried about,
    for they cannot walk.
Do not fear them, they can do no harm,
    neither can they do good.
No one is like you, Lord,
    you are great,
    great and mighty is your name.
Who would not fear you,
    King of the nations,
    for it is your due!
Among all the wisest of the nations,
    and in all their domains,
    there is none like you.
One and all they are stupid and senseless,
    the instruction from nonentities—only wood!
Silver plates brought from Tarshish,
    and gold from Ophir,
The work of the artisan
    and the handiwork of the smelter,
Clothed with violet and purple—
    all of them the work of skilled workers.
10 The Lord is truly God,
    he is the living God, the eternal King,
Before whose anger the earth quakes,
    whose wrath the nations cannot endure.

11 Thus shall you say of them: The gods that did not make heaven and earth—let these perish from earth and from beneath heaven![d]

12 The one who made the earth by his power,
    established the world by his wisdom,
    and by his skill stretched out the heavens.
13 When he thunders, the waters in the heavens roar,
    and he brings up clouds from the end of the earth,
Makes lightning flash in the rain,
    and brings forth the wind from his storehouses.
14 Everyone is too stupid to know;
    every artisan is put to shame by his idol:
He has molded a fraud,
    without breath of life.
15 They are nothing, objects of ridicule;
    they will perish in their time of punishment.
16 Jacob’s portion is nothing like them:
    for he is the maker of everything!
Israel is his very own tribe,
    Lord of hosts is his name.

Abandonment of Judah

17 Gather up your bundle from the land,
    City living under siege!
18     For thus says the Lord:
Now, at this time
    I will sling away the inhabitants of the land;
I will hem them in,
    that they may be taken.
19 Woe is me! I am undone,
    my wound is beyond healing.
Yet I had thought:
    if I make light of my sickness, I can bear it.
20 My tent is ruined,
    all its cords are severed.
My children have left me, they are no more:
    no one to pitch my tent,
    no one to raise its curtains.
21 How stupid are the shepherds!
    The Lord they have not sought;
For this reason they have failed,
    and all their flocks scattered.
22 Listen! a rumor! here it comes,
    a great commotion from the land of the north:
To make the cities of Judah a desolation,
    the haunt of jackals.

Prayer of Jeremiah

23 I know, Lord,
    that no one chooses their way,
Nor determines their course
    nor directs their own step.
24 Correct me, Lord, but with equity,
    not in anger, lest you diminish me.
25 Pour out your wrath on the nations that do not know you,
    on the tribes that do not call your name;
For they have utterly devoured Jacob,
    and laid waste his home.

Footnotes:

  1. 9:3 Jacob, the supplanter: in Hebrew, a play on words. In the popular etymology given in Gn 25:26, the name Jacob means “he supplants,” for he deprived his brother Esau of his birthright (cf. Gn 25:33).
  2. 9:25 Shave their temples: some Arabian tribes practiced this custom. None of the nations who practice circumcision understand the meaning of their action, not even Israel; no one conforms to life under the covenant.
  3. 10:2 Signs in the heavens: phenomena in the sky, such as eclipses or comets, used to predict disasters.
  4. 10:11 This verse is in Aramaic.
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 11:1-17 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 11

The wisdom of the poor lifts their head high
    and sets them among princes.
Do not praise anyone for good looks;
    or despise anyone because of appearance.

The bee is least among winged creatures,
    but it reaps the choicest of harvests.
Do not mock the one who wears only a loin-cloth,
    or scoff at a person’s bitter day.
For strange are the deeds of the Lord,
    hidden from mortals his work.[a]
Many are the oppressed who rise to the throne;
    some that none would consider wear a crown.[b]
Many are the exalted who fall into utter disgrace,
    many the honored who are given into the power of the few.

Moderation and Patience[c]

Before investigating, do not find fault;
    examine first, then criticize.
Before listening, do not say a word,
    interrupt no one in the midst of speaking.
Do not dispute about what is not your concern;
    in the quarrels of the arrogant do not take part.

10 My son, why increase your anxiety,
    since whoever is greedy for wealth will not be blameless?
Even if you chase after it, you will never overtake it;
    and by fleeing you will not escape.
11 One may work and struggle and drive,
    and fall short all the same.
12 Others go their way broken-down drifters,
    with little strength and great misery—
Yet the eye of the Lord looks favorably upon them,
    shaking them free of the stinking mire.
13 He lifts up their heads and exalts them
    to the amazement of the many.

14 [d]Good and evil, life and death,
    poverty and riches—all are from the Lord.[e]
17 The Lord’s gift remains with the devout;
    his favor brings lasting success.

Footnotes:

  1. 11:4 The implication is similar to Eccl 7:13; 8:17: the mysterious work of God.
  2. 11:5 Cf. 1 Sm 2:8; Ps 75:8; 105:17–22; Lk 1:52.
  3. 11:7–28 Discretion should regulate conduct toward others (vv. 7–9); as regards personal interests, one should avoid solicitude for the passing external benefits of life and property (vv. 10–14, 18–19, 21, 23–25) and cultivate the lasting inward gifts of wisdom, virtue (vv. 20, 22), and patience (vv. 25–28).
  4. 11:14 In mysterious ways God ultimately governs the lives of men and women.
  5. 11:14

    Other ancient texts read as vv. 15–16:

    15Wisdom and understanding and knowledge of the Law,

    love and virtuous paths, are from the Lord.

    16Error and darkness were formed with sinners from their birth,

    and evil grows old with those who exult in evil.

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.

Jude New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Address and Greeting. [a]Jude, a slave of Jesus Christ and brother of James, to those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept safe for Jesus Christ: may mercy, peace, and love be yours in abundance.

Occasion for Writing. Beloved, although I was making every effort to write to you about our common salvation,[b] I now feel a need to write to encourage you to contend for the faith that was once for all handed down to the holy ones. For there have been some intruders, who long ago were designated for this condemnation, godless persons, who pervert the grace of our God into licentiousness and who deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

The False Teachers. I wish to remind you, although you know all things, that [the] Lord who once saved a people from the land of Egypt later destroyed those who did not believe.[c] The angels too, who did not keep to their own domain but deserted their proper dwelling, he has kept in eternal chains, in gloom, for the judgment of the great day.[d] Likewise, Sodom, Gomorrah, and the surrounding towns, which, in the same manner as they, indulged in sexual promiscuity and practiced unnatural vice,[e] serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.

Similarly, these dreamers[f] nevertheless also defile the flesh, scorn lordship, and revile glorious beings. Yet the archangel Michael, when he argued with the devil in a dispute over the body of Moses, did not venture to pronounce a reviling judgment[g] upon him but said, “May the Lord rebuke you!” 10 But these people revile what they do not understand and are destroyed by what they know by nature like irrational animals. 11 Woe to them! They followed the way of Cain, abandoned themselves to Balaam’s error for the sake of gain, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.[h] 12 These are blemishes on your love feasts,[i] as they carouse fearlessly and look after themselves. They are waterless clouds blown about by winds, fruitless trees in late autumn, twice dead and uprooted. 13 They are like wild waves of the sea, foaming up their shameless deeds, wandering stars for whom the gloom of darkness has been reserved forever.

14 [j]Enoch, of the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied also about them when he said, “Behold, the Lord has come with his countless holy ones 15 to execute judgment on all and to convict everyone for all the godless deeds that they committed and for all the harsh words godless sinners have uttered against him.” 16 These people are complainers, disgruntled ones who live by their desires; their mouths utter bombast as they fawn over people to gain advantage.

Exhortations. 17 But you, beloved, remember the words spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, 18 for they told you, “In [the] last time there will be scoffers who will live according to their own godless desires.”[k] 19 These are the ones who cause divisions; they live on the natural plane, devoid of the Spirit. 20 But you, beloved, build yourselves up in your most holy faith; pray in the holy Spirit. 21 Keep yourselves in the love of God and wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. 22 On those who waver, have mercy;[l] 23 save others by snatching them out of the fire; on others have mercy with fear,[m] abhorring even the outer garment stained by the flesh.

Doxology.[n] 24 To the one who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you unblemished and exultant, in the presence of his glory, 25 to the only God, our savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord be glory, majesty, power, and authority from ages past, now, and for ages to come. Amen.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Jude…brother of James: for the identity of the author of this letter, see Introduction. To those who are called: the vocation to the Christian faith is God’s free gift to those whom he loves and whom he safely protects in Christ until the Lord’s second coming.
  2. 3–4 Our common salvation: the teachings of the Christian faith derived from the apostolic preaching and to be kept by the Christian community.
  3. 5 For this first example of divine punishment on those who had been saved but did not then keep faith, see Nm 14:28–29 and the note there. Some manuscripts have the word “once” (hapax as at Jude 3) after “you know”; some commentators have suggested that it means “knowing one thing” or “you know all things once for all.” Instead of “[the] Lord” manuscripts vary, having “Jesus,” “God,” or no subject stated.
  4. 6 This second example draws on Gn 6:1–4 as elaborated in the apocryphal Book of Enoch (cf. Jude 14): heavenly beings came to earth and had sexual intercourse with women. God punished them by casting them out of heaven into darkness and bondage.
  5. 7 Practiced unnatural vice: literally, “went after alien flesh.” This example derives from Gn 19:1–25, especially 4–11, when the townsmen of Sodom violated both hospitality and morality by demanding that Lot’s two visitors (really messengers of Yahweh) be handed over to them so that they could abuse them sexually. Unnatural vice: this refers to the desire for intimacies by human beings with angels (the reverse of the example in Jude 6). Sodom (whence “sodomy”) and Gomorrah became proverbial as object lessons for God’s punishment on sin (Is 1:9; Jer 50:40; Am 4:11; Mt 10:15; 2 Pt 2:6).
  6. 8 Dreamers: the writer returns to the false teachers of Jude 4, applying charges from the three examples in Jude 5, 6, 7. This may apply to claims they make for revelations they have received by night (to the author, hallucinations). Defile the flesh: this may mean bodily pollutions from the erotic dreams of sexual license (Jude 7). Lordship…glorious beings: these may reflect the Lord (Jude 5; Jesus, Jude 4) whom they spurn and the angels (Jude 6; cf. note on 2 Pt 2:10, here, as there, literally, “glories”).
  7. 9 The archangel Michael…judgment: a reference to an incident in the apocryphal Assumption of Moses. Dt 34:6 had said of Moses, literally in Greek, “they buried him” or “he (God?) buried him” (taken to mean “he was buried”). The later account tells how Michael, who was sent to bury him, was challenged by the devil’s interest in the body. Our author draws out the point that if an archangel refrained from reviling even the devil, how wrong it is for mere human beings to revile glorious beings (angels).
  8. 11 Cain…Balaam…Korah: examples of rebellious men and of the punishment their conduct incurred; cf. Gn 4:8–16; Nm 16:1–35; 31:16. See note on 2 Pt 2:15.
  9. 12 Blemishes on your love feasts: or “hidden rocks” or “submerged reefs” (cf. Jude 13). The opponents engaged in scandalous conduct in connection with community gatherings called love feasts (agape meals), which were associated with eucharistic celebrations at certain stages of early Christian practice; cf. 1 Cor 11:18–34 and the note on 2 Pt 2:13.
  10. 14–15 Cited from the apocryphal Book of Enoch 1:9.
  11. 18 This is the substance of much early Christian preaching rather than a direct quotation of any of the various New Testament passages on this theme (see Mk 13:22; Acts 20:30; 1 Tm 4:1–3; 2 Pt 3:3).
  12. 22 Have mercy: some manuscripts read “convince,” “confute,” or “reprove.” Others have “even though you waver” or “doubt” instead of who waver.
  13. 23 With fear: some manuscripts connect the phrase “with fear” with the imperative “save” or with the participle “snatching.” Other manuscripts omit the phrase “on others have mercy,” so that only two groups are envisioned. Rescue of those led astray and caution in the endeavor are both enjoined. Outer garment stained by the flesh: the imagery may come from Zec 3:3–5, just as that of snatching…out of the fire comes from Zec 3:2; the very garments of the godless are to be abhorred because of their contagion.
  14. 24–25 With this liturgical statement about the power of God to keep the faithful from stumbling, and praise to him through Jesus Christ, the letter reaches its conclusion by returning to the themes with which it began (Jude 1–2).
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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