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Josiah and Other Worthies

49 The memory of Josi′ah is like a blending of incense
    prepared by the art of the perfumer;
it is sweet as honey to every mouth,
    and like music at a banquet of wine.
He was led aright in converting the people,
    and took away the abominations of iniquity.
He set his heart upon the Lord;
    in the days of wicked men he strengthened godliness.

Except David and Hezeki′ah and Josi′ah
    they all sinned greatly,
for they forsook the law of the Most High;
    the kings of Judah came to an end;
for they gave their power to others,
    and their glory to a foreign nation,
who set fire to the chosen city of the sanctuary,
    and made her streets desolate,
    according to the word[a] of Jeremiah.
For they had afflicted him;
    yet he had been consecrated in the womb as prophet,
to pluck up and afflict and destroy,
    and likewise to build and to plant.

It was Ezekiel who saw the vision of glory
    which God[b] showed him above the chariot of the cherubim.
For God[c] remembered his enemies with storm,
    and did good to those who directed their ways aright.[d]

10 May the bones of the twelve prophets
    revive from where they lie,
for they comforted the people of Jacob
    and delivered them with confident hope.

11 How shall we magnify Zerub′babel?
    He was like a signet on the right hand,
12     and so was Jeshua the son of Jo′zadak;
in their days they built the house
    and raised a temple[e] holy to the Lord,
    prepared for everlasting glory.
13 The memory of Nehemi′ah also is lasting;
    he raised for us the walls that had fallen,
and set up the gates and bars
    and rebuilt our ruined houses.


14 No one like Enoch has been created on earth,
    for he was taken up from the earth.
15 And no man like Joseph[f] has been born,
    and his bones are cared for.
16 Shem and Seth were honored among men,
    and Adam above every living being in the creation.


  1. Sirach 49:6 Gk by the hand
  2. Sirach 49:8 Gk he
  3. Sirach 49:9 Gk he
  4. Sirach 49:9 The text and meaning of this verse are uncertain
  5. Sirach 49:12 Other authorities read people
  6. Sirach 49:15 Heb Syr: Greek adds the leader of his brothers, the support of the people

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