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Sirach 14New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised (NRSVA)

14 Happy are those who do not blunder with their lips,
    and need not suffer remorse for sin.
Happy are those whose hearts do not condemn them,
    and who have not given up their hope.

Responsible Use of Wealth

Riches are inappropriate for a small-minded person;
    and of what use is wealth to a miser?
What he denies himself he collects for others;
    and others will live in luxury on his goods.
If one is mean to himself, to whom will he be generous?
    He will not enjoy his own riches.
No one is worse than one who is grudging to himself;
    this is the punishment for his meanness.
If ever he does good, it is by mistake;
    and in the end he reveals his meanness.
The miser is an evil person;
    he turns away and disregards people.
The eye of the greedy person is not satisfied with his share;
    greedy injustice withers the soul.
10 A miser begrudges bread,
    and it is lacking at his table.

11 My child, treat yourself well, according to your means,
    and present worthy offerings to the Lord.
12 Remember that death does not tarry,
    and the decree[a] of Hades has not been shown to you.
13 Do good to friends before you die,
    and reach out and give to them as much as you can.
14 Do not deprive yourself of a day’s enjoyment;
    do not let your share of desired good pass by you.
15 Will you not leave the fruit of your labours to another,
    and what you acquired by toil to be divided by lot?
16 Give, and take, and indulge yourself,
    because in Hades one cannot look for luxury.
17 All living beings become old like a garment,
    for the decree[b] from of old is, ‘You must die!’
18 Like abundant leaves on a spreading tree
    that sheds some and puts forth others,
so are the generations of flesh and blood:
    one dies and another is born.
19 Every work decays and ceases to exist,
    and the one who made it will pass away with it.

The Happiness of Seeking Wisdom

20 Happy is the person who meditates on[c] wisdom
    and reasons intelligently,
21 who[d] reflects in his heart on her ways
    and ponders her secrets,
22 pursuing her like a hunter,
    and lying in wait on her paths;
23 who peers through her windows
    and listens at her doors;
24 who camps near her house
    and fastens his tent-peg to her walls;
25 who pitches his tent near her,
    and so occupies an excellent lodging-place;
26 who places his children under her shelter,
    and lodges under her boughs;
27 who is sheltered by her from the heat,
    and dwells in the midst of her glory.


  1. Sirach 14:12 Heb Syr: Gk covenant
  2. Sirach 14:17 Heb: Gk covenant
  3. Sirach 14:20 Other ancient authorities read dies in
  4. Sirach 14:21 The structure adopted in verses 21–27 follows the Heb
New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised (NRSVA)

New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicised Edition, copyright © 1989, 1995 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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