4 1 My child, don't prevent the poor from making a living, or keep them waiting in their need.2 Never give a hungry person any cause for resentment or anger.3 Don't add to the troubles of someone who is already desperate. If he is in need, don't put off giving to him.4-5 Don't refuse to help a beggar who is in distress. Don't turn your back on a poor person or give him any reason to curse you.6 If he becomes so bitter that he does curse you, his Creator will hear his prayer.
7 Make yourself popular in the synagogue. Bow your head to men of authority.8 Listen to what the poor have to say, and answer them politely.9 Protect people from those who want to wrong them, and be firm in your judgments.10 Be like a father to orphans, and provide widows with the help their husbands can no longer give them. Then you will be like a child of the Most High, and he will love you more than your own mother does.
Wisdom as a Teacher
11 Wisdom takes care of those who look for her; she raises them to greatness.12 Loving her is loving life itself; rising early to look for her is pure joy.13 Anyone who obtains Wisdom will be greatly honored. Wherever he goes, the Lord will bless him.14 Wisdom's servants are the servants of the Holy One, and the Lord loves everyone who loves her.15 Those who obey her will give sound judgments;[a] those who pay attention to her have true security.16 Put your trust in Wisdom, and you will possess her and pass her on to your descendants.17 At first, Wisdom will lead you along difficult paths. She will make you so afraid that you will think you cannot go on. The discipline she demands will be tormenting, and she will put you to the test with her requirements until she trusts you[b] completely.18 Then she will come to you with no delay, reveal her secrets to you, and make you happy.19 But if you go astray, she will abandon you and let you go to your own ruin.
20 Take advantage of opportunities, but guard yourself against evil. Don't underrate yourself.21 Humility deserves honor and respect, but a low opinion of yourself leads to sin.22 Do not let others have their way at your expense; do not bring on your own ruin by giving up your rights.23 Never hesitate to speak out when the occasion[c] calls for it. Don't hide your wisdom.[d]24 Your wisdom and education can be known only by what you say.25 Do not, however, go against the truth, and remember that you do not know everything.26 Don't be ashamed to confess your sins; there's no point in trying to stop a river from flowing.27 Don't allow yourself to be dominated by someone who is stupid or show partiality to influential people.28 Stand up for what is right, even if it costs you your life; the Lord God will be fighting on your side.
29 Don't be quick to speak or lazy and negligent in your work.30 Don't act like a lion at home or be suspicious of your servants.31 Don't stick out your hand to get something if you're going to be tightfisted when the time comes to pay it back.
Sirach 4:15Hebrew give sound judgments; Greek judge nations.
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