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Tobit 7-11 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

V. Marriage and Healing of Sarah

Chapter 7

At the House of Raguel. When they entered Ecbatana, Tobiah said, “Brother Azariah, bring me straight to the house of our kinsman Raguel.” So he did, and they came to the house of Raguel, whom they found seated by his courtyard gate. They greeted him first, and he answered, “Many greetings to you, brothers! Welcome! You have come in peace! Now enter in peace!” And he brought them into his house. He said to his wife Edna, “How this young man resembles Tobit, the son of my uncle!” So Edna asked them, saying, “Where are you from, brothers?” They answered, “We are descendants of Naphtali, now captives in Nineveh.” She said to them, “Do you know our kinsman Tobit?” They answered her, “Indeed, we do know him!” She asked, “Is he well?” They answered, “Yes, he is alive and well.” Then Tobiah said, “He is my father!” Raguel jumped up, kissed him, and broke into tears. Then, finding words, he said, “A blessing upon you, son! You are the son of a good and noble father. What a terrible misfortune that a man so righteous and charitable has been afflicted with blindness!” He embraced his kinsman Tobiah and continued to weep. His wife Edna also wept for Tobit; and their daughter Sarah also began to weep.

Marriage of Tobiah and Sarah. Afterward, Raguel slaughtered a ram from the flock and gave them a warm reception. When they had washed, bathed, and reclined to eat and drink, Tobiah said to Raphael, “Brother Azariah, ask Raguel to give me my kinswoman Sarah.” 10 Raguel overheard the words; so he said to the young man: “Eat and drink and be merry tonight, for no man has a greater right to marry my daughter Sarah than you, brother. Besides, not even I have the right to give her to anyone but you, because you are my closest relative. However, son, I must frankly tell you the truth. 11 I have given her in marriage to seven husbands who were kinsmen of ours, and all died on the very night they approached her. But now, son, eat and drink. The Lord will look after you both.” Tobiah answered, “I will neither eat nor drink anything here until you settle what concerns me.”

Raguel said to him: “I will do it. She is yours as decreed by the Book of Moses. It has been decided in heaven that she be given to you! Take your kinswoman; from now on you are her brother, and she is your sister.[a] She is given to you today and here ever after. May the Lord of heaven prosper you both tonight, son, and grant you mercy and peace.” 12 Then Raguel called his daughter Sarah, and she came to him. He took her by the hand and gave her to Tobiah with these words: “Take her according to the law. According to the decree written in the Book of Moses I give her to be your wife. Take her and bring her safely to your father. And may the God of heaven grant both of you a safe journey in peace!” 13 He then called her mother and told her to bring writing materials. He wrote out a copy of a marriage contract stating that he gave Sarah to Tobiah as his wife as decreed by the law of Moses. Her mother brought the material, and he drew up the contract, to which he affixed his seal.

14 Afterward they began to eat and drink. 15 Later Raguel called his wife Edna and said, “My sister, prepare the other bedroom and bring Sarah there.” 16 She went, made the bed in the room, as he had told her, and brought Sarah there. After she had cried over her, she wiped away her tears and said, 17 “Take courage, my daughter! May the Lord of heaven grant you joy in place of your grief! Courage, my daughter!” Then she left.

Chapter 8

Expulsion of the Demon. When they had finished eating and drinking, they wanted to retire. So they brought the young man out and led him to the bedroom. Tobiah, mindful of Raphael’s instructions, took the fish’s liver and heart from the bag where he had them, and put them on the embers intended for incense.[b] The odor of the fish repulsed the demon, and it fled to the upper regions of Egypt;[c] Raphael went in pursuit of it and there bound it hand and foot. Then Raphael returned immediately.

When Sarah’s parents left the bedroom and closed the door behind them, Tobiah rose from bed and said to his wife, “My sister, come, let us pray and beg our Lord to grant us mercy and protection.” She got up, and they started to pray and beg that they might be protected. He began with these words:

“Blessed are you, O God of our ancestors;
    blessed be your name forever and ever!
Let the heavens and all your creation bless you forever.
You made Adam, and you made his wife Eve
    to be his helper and support;
    and from these two the human race has come.
You said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone;
    let us make him a helper like himself.’
Now, not with lust,
    but with fidelity I take this kinswoman as my wife.
Send down your mercy on me and on her,
    and grant that we may grow old together.
Bless us with children.”

They said together, “Amen, amen!” Then they went to bed for the night.

But Raguel got up and summoned his servants. They went out with him and dug a grave, 10 for he said, “Perhaps Tobiah will die; then we would be a laughingstock and an object of mockery.” 11 When they had finished digging the grave, Raguel went back into the house and called his wife, 12 saying, “Send one of the maids in to see whether he is alive. If he has died, let us bury him without anyone knowing about it.” 13 They sent the maid, lit a lamp, and opened the bedroom door; she went in and found them sleeping together. 14 The maid came out and told them that Tobiah was alive, and that nothing was wrong. 15 Then they praised the God of heaven in these words:

“Blessed are you, God, with every pure blessing!
    Let all your chosen ones bless you forever!
16 Blessed are you, for you have made me happy;
    what I feared did not happen.
Rather you have dealt with us
    according to your abundant mercy.
17 Blessed are you, for you have shown mercy
    toward two only children.
Grant them, Master, mercy and protection,
    and bring their lives to fulfillment
    with happiness and mercy.”

18 Then Raguel told his servants to fill in the grave before dawn.

Wedding Feast. 19 He asked his wife to bake many loaves of bread; he himself went out to the herd and brought two steers and four rams, which he ordered to be slaughtered. So they began to prepare the feast. 20 He summoned Tobiah and said to him, “For fourteen days[d] you shall not stir from here, but shall remain here eating and drinking with me; you shall bring joy to my daughter’s afflicted spirit. 21 Now take half of what I own here; go back in good health to your father. The other half will be yours when I and my wife die. Take courage, son! I am your father, and Edna is your mother; we belong to you and to your sister both now and forever. So take courage, son!”

Chapter 9

The Money Recovered. Then Tobiah called Raphael and said to him: “Brother Azariah, take along with you from here four servants and two camels and travel to Rages.[e] Go to Gabael’s house and give him this bond. Get the money and then bring him along with you to the wedding celebration. For you know that my father will be counting the days. If I should delay even by a single day, I would cause him intense grief. You have witnessed the oath that Raguel has sworn; I cannot violate his oath.” So Raphael, together with the four servants and two camels, traveled to Rages in Media, where they stayed at Gabael’s house. Raphael gave Gabael his bond and told him about Tobit’s son Tobiah, that he had married and was inviting him to the wedding celebration. Gabael got up and counted out for him the moneybags with their seals, and they packed them on the camels.

The following morning they both got an early start and traveled to the wedding celebration. When they entered Raguel’s house, they found Tobiah reclining at table. He jumped up and greeted Gabael, who wept and blessed him, exclaiming: “Good and noble child, son of a good and noble, righteous and charitable man, may the Lord bestow a heavenly blessing on you and on your wife, and on your wife’s father and mother. Blessed be God, because I have seen the very image of my cousin Tobit!”

VI. Tobiah’s Return Journey to Nineveh and the Healing of Tobit

Chapter 10

Anxiety of the Parents. Meanwhile, day by day, Tobit was keeping track of the time Tobiah would need to go and to return. When the number of days was reached and his son did not appear, he said, “Could it be that he has been detained there? Or perhaps Gabael has died, and there is no one to give him the money?” And he began to grieve. His wife Anna said, “My son has perished and is no longer among the living!” And she began to weep aloud and to wail over her son: “Alas, child, light of my eyes, that I have let you make this journey!” But Tobit kept telling her: “Be still, do not worry, my sister; he is safe! Probably they have to take care of some unexpected business there. The man who is traveling with him is trustworthy and one of our kindred. So do not grieve over him, my sister. He will be here soon.” But she retorted, “You be still, and do not try to deceive me! My son has perished!” She would rush out and keep watch every day at the road her son had taken. She ate nothing. After the sun had set, she would go back home to wail and cry the whole night through, getting no sleep at all.

Departure from Ecbatana. Now when the fourteen days of the wedding celebration, which Raguel had sworn to hold for his daughter, had come to an end, Tobiah went to him and said: “Send me off, now, since I know that my father and mother do not believe they will ever see me again. So I beg you, father, let me depart and go back to my own father. I have already told you how I left him.” Raguel said to Tobiah: “Stay, son, stay with me. I am sending messengers to your father Tobit, and they will give him news of you.” But Tobiah insisted, “No, I beg you to send me back to my father.”

10 Raguel then promptly handed over to Tobiah his wife Sarah, together with half of all his property: male and female slaves, oxen and sheep, donkeys and camels, clothing, money, and household goods. 11 He saw them safely off. Embracing Tobiah, he said to him: “Farewell, son. Have a safe journey. May the Lord of heaven grant prosperity to you and to your wife Sarah. And may I see children of yours before I die!” 12 Then he said to his daughter Sarah, “My daughter, honor your father-in-law and your mother-in-law, because from now on they are as much your parents as the ones who brought you into the world. Go in peace, daughter; let me hear a good report about you as long as I live.” Finally he said good-bye to them and let them go.

Edna also said to Tobiah: “My child and beloved kinsman, may the Lord bring you back safely, and may I live long enough to see children of you and of my daughter Sarah before I die. Before the Lord, I entrust my daughter to your care. Never cause her grief all the days of your life. Go in peace, son. From now on I am your mother, and Sarah is your sister. Together may we all prosper throughout the days of our lives.” She kissed them both and saw them safely off.

13 Tobiah left Raguel, full of happiness and joy, and he blessed the Lord of heaven and earth, the King of all, for making his journey so successful. Finally he blessed Raguel and his wife Edna, and added, “I have been commanded by the Lord to honor you all the days of your life!”

Chapter 11

Homeward Journey. As they drew near to Kaserin, which is opposite Nineveh, Raphael said: “You know how we left your father. Let us hurry on ahead of your wife to prepare the house while they are still on the way.” So both went on ahead together, and Raphael said to him, “Take the gall in your hand!” And the dog ran along behind them.

Meanwhile, Anna sat watching the road by which her son was to come. When she saw him coming, she called to his father, “Look, your son is coming, and the man who traveled with him!”

Raphael said to Tobiah before he came near to his father: “I know that his eyes will be opened. Apply the fish gall to his eyes, and the medicine will make the white scales shrink and peel off from his eyes; then your father will have sight again and will see the light of day.”

Sight Restored. Then Anna ran up to her son, embraced him, and said to him, “Now that I have seen you again, son, I am ready to die!” And she sobbed aloud. 10 Tobit got up and stumbled out through the courtyard gate to meet his son. Tobiah went up to him 11 with the fish gall in his hand and blew into his eyes. Holding him firmly, he said, “Courage, father.” Then he applied the medicine to his eyes, and it made them sting. 12 , 13 Tobiah used both hands to peel the white scales from the corners of his eyes. Tobit saw his son and threw his arms around him. 14 Weeping, he exclaimed, “I can see you, son, the light of my eyes!” Then he prayed,

“Blessed be God,
    blessed be his great name,
    and blessed be all his holy angels.
May his great name be with us,
    and blessed be all the angels throughout all the ages.
15 God it was who afflicted me,
    and God who has had mercy on me.
    Now I see my son Tobiah!”

Then Tobit went back in, rejoicing and praising God with full voice. Tobiah related to his father how his journey had been a success; that he had brought back the money; and that he had married Raguel’s daughter Sarah, who was about to arrive, for she was near the gate of Nineveh.

16 Rejoicing and blessing God, Tobit went out to the gate of Nineveh to meet his daughter-in-law. When the people of Nineveh saw him coming, walking along briskly, with no one leading him by the hand, they were amazed. 17 Before them all Tobit proclaimed how God had shown mercy to him and opened his eyes. When Tobit came up to Sarah, the wife of his son Tobiah, he blessed her and said: “Welcome, my daughter! Blessed be your God for bringing you to us, daughter! Blessed are your father and your mother. Blessed be my son Tobiah, and blessed be you, daughter! Welcome to your home with blessing and joy. Come in, daughter!” That day there was joy for all the Jews who lived in Nineveh. 18 Ahiqar and his nephew Nadin[f] were also on hand to rejoice with Tobit. Tobiah’s wedding feast was celebrated with joy for seven days, and many gifts were given to him.

Footnotes:

  1. 7:11 You are her brother, and she is your sister: the marriage formula is similar to a marriage contract from the fifth century B.C. found at Elephantine in Egypt: “She is my wife and I am her husband from this day forever.”
  2. 8:2–3 The manner of coping with demonic influences among the ancients seems strange to us. However, the fish here is a folktale element, suggesting the hero’s fight with a dragon, and not a recipe for exorcism. It is clear that the author places primary emphasis on the value of prayer to God (6:18; 8:4–8), on the role of the angel as God’s agent, and on the pious disposition of Tobiah.
  3. 8:3 The desert was considered the dwelling place of demons. Cf. Is 13:21; 34:14; Mt 4:1; 12:43.
  4. 8:20 For fourteen days: because of the happy, and unexpected, turn of events, Raguel doubles the time of the wedding feast. When Tobiah returns home, the usual seven-day feast is held (11:18). Cf. Jgs 14:12.
  5. 9:2 To Rages: see note on 5:6.
  6. 11:18 Nadin: see note on 14:10.
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.

Proverbs 29:14-27 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

14 If a king is honestly for the rights of the poor,
    his throne stands firm forever.
15 The rod of correction gives wisdom,
    but uncontrolled youths disgrace their mothers.
16 When the wicked increase, crime increases;
    but the just will behold their downfall.[a]
17 Discipline your children, and they will bring you comfort,
    and give delight to your soul.
18 Without a vision the people lose restraint;
    but happy is the one who follows instruction.[b]
19 Not by words alone can servants be trained;
    for they understand but do not respond.[c]
20 Do you see someone hasty in speech?
    There is more hope for a fool!
21 If servants are pampered from childhood
    they will turn out to be stubborn.
22 The ill-tempered stir up strife,
    and the hotheaded cause many sins.
23 Haughtiness brings humiliation,
    but the humble of spirit acquire honor.[d]
24 Partners of a thief hate themselves;[e]
    they hear the imprecation but do not testify.
25 Fear of others becomes a snare,
    but the one who trusts in the Lord is safe.
26 Many curry favor with a ruler,
    but it is from the Lord that one receives justice.
27 An abomination to the just, the evildoer;
    an abomination to the wicked, one whose way is straight.

Footnotes:

  1. 29:16 When the wicked grow numerous they sow the seeds of their own destruction, for there is a corresponding increase in offenses calling down divine retribution.
  2. 29:18 This much-cited proverb has been interpreted in several different ways. “Vision” and “instruction” mean authoritative guidance for the community. People are demoralized without credible leadership, but any individual heeding traditional instruction can still find happiness. As in 15:15 wisdom enables an individual to surmount days of trouble.
  3. 29:19 The give and take of reproving is not possible for servants or slaves. Ancient custom dictated silent acquiescence for them. There is no open and free dialogue, which is part of ancient discipline.
  4. 29:23 One’s prideful height brings one down and one’s lowly state brings glory.
  5. 29:24 Hate themselves: because they not only incur guilt as accomplices but, by their silence, bring down on themselves the curse invoked on the unknown guilty partner. Such a case is envisioned in Lv 5:1. After a theft, a public proclamation was made, enforced by a curse. No one in a town or city could avoid hearing it. The curse hung over the accomplice. By doing nothing, neither directly stealing nor confessing, accomplices put themselves in serious danger.
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.

Philippians 4 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

VI. Instructions for the Community[a]

Chapter 4

Live in Concord. Therefore, my brothers, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, in this way stand firm in the Lord, beloved.

I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche[b] to come to a mutual understanding in the Lord. Yes, and I ask you also, my true yokemate,[c] to help them, for they have struggled at my side in promoting the gospel, along with Clement and my other co-workers, whose names are in the book of life.

Joy and Peace. Rejoice[d] in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice! Your kindness[e] should be known to all. The Lord is near. Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.[f] Keep on doing what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me. Then the God of peace will be with you.[g]

VII. Gratitude for the Philippians’ Generosity[h]

10 I rejoice greatly in the Lord that now at last you revived your concern for me. You were, of course, concerned about me but lacked an opportunity. 11 Not that I say this because of need, for I have learned, in whatever situation I find myself, to be self-sufficient. 12 I know indeed how to live in humble circumstances; I know also how to live with abundance. In every circumstance and in all things I have learned the secret of being well fed and of going hungry, of living in abundance and of being in need. 13 I have the strength for everything through him who empowers me. 14 Still, it was kind of you to share in my distress.

15 You Philippians indeed know that at the beginning of the gospel,[i] when I left Macedonia, not a single church shared with me in an account of giving and receiving, except you alone. 16 For even when I was at Thessalonica you sent me something for my needs, not only once but more than once. 17 It is not that I am eager for the gift; rather, I am eager for the profit that accrues to your account. 18 I have received full payment and I abound. I am very well supplied because of what I received from you through Epaphroditus, “a fragrant aroma,” an acceptable sacrifice,[j] pleasing to God. 19 My God will fully supply whatever you need, in accord with his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. 20 To our God and Father, glory forever and ever. Amen.

VIII. Farewell[k]

21 Give my greetings to every holy one in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me send you their greetings; 22 all the holy ones send you their greetings, especially those of Caesar’s household.[l] 23 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

Footnotes:

  1. 4:1–9 This series of ethical admonitions rests especially on the view of Christ and his coming (cf. Phil 4:5) in Phil 3:20–21. Paul’s instructions touch on unity within the congregation, joy, prayer, and the Christian outlook on life.
  2. 4:2 Euodia…Syntyche: two otherwise unknown women in the Philippian congregation; on the advice to them, cf. Phil 2:2–4.
  3. 4:3 Yokemate: or “comrade,” although the Greek syzygos could also be a proper name. Clement: otherwise unknown, although later writers sought to identify him with Clement, bishop of Rome (Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History 3.15.1).
  4. 4:4 Rejoice: see note on Phil 3:1.
  5. 4:5 Kindness: considerateness, forbearance, fairness. The Lord is near: most likely a reference to Christ’s parousia (Phil 1:6, 10; 3:20–21; 1 Cor 16:22), although some sense an echo of Ps 119:151 and the perpetual presence of the Lord.
  6. 4:8 The language employs terms from Roman Stoic thought.
  7. 4:9 Cf. note on Phil 3:17.
  8. 4:10–20 Paul, more directly than anywhere else in the letter (cf. Phil 1:3–5), here thanks the Philippians for their gift of money sent through Epaphroditus (Phil 2:25). Paul’s own policy was to be self-sufficient as a missionary, supporting himself by his own labor (1 Thes 2:5–9; 1 Cor 9:15–18; cf. Acts 18:2–3). In spite of this reliance on self and on God to provide (Phil 4:11–13) Paul accepted gifts from the Philippians not only once but more than once (Phil 4:16) when he was in Thessalonica (Acts 17:1–9), as he does now, in prison (my distress, Phil 4:14). While commercial terms appear in the passage, like an account of giving and receiving (Phil 4:15) and received full payment (Phil 4:18), Paul is most concerned about the spiritual growth of the Philippians (Phil 4:10, 17, 19); he emphasizes that God will care for their needs, through Christ.
  9. 4:15 The beginning of the gospel: it was at Philippi that Paul first preached Christ in Europe, going on from there to Thessalonica and Beroea (Acts 16:9–17:14).
  10. 4:18 Aroma…sacrifice: Old Testament cultic language (cf. Gn 8:21; Ex 29:18, 25, 41; Lv 1:9, 13; Ez 20:41) applied to the Philippians’ gift; cf. Eph 5:2; 2 Cor 2:14–16.
  11. 4:21–23 On the usual greetings at the conclusion of a letter, see note on 1 Cor 16:19–24. Inclusion of greetings from all the holy ones in the place from which Paul writes would involve even the Christians of Phil 1:14–18 who had their differences with Paul.
  12. 4:22 Those of Caesar’s household: minor officials or even slaves and freedmen, found in Ephesus or Rome, among other places.
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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