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Sirach 6:5-17 Revised Standard Version (RSV)

Friendship, False and True

A pleasant voice multiplies friends,
    and a gracious tongue multiplies courtesies.
Let those that are at peace with you be many,
    but let your advisers be one in a thousand.
When you gain a friend, gain him through testing,
    and do not trust him hastily.
For there is a friend who is such at his own convenience,
    but will not stand by you in your day of trouble.
And there is a friend who changes into an enemy,
    and will disclose a quarrel to your disgrace.
10 And there is a friend who is a table companion,
    but will not stand by you in your day of trouble.
11 In your prosperity he will make himself your equal,
    and be bold with your servants;
12 but if you are brought low he will turn against you,
    and will hide himself from your presence.
13 Keep yourself far from your enemies,
    and be on guard toward your friends.

14 A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter:
    he that has found one has found a treasure.
15 There is nothing so precious as a faithful friend,
    and no scales can measure his excellence.
16 A faithful friend is an elixir of life;
    and those who fear the Lord will find him.
17 Whoever fears the Lord directs his friendship aright,
    for as he is, so is his neighbor also.

Revised Standard Version (RSV)

Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 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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