Bible in a Year – December – 14 | Day – 348

December – 14 | Day – 348
Old Testament: Sirach – 20 | Second Maccabees – 6

1 How much better is it to reprove, than to become angry, so as not to hinder him who may confess in prayer.

2 The lust of an eunuch will deflower a young maiden;

3 similar is he who by violence gives an iniquitous judgment.

4 How good it is, when you are corrected, to show contrition! For in this way, you will escape deliberate sin.

5 There is one who, by remaining silent, is found to be wise. And there is another who is hateful and who provokes by speaking out.

6 There is one who, not having the understanding to speak, remains silent. And there is another who remains silent, knowing the proper time.

7 A wise man will remain silent until the proper time. But an unrestrained and imprudent person will not heed the times.

8 Whoever uses many words will wound his own soul. And whoever unjustly takes authority upon himself will be hated.

9 There is advancement in evil for an undisciplined man, and there is a plan which turns to his detriment.

10 There is a gift which is not helpful, and there is a gift, the repayment for which is double.

11 There is a loss for the sake of boasting, and there is one who will lift up his head from lowliness.

12 There is one who buys much for a small price, and who pays it back sevenfold.

13 Anyone wise in words makes himself loved. But the graces of the foolish will be poured away.

14 A gift from the unwise will not benefit you. For his gaze is divided, sevenfold.

15 He will give little, and reproach much. And the opening of his mouth is like a burning flame.

16 There is one who lends today and demands repayment tomorrow. A man such as this is hateful.

17 A foolish man will not have a friend, and there will be no thanks for his good deeds.

18 For those who eat his bread have a false tongue. How often and how many are those who will ridicule him!

19 For what he possesses, he does not distribute with correct understanding. And he acts similarly with what he does not possess.

20 The slip of a false tongue is like someone who falls upon pavement. Such a fall for the wicked will arrive quickly.

21 A disagreeable man is like a pointless fable; it will be continually in the mouth of the undisciplined.

22 A parable from the mouth of a fool will be rejected. For he does not speak it at the proper time.

23 There is one who is prevented from sinning by poverty, and in his rest, he will be vexed.

24 There is one who will lose his own soul because of pretense, and he will lose it by an example of imprudence. For by seeking the approval of another, he will destroy himself.

25 There is one who, for the sake of what other’s think, makes a promise to a friend, and so he gains him as an enemy for no reason.

26 A lie is a wicked disgrace to a man, and yet lies will be continually in the mouths of those without discipline.

27 A thief is better than a man who constantly lies. But both of them will inherit perdition.

28 The habits of lying men are without honor. And their shame is with them without ceasing.

29 A wise man will benefit himself by his own words, and a prudent man will please the powerful.

30 Whoever works his land will raise high a stockpile of grain. And whoever works justice will himself be raised high. Yet truly, whoever pleases the powerful will escape unfair treatment.

31 Presents and gifts blind the eyes of judges, and silence their mouths, turning them aside from their task of correction.

32 Wisdom hidden, and treasure unseen: of what use is either of these?

33 He who hides his foolishness is better than a man who conceals his wisdom.

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1 But not much time later, the king sent a certain elder of Antioch, who compelled the Jews to transfer themselves from the laws of God and of their fathers,

2 and also to contaminate the temple that was in Jerusalem, and to name it ‘Jupiter of Olympus,’ and in Garizim, ‘Jupiter of Hospitality,’ exactly like those who inhabited the place.

3 Yet the worst and most grievous thing of all was the onrush of evils.

4 For the temple was full of the luxuries and carousings of the Gentiles, and of consorting with promiscuous women. And the women hurried themselves unreservedly into the sacred buildings, bringing in things that were not lawful.

5 And even the altar was filled with illicit things, which were prohibited by the laws.

6 And also the sabbaths were not kept, and the solemn days of the fathers were not observed, neither did anyone simply confess himself to be a Jew.

7 And so, they were led by bitter necessity, on the birthday of the king, to the sacrifices. And, when the holy things of Liber were celebrated, they were forced to go around crowned with the ivy of Liber.

8 Then a decree went out to the neighboring cities of the Gentiles, suggested by the Ptolemeans, that they too should act in a similar manner against the Jews, to oblige them to sacrifice,

9 and that those who were not willing to conform to the institutions of the Gentiles should be executed. Therefore, there was misery to be seen.

10 For two women were denounced for having had their boys circumcised. These, with the infants suspended at their breasts, when they had publicly led them around the city, they cast down from the walls.

11 Truly, others, meeting together in nearby caves and celebrating the Sabbath day secretly, when they had been discovered by Philip, were burned with fire, because they showed reverence to the observances of religion, deciding to help themselves by their own hand.

12 So then, I beg those who will read this Book, let them not be repelled by these adverse events, but let them consider that these things happened, not for the destruction, but for the correction, of our people.

13 For it is also an indication of great benefits that sinners are not permitted to continue in their ways for a long time, but are promptly brought to punishment.

14 For, as it is with other nations, (whom the Lord patiently awaits, so that, when the day of Judgment will arrive, he may punish them according to the plentitude of their sins,)

15 not so does he also deal with us, as if to put off our sins until the end, so as to punish us for them eventually.

16 Because of this, he certainly would never take away his mercy from us. Yet truly, chastising his people in adversity, he does not abandon them.

17 But these few things have been spoken by us as a reminder to the reader. For now we have arrived at the narration.

18 And so, Eleazar, one of the chief scribes, a man advanced in years and of stately countenance, was compelled to open his mouth wide to consume the flesh of swine.

19 Yet he, embracing a most glorious death as greater than a detestable life, went forward voluntarily to the torments.

20 And so, thinking over the manner by which he ought to approach it, enduring patiently, he was determined not to permit, due to a love for life, any unlawful things.

21 Yet those who stood near, being moved by an iniquitous pity because of long friendship with the man, taking him aside privately, asked that flesh be brought which was lawful for him to eat, so that he could pretend to have eaten, just as the king had commanded, from the flesh of the sacrifice.

22 So then, by doing this, he might be freed from death. And it was because of their old friendship with the man that they performed this kindness for him.

23 But he began to consider the eminent dignity of his stage of life and old age, and the natural honor of gray hair, as well as his exemplary words and deeds from childhood. And he responded quickly, according also to the ordinances of the sacred law preserved by God, saying, that he would first be sent to the underworld.

24 For it is not worthy for those of our age, he said, “to deceive, so that many adolescents might think that Eleazar, at ninety years, had converted to the life of the foreigners.

25 And so, they, because of my pretense and for the sake of a brief time of a corruptible life, would be misled, and, through this stain and desecration, I would defile my last years.

26 But if, in the present time, I were rescued from the torments of men, I would then not escape the hand of the Almighty, neither in life, nor in death.

27 For this reason, by departing life with fortitude, I will show myself to be clearly worthy of my long life.

28 And so, I will bequeath an example of fortitude to youths, if, with a ready soul and constancy, I carry out an honest death, for the sake of the most serious and most holy laws.” And having said this, he was immediately dragged away to execution.

29 But those who led him, and who were more mild a little before, were turned to anger because of the words spoken by him, which they considered to have been brought forth by way of arrogance.

30 But when he was ready to perish by the scourges, he groaned, and he said: “O Lord, who holds all holy knowledge, you clearly understand that, although I could be freed from death, I suffer grievous pains in body. Truly, according to the soul, I willingly endure these things, because of your fear.”

31 And the way in which this man passed from this life, bequeathed, not only to youths, but also to the entire people, the memory of his death as an example of virtue and fortitude.

Psalms: Psalms – 141

1 I have cried to the, O Lord, hear me: hearken to my voice, when I cry to thee.

2 Let my prayer be directed as incense in thy sight; the lifting up of my hands, as evening sacrifice.

3 Set a watch, O Lord, before my mouth: and a door round about my lips.

4 Incline not my heart to evil words; to make excuses in sins. With men that work iniquity: and I will not communicate with the choicest of them.

5 The just shall correct me in mercy, and shall reprove me: but let not the oil of the sinner fatten my head. For my prayer also shall still be against the things with which they are well pleased:

6 Their judges falling upon the rock have been swallowed up. They shall hear my words, for they have prevailed:

7 As when the thickness of the earth is broken up upon the ground: Our bones are scattered by the side of hell.

8 But o to thee, O Lord, Lord, are my eyes: in thee have I put my trust, take not away my soul.

9 Keep me from the snare, which they have laid for me, and from the stumblingblocks of them that work iniquity.

10 The wicked shall fall in his net: I am alone until I pass.

New Testament: Revelations – 2:1-13

1 And to the Angel of the Church of Ephesus write: Thus says the One who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks in the midst of the seven golden lampstands:

2 I know your works, and your hardship and patient endurance, and that you cannot stand those who are evil. And so, you have tested those who declare themselves to be Apostles and are not, and you have found them to be liars.

3 And you have patient endurance for the sake of my name, and you have not fallen away.

4 But I have this against you: that you have relinquished your first charity.

5 And so, call to mind the place from which you have fallen, and do penance, and do the first works. Otherwise, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.

6 But this you have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

7 Whoever has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the Churches. To him who prevails, I will give to eat from the Tree of Life, which is in the Paradise of my God.

8 And to the Angel of the Church of Smyrna write: Thus says the First and the Last, he who was dead and now lives:

9 I know your tribulation and your poverty, but you are rich, and that you are blasphemed by those who declare themselves to be Jews and are not, but who are a synagogue of Satan.

10 You should fear nothing amid those things which you will suffer. Behold, the devil will cast some of you into prison, so that you may be tested. And you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful even unto death, and I will give to you the crown of life.

11 Whoever has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the Churches. Whoever will prevail, he shall not be harmed by the second death.

12 And to the Angel of the Church of Pergamus write: Thus says he who holds the sharp two-edged spear:

13 I know where you dwell, where the seat of Satan is, and that you hold to my name and have not denied my faith, even in those days when Antipas was my faithful witness, who was slain among you, where Satan dwells.

Simplest Bible in a Year plan compiled using the “Catholic Public Domain Version Bible“. This is not the Readings at the Mass. For the Mass Readings, check the Mass Readings taken from the New Jerusalem Bible or the Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible.
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