1 O how beautiful is the chaste fruit of purity! For its remembrance is immortal, because it is observed both with God and with men.
2 When it is present, they imitate it, and they desire it when it has withdrawn itself, and it triumphs crowned forever, winning the reward of undefiled conflicts.
3 But the great number of the many different kinds of the impious will not be to their advantage, and spurious seedlings will not be given deep roots, nor will they establish any firm foundation.
4 And if they spring forth with branches for a time, yet, being set infirmly, they will be shaken by the wind, and, by the superabundance of the winds, they will be eradicated.
5 For the incomplete branches will be broken, and their fruits will be useless, and bitter to eat, and fit for nothing.
6 For all the sons born from iniquity are witnesses of wickedness against their parents at their interrogation.
7 But the just, if death seizes him beforehand, will be refreshed.
8 For old age is made venerable, neither by lasting long, nor by counting the number of years; yet understanding is the gray hair of wisdom for men,
9 and an immaculate life is a generation of sages.
10 Pleasing to God, having been made beloved, and living among sinners, he was transformed.
11 He was quickly taken away, for malice could not alter his understanding, nor could deceit beguile his soul.
12 For fascination with entertainment obscures good things, and the unfaithfulness of desire subverts the mind without malice.
13 Completed in a short time, he fulfilled many times.
14 Truly his soul was pleasing to God. Because of this, he hastened to bring him out of the midst of iniquities, but the people see this and do not understand, nor do they place such things in their hearts:
15 that the grace and mercy of God is with his holy ones, and he watches over his elect.
16 But the just dead will condemn the impious living, and youth hastily completed results in a long unjust life.
17 For they will see the end of the wise, and will neither understand, nor imagine, that he is of God, and that therefore the Lord has safeguarded him.
18 For they will see and despise him, but the Lord will ridicule them.
19 And after this, they will fall without honor and with contempt among the dead forever. Seeing that they are puffed up and speechless, he will shatter them and will shake them from the foundations all the way to the top, to their utter desolation, and they will grieve and their remembrance will perish.
20 They will hurry with fear at the understanding of their sins, and their iniquities will bear witness against them.
1 Then the just will stand with great steadfastness against those who have oppressed them and have taken away their labors.
2 Seeing this, they will be troubled with terrible fear, and they will be amazed at the suddenness of unexpected salvation.
3 Driven toward regret, and through the anguish of their groaning spirit, they will say within themselves: “These are the ones whom we held for some time in derision and in mocking reproach.
4 We foolish considered their life to be madness, and their end to be without honor.
5 How is it that they are counted among the sons of God, and their place is among the holy?
6 Therefore, we have strayed from the way of truth, and the light of justice has not shined on us, and the sun of understanding has not risen on us.
7 We exhausted ourselves in the way of iniquity and perdition, and have walked a difficult way, while ignoring the way of the Lord.
8 How has arrogance benefited us? Or what has exalting in riches brought us?
9 All those things have passed away like a shadow, and like a messenger traveling quickly by;
10 and like a ship passing over the waves of water, when it has gone by, its trace cannot be found, nor can the pathway of its keel in the waves;
11 or, like a bird flying through the air, there is no evidence of her journey to be found, but there is hardly a sound as the beating of her wings lifts up the air and, by the force of her journey, divides the air she has flown across, which was disturbed by her wings, and afterwards there is no sign of her journey to be found;
12 or, like an arrow shot at a selected mark, the air continues to be divided and to be brought together again, so that its passing is unknown.
13 And in like manner we, having been born, continuously cease to exist, and indeed, we depart with no sign of virtue to show, but we are consumed in our malice.”
14 Such things those who sinned said in hell.
15 For the hope of the impious is like feathers, which are blown away by the wind, and like a thin foam, which is dispersed by a storm, and like smoke, which is scattered by the wind, and like the memory of a guest who passes by one day.
16 But the just will live forever, and their reward is with the Lord, and the thought of them is with the Most High.
17 Therefore, they will receive a beautiful kingdom and a crown of splendor from the hand of the Lord, for with his right hand he will cover them, and with his holy arm he will defend them.
18 And his zeal will take up arms, and he will equip his servants for retribution on their enemies.
19 He will put on justice as a breastplate, and he will grasp sure judgment as a helmet.
20 He will select fairness as an invincible shield.
21 Yet he will sharpen his severe wrath into a spear, and he will fight with those of the world against the irrational.
22 Shafts of lightning will hurl forth accurately, and, as if from a well-curved bow of clouds, they will be expelled and will fly to the determined mark.
23 And hail will be cast like stones full of anger, and the water of the sea will rise up against them, and the rivers will charge forth harshly.
24 The spirit of virtue will stand firm against them and like a whirlwind will divide them, and he will lead all the world of iniquity into a wasteland, and malice will overthrow the seats of power.
1 Wisdom is better than power, and a prudent man is better than a powerful one.
2 Therefore, hear, O kings, and understand; learn, you judges of the ends of the earth.
3 Listen closely, you who hold the attention of the crowds, and who please yourselves by disturbing the nations.
4 For power has been given to you from the Lord and strength from the Most High, who will examine your works and scrutinize your thoughts.
5 For, when you were ministers of his kingdom, you did not judge correctly, nor keep the law of justice, nor walk according to the will of God.
6 Horribly and quickly he will appear to you, because he will make a severe judgment for those who are in charge.
7 For, to the little, great mercy is granted, but the powerful will endure powerful torment.
8 For the Lord will not exempt anyone’s character, nor will he stand in awe of anyone’s greatness, because he himself made the little and the great, and he is equally concerned for everyone.
9 But a powerful torture pursues the powerful.
10 Therefore, O kings, these, my words, are for you, so that you may learn wisdom and not perish.
11 For those who have justly preserved justice will be justified, and those who have learned these things will find what to answer.
12 Therefore, desire my words, love them, and you will have instruction.
13 Wisdom is pure and never fades away, and is easily seen by those who love her and found by those who seek her.
14 She anticipates those who desire her, so that she first reveals herself to them.
15 Whoever awakens early to seek her, will not labor, for he will find her sitting at his door.
16 Therefore, by thinking about her, understanding is perfected, and whoever remains watchful for her, will quickly be secure.
17 For she goes about seeking such as are worthy of her, and she reveals herself to them cheerfully in the ways, and meets them with all foresight.
18 For the very true beginning of her is the desire for instruction.
19 Therefore, the zeal for instruction is love, and love is the keeping of her laws, and the keeping of her laws is the perfection of incorruptibility,
20 while incorruptibility makes us near to God.
21 And so, the desire for wisdom leads to an everlasting kingdom.
22 If, therefore, your delight is in thrones and scepters, O kings of the people, love wisdom, so that you may reign forever;
23 love the light of wisdom, all you who lead the peoples.
24 But what wisdom is, and how she was made, I will report, and I will not hide the mysteries of God from you, but I will investigate her from the beginning of her birth, and I will place the knowledge of her in the light, and will not pass over the truth.
25 Neither will I hold to the path that dwindles away with envy, because such a man will not partake in wisdom.
26 For the proliferation of the wise is sanity for the world, and a wise king is the mainstay of the people.
27 Therefore, receive instruction by my words, and it will benefit you.
1 And Simon heard that Trypho had gathered together an immense army to come to the land of Judah and to lay waste to it.
2 Seeing that the people were fearful and trembling, he went up to Jerusalem, and he gathered together the people.
3 And exhorting them, he said: “You know what great battles I, and my brothers, and the house of my father, have fought for the laws and for the holy places, and the anguish that we have seen.
4 As a result these things, all my brothers have perished for the sake of Israel, and I have been left alone.
5 And now, it is not necessary for me to spare my life in any time of tribulation. For I am not better than my brothers.
6 And so, I will vindicate my people and the sanctuary, and likewise our children and wives. For all the Gentiles have gathered together to crush us, solely out of malice.”
7 And the spirit of the people was immediately enkindled, when they heard these words.
8 And they responded with a loud voice, saying: “You are our leader in place of Judas and of Jonathan, your brother.
9 Fight our battles, and we will do whatever you tell us to do.”
10 And so, gathering together all the men of war, he accelerated the completion of all the walls of Jerusalem, and he fortified it all around.
11 And he sent Jonathan, the son of Absalom, and with him a new army, into Joppa, and he cast out those who were in it, and he himself remained there.
12 And Trypho moved from Ptolemais, with a great army, to come into the land of Judah, and Jonathan was with him in custody.
13 But Simon took up a position at Addus, opposite the face of the plains.
14 And when Trypho realized that Simon rose up in the place of his brother, Jonathan, and that he would be joining in battle with him, he sent messengers to him,
15 saying: “We have detained your brother, Jonathan, because of the money that he owed to the king’s account, because of the matters for which he was responsible.
16 And now, send a hundred talents of silver, and two of his sons for hostages, so that when he is dismissed, he may not flee from us. And then we will release him.”
17 And Simon knew that he was speaking deceitfully to him. Yet he ordered the money and the boys to be given, lest he should bring upon himself a great hostility from the people of Israel, who might have said,
6 Behold we have heard of it in Ephrata: we have found it in the fields of the wood.
7 We will go into his tabernacle: We will adore in the place where his feet stood.
8 Arise, O Lord, into thy resting place: thou and the ark, which thou hast sanctified.
9 Let thy priests be clothed with justice: and let thy saints rejoice.
10 For thy servant David’s sake, turn not away the face of thy anointed.
11 The Lord hath sworn truth to David, and he will not make it void: of the fruit of thy womb I will set upon thy throne.
12 If thy children will keep thy covenant, and these my testimonies which I shall teach them: Their children also for evermore shall sit upon thy throne.
1 My brothers, not many of you should choose to become teachers, knowing that you shall receive a stricter judgment.
2 For we all offend in many ways. If anyone does not offend in word, he is a perfect man. And he is then able, as if with a bridle, to lead the whole body around.
3 For so we put bridles into the mouths of horses, in order to submit them to our will, and so we turn their whole body around.
4 Consider also the ships, which, though they are great and may be driven by strong winds, yet they are turned around with a small rudder, to be directed to wherever the strength of the pilot might will.
5 So also the tongue certainly is a small part, but it moves great things. Consider that a small fire can set ablaze a great forest.
6 And so the tongue is like a fire, comprising all iniquity. The tongue, stationed in the midst of our body, can defile the entire body and inflame the wheel of our nativity, setting a fire from Hell.
7 For the nature of all beasts and birds and serpents and others is ruled over, and has been ruled over, by human nature.
8 But no man is able to rule over the tongue, a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
9 By it we bless God the Father, and by it we speak evil of men, who have been made in the likeness of God.
10 From the same mouth proceeds blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so!
11 Does a fountain emit, out of the same opening, both sweet and bitter water?
12 My brothers, can the fig tree yield grapes? Or the vine, figs? Then neither is salt water able to produce fresh water.
13 Who is wise and well-taught among you? Let him show, by means of good conversation, his work in the meekness of wisdom.
14 But if you hold a bitter zeal, and if there is contention in your hearts, then do not boast and do not be liars against the truth.
15 For this is not wisdom, descending from above, but rather it is earthly, beastly, and diabolical.
16 For wherever envy and contention is, there too is inconstancy and every depraved work.
17 But within the wisdom that is from above, certainly, chastity is first, and next peacefulness, meekness, openness, consenting to what is good, a plenitude of mercy and good fruits, not judging, without falseness.
18 And so the fruit of justice is sown in peace by those who make peace.