Sir 271 Because of need, many have sinned. And whoever seeks to be enriched, averts his eye. 2 Like a post fixed in the middle of adjoining stones, so also will sin become wedged between selling and buying. 3 Sin will be crushed with the one who sins. 4 If you do not hold yourself steadfastly to the fear of the Lord, your house will be quickly overthrown. 5 Just as the dust remains when one shakes a sieve, so will the doubt of a man remain in his thoughts. 6 The furnace tests the potter’s vessels, and the trial of the tribulation tests just men. 7 As the pruning of a tree reveals its fruit, so does a word reveal the thoughts in the heart of a man. 8 You should not praise a man before he speaks; for such is the testing of men. 9 If you pursue justice, you will obtain it. And you will be clothed with justice, as with a long robe of honor. And you will live with justice. And justice will protect you continually. And on the day of reckoning, you will find a strong foundation. 10 Birds flock to their own kind. And truth will return to those who practice it. 11 The lion lies in wait for its prey continually. So also do sins lie in wait for those who work iniquity. 12 A holy man persists in wisdom like the sun. But a senseless man changes like the moon. 13 In the midst of the senseless, retain a word for the proper time. But be continually in the midst those who are thoughtful. 14 The discussions of sinners are hateful, and their laughter is a delight in sin. 15 The speech that swears many oaths will cause the hair of the head to stand upright; and its irreverence will cause the ears to be blocked. 16 The shedding of blood is in the quarrels of the arrogant; and their evil talk is grievous to hear. 17 Whoever discloses the secret of a friend breaks faith; and he will not find a friend for his soul. 18 Love your neighbor, and be united with him faithfully. 19 But if you disclose his secrets, you should not continue to follow after him. 20 For like a man who destroys his friend, so also is he who destroys the friendship of his neighbor. 21 And like someone releasing a bird from his hand, so have you abandoned your neighbor, and you will not obtain him again. 22 You should no longer seek him, for he is now far away; he has fled like a roe-deer from a snare. For his soul has been wounded. 23 You will no longer be able to bind his wound. For there may be a reconciliation from cursing. 24 But to disclose the secrets of a friend is the hopeless act of an unhappy soul. 25 One who winks with the eye fabricates iniquity, and no one will cast him aside. 26 In the sight of your eyes, he will sweeten his mouth, and he will admire your talk. But at the very end, he will pervert his mouth, and he will offer a scandal from your own words. 27 I have hated many things, but I have not done as he has done, and the Lord will hate him. 28 Whoever throws a stone straight up will find that it falls on his own head. And a deceitful wound will return to wound the deceitful. 29 And whoever digs a pit will fall into it. And whoever positions a stone against his neighbor will stumble over it. And whoever lays a trap for another will perish by it. 30 Whoever sets in motion a wicked plan will find that it rolls back over him, and he will not know from which direction it will arrive. 31 Mockery and derision are of the arrogant, and vengeance will lie in wait for them, like a lion. 32 Whoever enjoys the fall of the just will perish in a snare, and grief will consume them before they die. 33 Anger and fury are both abominable, and the sinful man will be held by them.
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