Sir 341 The hopes of a senseless man are empty and false; and dreams extol the imprudent. 2 Like one who chases a shadow and pursues the wind, so also is one who pays attention to lying visions. 3 In the vision of dreams, one thing represents another, as when a mask is before the face of a man. 4 What can be cleansed by the unclean? And what truth can be spoken from a lie? 5 Erroneous divinations and false signs and the dreams of evildoers are emptiness. 6 For your heart suffers from imagination, like a woman suffering in childbirth. Unless it is a visitation sent from the Most High, you should not set your heart upon it. 7 For dreams have caused many to go astray, and those who have hoped in them have fallen away. 8 The word of the law will be fulfilled without a lie, and wisdom will be made plain in the mouths of the faithful. 9 He who has not been tested, what does he know? A man with much experience will consider many things. And whoever has learned much will explain with understanding. 10 He who has no experience knows little. And he who has done many things has made many mistakes. 11 He who has not been tested, what kind of things can he know? He who has been deceived will be more cunning. 12 I have seen much by wandering, and the customs of many things. 13 At times, I have even been in danger of death because of these things, but I was freed by the grace of God. 14 The spirit of those who fear God is sought, and they will be blessed by his providence. 15 For their hope is in him who saves them, and the eyes of God are on those who love him. 16 Those who fear the Lord will tremble at nothing, and they will not be terrified. For he is their hope. 17 The soul of him who fears the Lord is blessed. 18 To whom should he look, and who is his strength? 19 The eyes of the Lord are upon those who fear him. He is a powerful Protector, a Firmament of virtue, a Shelter from the heat, and a Covering from the midday sun, 20 a Guardian from offenses, and a Helper from falling, who exalts the soul and illuminates the eyes, and who gives health and life and blessing. 21 An immolation from iniquity is a stained oblation, and the derisions of the unjust are not well pleasing. 22 The Lord is only for those who persevere for him in the way of truth and justice. 23 The Most High does not approve of the gifts of the iniquitous. Neither does he have respect for the oblations of the unjust; neither will he forgive their sins because of the multitude of their sacrifices. 24 Whoever offers a sacrifice from the substance of the poor is like one who sacrifices the son in the sight of his father. 25 The bread of the indigent is the life of the poor. Whoever cheats them out of it is a man of blood. 26 Whoever takes away the bread of sweat is like one who kills his neighbor. 27 He who sheds blood, and he who cheats the hired hand out of his wages, are brothers. 28 When one builds and another destroys, what benefit do they have from their labor? 29 When one prays and another curses, whose voice will God heed? 30 He who washes himself after touching the dead, and then touches him again, what was the benefit of his washing? 31 Similarly, a man who fasts for his sins, and then does the same again, what was the benefit of his humbling himself? Who will heed his prayer?
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