Sir 50

1Simon, the high priest, son of Onias: in his life, he propped up the house, and in his days, he strengthened the temple. 2Even the height of the temple was established by him: the double building and the high walls of the temple. 3In his days, waters flowed out from the wells, and these were full beyond measure, like the sea. 4He cared for his nation, and he freed it from perdition. 5He prevailed, so as to enlarge the city. And he obtained glory by his behavior among the people. And he enlarged the entrance of the house and of the atrium. 6He shined in his days like the morning star through the midst of a cloud, and like the full moon. 7And he shined forth in the temple of God in this manner: like the sun when it shines brightly, 8and like a rainbow shining amid clouds of glory, and like flowering roses in the days of spring, and like lilies along the water’s edge, and like sweet smelling frankincense in the days of summer, 9like a fire shining brightly, and like frankincense burning within a fire, 10like a vessel of solid gold, adorned with every precious stone, 11like an olive tree producing buds, and like a cypress tree lifting itself on high, when he received the robe of glory and was vested with the consummation of virtue. 12He gave glory to the vestment of sanctity, when he ascended to the holy altar. 13Then, when he received the portions from the hands of the priests, he himself stood next to the altar. And around him was the crown of his brethren, like a cedar planted on a mountain of Lebanon. 14And they stood around him like palm branches, and all were sons of Aaron in their glory. 15Then the oblation of the Lord was in their hands, in the sight of the entire synagogue of Israel. And completing his service at the altar, so as to magnify the offering to the Most High King, 16he extended his hand to make a libation, and he offered from the blood of the grape. 17At the base of the altar, he poured out a divine fragrance to the Most High Prince. 18Then the sons of Aaron shouted; they sounded finely-made trumpets, and they made a great noise, as a memorial in the sight of God. 19Then all the people at once hurried forward, and they fell to the ground on their faces, to adore the Lord their God, and to offer prayers to Almighty God Most High. 20And the singers of Psalms raised their voices, and a full sweet sound increased in the great house. 21And the people petitioned the Most High Lord in prayer, even until the honor of the Lord was completed, and they finished offering their gifts. 22Then, descending, he extended his hands over the entire congregation of the sons of Israel, to give glory to God from his lips, and to glory in his name. 23And he repeated his prayer, wanting to reveal the virtue of God. 24And now, pray to the God of all, who has accomplished great things over all the earth, who has increased our days from our mother’s womb, and who has acted toward us in accord with his mercy. 25May he give us joyfulness in heart, and may there be peace in our days, in Israel for unending days, 26so that Israel may trust the mercy of God to be with us, in order to free us in his days. 27Two nations my soul hates, and a third, which I hate, is not a nation: 28those who sit upon mount Seir, and the Philistines, and the foolish people who live at Shechem. 29Jesus, the son of Sirach, of Jerusalem, who renewed wisdom from his heart, wrote the doctrine of wisdom and discipline in this book. 30Blessed is he who lives by these good things. Whoever places these things in his heart will be ever wise. 31For if he does these things, he will prevail in all things. For the light of God is upon his footsteps.
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