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Sirach 40

 
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1 ἀσχολία μεγάλη ἔκτισται παντὶ ἀνθρώπῳ καὶ ζυγὸς βαρὺς ἐπὶ υἱοὺς Αδαμ ἀ{F'} ἡμέρας ἐξόδου ἐκ γαστρὸς μητρὸς αὐτῶν ἕως ἡμέρας ἐπιστροφῆς εἰς μητέρα πάντων 2 τοὺς διαλογισμοὺς αὐτῶν καὶ φόβον καρδίας ἐπίνοια προσδοκίας ἡμέρα τελευτῆς 3 ἀπὸ καθημένου ἐπὶ θρόνου ἐνδόξου καὶ ἕως τεταπεινωμένου ἐν γῇ καὶ σποδῷ 4 ἀπὸ φοροῦντος ὑακίνθινον καὶ στέφανον καὶ ἕως περιβαλλομένου ὠμόλινον θυμὸς καὶ ζῆλος καὶ ταραχὴ καὶ σάλος καὶ φόβος θανάτου καὶ μηνίαμα καὶ ἔρις 5 καὶ ἐν καιρῷ ἀναπαύσεως ἐπὶ κοίτης ὕπνος νυκτὸς ἀλλοιοῖ γνῶσιν αὐτοῦ 6 ὀλίγον ὡς οὐδὲν ἐν ἀναπαύσει καὶ ἀ{P'} ἐκείνου ἐν ὕπνοις ὡς ἐν ἡμέρᾳ σκοπιᾶς 7 τεθορυβημένος ἐν ὁράσει καρδίας αὐτοῦ ὡς ἐκπεφευγὼς ἀπὸ προσώπου πολέμου ἐν καιρῷ χρείας αὐτοῦ ἐξηγέρθη καὶ ἀποθαυμάζων εἰς οὐδένα φόβον 8 μετὰ πάσης σαρκὸς ἀπὸ ἀνθρώπου ἕως κτήνους καὶ ἐπὶ ἁμαρτωλῶν ἑπταπλάσια 9 πρὸς ταῦτα θάνατος καὶ αἷμα καὶ ἔρις καὶ ῥομφαία ἐπαγωγαί λιμὸς καὶ σύντριμμα καὶ μάστιξ 10 ἐπὶ τοὺς ἀνόμους ἐκτίσθη ταῦτα πάντα καὶ δ{I'} αὐτοὺς ἐγένετο ὁ κατακλυσμός 1 Great is the anxiety all men are doomed to, heavy the yoke each son of Adam must bear, from the day when he leaves his mother’s womb to the day when he is buried in the earth, that is mother of all. 2 What solicitude is his, what fears catch at his heart; how quick his mind runs out to meet coming events! And the term of it all is death. 3 What matter, whether a man sit on a throne, or grovel in dust and ashes; 4 whether he goes clad in purple and wears a crown, or has but coarse linen to wear? Anger he shall know, and jealousy, and concern, and bewilderment, and the fear of death, and the grudge that rankles, and rivalry. 5 Rest he on his bed at night, sleep comes to fashion his thinking anew; 6 even there, the rest he wins is but little or none at all, and thereupon, in his dreams, he is anxious as sentry waiting to be relieved, 7 his are such whirling thoughts as fugitive has, just escaped from the battle. Then, at the moment of deliverance, comes waking; and he marvels to find his fears all vain. 8 This lot he shares with all living things; beast has it as well as man, but for the sinner it is multiplied sevenfold. 9 There is more besides, mortal sickness, bloodshed, quarrelling, the sword, oppression, famine, devastation and plague; 10 all such things are designed for the punishing of the wicked; was it not from wickedness the flood came? 1

Occupatio magna creata est omnibus hominibus,
et jugum grave super filios Adam,
a die exitus de ventre matris eorum
usque in diem sepulturæ in matrem omnium.
2
Cogitationes eorum, et timores cordis,
adinventio exspectationis, et dies finitionis,
3
a residente super sedem gloriosam,
usque ad humiliatum in terra et cinere:
4
ab eo qui utitur hyacintho et portat coronam,
usque ad eum qui operitur lino crudo:
furor, zelus, tumultus, fluctuatio, et timor mortis,
iracundia perseverans, et contentio:
5
et in tempore refectionis in cubili,
somnus noctis immutat scientiam ejus.
6
Modicum tamquam nihil in requie,
et ab eo in somnis, quasi in die respectus.
7
Conturbatus est in visu cordis sui,
tamquam qui evaserit in die belli:
in tempore salutis suæ exsurrexit,
et admirans ad nullum timorem:
8
cum omni carne, ab homine usque ad pecus,
et super peccatores septuplum.
9
Ad hæc mors, sanguis, contentio, et rhomphæa,
oppressiones, fames, et contritio, et flagella:
10
super iniquos creata sunt hæc omnia:
et propter illos factus est cataclysmus.
11 πάντα ὅσα ἀπὸ γῆς εἰς γῆν ἀναστρέφει καὶ ἀπὸ ὑδάτων εἰς θάλασσαν ἀνακάμπτει 12 πᾶν δῶρον καὶ ἀδικία ἐξαλειφθήσεται καὶ πίστις εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα στήσεται 13 χρήματα ἀδίκων ὡς ποταμὸς ξηρανθήσεται καὶ ὡς βροντὴ μεγάλη ἐν ὑετῷ ἐξηχήσει 14 ἐν τῷ ἀνοῖξαι αὐτὸν χεῖρας εὐφρανθήσεται οὕτως οἱ παραβαίνοντες εἰς συντέλειαν ἐκλείψουσιν 15 ἔκγονα ἀσεβῶν οὐ πληθυνεῖ κλάδους καὶ ῥίζαι ἀκάθαρτοι ἐ{P'} ἀκροτόμου πέτρας 16 ἄχι ἐπὶ παντὸς ὕδατος καὶ χείλους ποταμοῦ πρὸ παντὸς χόρτου ἐκτιλήσεται 17 χάρις ὡς παράδεισος ἐν εὐλογίαις καὶ ἐλεημοσύνη εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα διαμενεῖ 11 All that is of earth, to earth must needs return, and all waters find their way back to the sea; 12 what shall become of bribery and oppression? The memory of them shall vanish; faithfulness will endure for ever. 13 All the riches of the wrong-doer will disappear, like stream that runs dry, will die away, like roll of thunder in a storm-cloud; 14 open-handed is merry-hearted, the sinners it is that shall pine away at the last. 15 Never a branch will the posterity of the wicked put forth; dead roots they are that rattle on the wind-swept rock. 16 How green yonder rushes grow by the river’s bank! But they shall be plucked up before hay-harvest. 17 But kindliness, like the garden trees, lasts on, remembered in blessing; charity remains unforgotten. 11

Omnia quæ de terra sunt in terram convertentur,
et omnes aquæ in mare revertentur.
12
Omne munus et iniquitas delebitur,
et fides in sæculum stabit.
13
Substantiæ injustorum sicut fluvius siccabuntur,
et sicut tonitruum magnum in pluvia personabunt.
14
In aperiendo manus suas lætabitur:
sic prævaricatores in consummatione tabescent.
15
Nepotes impiorum non multiplicabunt ramos:
et radices immundæ super cacumen petræ sonant.
16
Super omnem aquam viriditas,
et ad oram fluminis ante omne fœnum evelletur.
17

Gratia sicut paradisus in benedictionibus,
et misericordia in sæculum permanet.
18 ζωὴ αὐτάρκους καὶ ἐργάτου γλυκανθήσεται καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα ὁ εὑρίσκων θησαυρόν 18 Sweet is his lot, that toils and is contented; here is hidden treasure for thy finding.[1] 18
Vita sibi sufficientis operarii condulcabitur,
et in ea invenies thesaurum.
19 τέκνα καὶ οἰκοδομὴ πόλεως στηρίζουσιν ὄνομα καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα γυνὴ ἄμωμος λογίζεται 20 οἶνος καὶ μουσικὰ εὐφραίνουσιν καρδίαν καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα ἀγάπησις σοφίας 21 αὐλὸς καὶ ψαλτήριον ἡδύνουσιν μέλη καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα γλῶσσα ἡδεῖα 22 χάριν καὶ κάλλος ἐπιθυμήσει ὀφθαλμὸς καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα χλόην σπόρου 23 φίλος καὶ ἑταῖρος εἰς καιρὸν ἀπαντῶντες καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα γυνὴ μετὰ ἀνδρός 24 ἀδελφοὶ καὶ βοήθεια εἰς καιρὸν θλίψεως καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα ἐλεημοσύνη ῥύσεται 25 χρυσίον καὶ ἀργύριον ἐπιστήσουσιν πόδα καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα βουλὴ εὐδοκιμεῖται 26 χρήματα καὶ ἰσχὺς ἀνυψώσουσιν καρδίαν καὶ ὑπὲρ ἀμφότερα φόβος κυρίου 19 Children born, and a city founded, will bring thee a great name; best of all, a woman without spot. 20 Wine and music make heart glad; best of all, the love of wisdom. 21 Flute and harp make sweet melody; best of all a kindly tongue. 22 Grace and beauty charm the eye; best of all, the green wheat. 23 Friend and friend, gossip and gossip, are well met; best of all, man and wife. 24 Kinsmen …[2] will help thee in hard times; best of all thy alms-deeds to deliver thee. 25 Gold and silver give thee sure vantage-ground; best of all, right counsel. 26 Riches and strength make the heart beat high; best of all, the fear of the Lord. 19
Filii et ædificatio civitatis confirmabit nomen:
et super hæc mulier immaculata computabitur.
20
Vinum et musica lætificant cor:
et super utraque dilectio sapientiæ.
21
Tibiæ et psalterium suavem faciunt melodiam:
et super utraque lingua suavis.
22
Gratiam et speciem desiderabit oculus tuus:
et super hæc virides sationes.
23
Amicus et sodalis in tempore convenientes,
et super utrosque mulier cum viro.
24
Fratres in adjutorium in tempore tribulationis:
et super eos misericordia liberabit.
25
Aurum et argentum est constitutio pedum:
et super utrumque consilium beneplacitum.
26
Facultates et virtutes exaltant cor,
et super hæc timor Domini.
27 οὐκ ἔστιν ἐν φόβῳ κυρίου ἐλάττωσις καὶ οὐκ ἔστιν ἐπιζητῆσαι ἐν αὐτῷ βοήθειαν 28 φόβος κυρίου ὡς παράδεισος εὐλογίας καὶ ὑπὲρ πᾶσαν δόξαν ἐκάλυψεν αὐτόν 27 Fear the Lord, lack thou shalt have none, help need none; 28 the fear of the Lord is a garden that yields blessing … and in splendour above all splendour they have clothed him.[3] 27
Non est in timore Domini minoratio:
et non est in eo inquirere adjutorium.
28
Timor Domini sicut paradisus benedictionis,
et super omnem gloriam operuerunt illum.
29 τέκνον ζωὴν ἐπαιτήσεως μὴ βιώσῃς κρεῖσσον ἀποθανεῖν ἢ ἐπαιτεῖν 30 ἀνὴρ βλέπων εἰς τράπεζαν ἀλλοτρίαν οὐκ ἔστιν αὐτοῦ ὁ βίος ἐν λογισμῷ ζωῆς ἀλισγήσει ψυχὴν αὐτοῦ ἐν ἐδέσμασιν ἀλλοτρίοις 31 ἀνὴρ δὲ ἐπιστήμων καὶ πεπαιδευμένος φυλάξεται 29 Long as thou livest, my son, never turn beggar; die is better than beg. 30 Look thou for thy meat to another’s table, I count thy life no life at all; what, owe thy very being to another man’s larder? 31 From such a chance, good teaching and good training shall keep thee safe. 29

Fili, in tempore vitæ tuæ ne indigeas:
melius est enim mori quam indigere.
30
Vir respiciens in mensam alienam,
non est vita ejus in cogitatione victus:
alit enim animam suam cibis alienis:
31
vir autem disciplinatus et eruditus custodiet se.
32 ἐν στόματι ἀναιδοῦς γλυκανθήσεται ἐπαίτησις καὶ ἐν κοιλίᾳ αὐτοῦ πῦρ καήσεται 32 Poverty, on a fool’s lips, will pass for a thing desirable; but trust me, he has a fire raging within. 32
In ore imprudentis condulcabitur inopia,
et in ventre ejus ignis ardebit.
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Copyright © 2013 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.