The Bible in Its Traditions

Sirach 19:4–12


Whoever is quick to believe has a trivial heart and will be diminished. And whoever offends against his own soul will have even less.

He that is hasty to give credit is lightminded; and he that sinneth shall offend against his own soul.

Whoever rejoices in iniquity will be condemned. And whoever hates correction will have less in life. But whoever hates excessive talk extinguishes evil.

Whoso taketh pleasure in wickedness shall be condemned: but he that resisteth pleasures crowneth his life.

Whoever sins against his own soul will be punished. And whoever rejoices in malice will be condemned.

He that can rule his tongue shall live without strife; and he that hateth babbling shall have less evil.

You should not repeat a wicked and harsh word, and then you will not be diminished.

Rehearse not unto another that which is told unto thee, and thou shalt fare never the worse.

Do not reveal your mind to friend or foe. And if there is a sin within you, do not disclose it.

Whether it be to friend or foe, talk not of other men’s lives; and if thou canst without offence, reveal them not.

For he will listen to you and watch you, and while pretending to defend your sin, he will despise you, and so he will be whenever he is with you.

For he heard and observed thee, and when time cometh he will hate thee.

10  Have you heard a word against your neighbor? Let it die within you, trusting that it will not burst forth from you.

10  If thou hast heard a word, let it die with thee; and be bold, it will not burst thee.

11  Before the face of a word, a foolish man labors, like a woman groaning as she gives birth to a child.

11  A fool travaileth with a word, as a woman in labour of a child.

12  Like an arrow fixed in the flesh of the thigh, so is a word in the heart of a foolish man.

12  As an arrow that sticketh in a man’s thigh, so is a word within a fool’s belly.