The Bible in Its Traditions

Sirach 29:1–7


He shows mercy who lends to his neighbor, for he keeps the commandments by strengthening him.

He that is merciful will lend unto his neighbour; and he that strengtheneth his hand keepeth the commandments.

Lend to your neighbor in his time of need, and receive it again from your neighbor in his time.

Lend to thy neighbour in time of his need, and pay thou thy neighbour again in due season.

Keep your word, and act faithfully with him, and then you will find whatever you need in every time.

Keep thy word, and deal faithfully with him, and thou shalt always find the thing that is necessary for thee.

Many have treated a loan like found money, and they offered trouble to those who helped them.

Many, when a thing was lent them, reckoned it to be found, and put them to trouble that helped them.

Until they receive, they kiss the hands of the giver, and they humble their voice in promises.

Till he hath received, he will kiss a man’s hand; and for his neighbour’s money he will speak submissly: but when he should repay, he will prolong the time, and return words of grief, and complain of the time.


But at the time of repayment, they will ask for more time, and they will speak annoying and complaining words, and they will make excuses for the time.


Then, if he is able to repay, he will turn away. He will pay barely one half, and he will consider it as if he had found it.

Sir29:6  If he prevail, he shall hardly receive the half, and he will count as if he had found it: if not, he hath deprived him of his money, and he hath gotten him an enemy without cause: he payeth him with cursings and railings; and for honour he will pay him disgrace.