The Bible in Its Traditions

Sirach 3:30–4:10


30  A wicked heart will be burdened with sorrows, and a sinner will add further sins.

Sir3:27  An obstinate heart shall be laden with sorrows; and the wicked man shall heap sin upon sin.

31  The synagogue of the arrogant will not be healed. For the stalk of sinfulness will take root in them, and it will not be understood.

Sir3:28  In the punishment of the proud there is no remedy; for the plant of wickedness hath taken root in him.

32  The heart of the wise is understood by wisdom, and a good ear will listen to wisdom with all its desire.

Sir3:29  The heart of the prudent will understand a parable; and an attentive ear is the desire of a wise man.


33  A wise and understanding heart will abstain from sins, and will have success in works of justice.


34  Water extinguishes a burning fire, and almsgiving withstands sins.

Sir3:30  Water will quench a flaming fire; and alms maketh an atonement for sins.

35  And God is the watchman for him who repays a kindness. He remembers him afterwards, and in the time of his fall, he will find a firm support.

Sir3:31  And he that requiteth good turns is mindful of that which may come hereafter; and when he falleth, he shall find a stay.

4:1  Son, you should not cheat the poor out of alms, nor should you avert your eyes from a poor man.

My son, defraud not the poor of his living, and make not the needy eyes to wait long.

4:2  You should not despise the hungry soul, and you should not aggravate a poor man in his need.

Make not an hungry soul sorrowful; neither provoke a man in his distress.

4:3  You should not afflict the heart of the needy, and you should not delay an offer to someone in anguish.

Add not more trouble to an heart that is vexed; and defer not to give to him that is in need.

4:4  You should not make requests of one who is greatly troubled, and you should not avert your face from the indigent.

Reject not the supplication of the afflicted; neither turn away thy face from a poor man.

4:5  You should not avert your eyes from the needy out of anger. And you should not abandon those who seek help from you, so that they speak curses behind your back.

Turn not away thine eye from the needy, and give him none occasion to curse thee

4:6  For the pleadings of him who speaks curses of you, in the bitterness of his soul, will be heeded. For the One who made him will heed him.

For if he curse thee in the bitterness of his soul, his prayer shall be heard of him that made him.

4:7  Make yourself a friend to the congregation of the poor, and humble your soul before an elder, and humble your head before the great.

Get thyself the love of the congregation, and bow thy head to a great man.

4:8  Turn your ear without sadness toward the poor, and repay your debt, and respond to him peacefully in meekness.

Let it not grieve thee to bow down thine ear to the poor, and give him a friendly answer with meekness.

4:9  Free him who suffers injury at the hand of the arrogant, and do not carry animosity in your soul.

Deliver him that suffereth wrong from the hand of the oppressor; and be not fainthearted when thou sittest in judgement.

4:10  In judging, be merciful to the orphan, like a father, and be merciful to their mother, like a husband.

10  Be as a father unto the fatherless, and instead of an husband unto their mother: so shalt thou be as the son of the most High, and he shall love thee more than thy mother doth.