Saturday, May 22, 2010

Sirach 9

*Behavior With Women*
1. Do not be jealous of the wife of your bosom
And so teach her an evil lesson about yourself.+

2. Do not give your soul to a woman
To let her trample on your strength

3. Do not meet with a woman who is a courtesan,
Lest you fall into her snares.+

4. Do not associate with a dancing-girl,
Lest you be caught in her schemes.

5. Do not gaze at a virgin,
Lest you stumble and pay damages for her.

6. Do not give your soul to prostitutes,
Lest you destroy your inheritance.

7. Do not look around in the streets of a city,
And do not wander about in its deserted sections.

8. Turn your eye away from a woman with a shapely figure,
And do not gaze at beauty belonging to another.
Many have been led astray by the beauty of a woman,
And erotic love is like a burning fire.

9. Never dine with another man's wife,
And do not share in parties with her over wine,
Lest your soul turn aside to her,
And you slip and with your spirit fall into destruction.

*Friends and Neighbors*
10. Do not forsake an old friend,
For a new one is not equal with him.
A new friend is like new wine;
Drink it with pleasure only after it ages.+

11. Do not envy the honor given a sinner,
For you do not know what his end will be.

12. Do not delight in the pleasure of the ungodly;
Remember, they will not be declared righteous even in Hades.

13. Keep far away from a man who has the power to kill,
And you will not be anxious about the fear of death.
But if you come near him, do not offend him,
Lest he take away your life.
Know that you are stepping in the midst of snares
And walking about the battlements of a city.

14. Evaluate your neighbors as best you can
And consult with those who are wise.

15. Let your reasoning be with those who are wise,
And let all your talk be about the law of the Most High.+

16. Let righteous men be your dinner companions,
And let your boasting be in the fear of the Lord.

*Wise Leaders*
17. A work will be praised for the skill of its craftsmen,
And a wise leader of people for the skill of his words.

18. A talkative man is regarded with fear in his city,
And a man who is reckless in his speech will be hated.

9:1 - A warning against marrying a woman and then becoming jealous of her. Instead, lover her and encourage her to use her gifts.

9:3-9 - Up-to-date ancient advice on a man's behavior toward women. A courtesan (v. 3) is a prostitute of noblemen. A wise man is not to gaze at a virgin (v. 5), that is, any young unmarried woman. To do so could tempt the couple to immoral relations, which is Jewish society carried a strong penalty (see Dt. 22:28-29). The beauty of a married woman belongs only to her husband (v. 8). It is especially important for a man to avoid dining and drinking alone with a married woman lest they fall into sin and destruction (v. 9).

9:10 - Loyalty to an old friend is a great virtue. A new friend cannot take his place.

9:15 - The strongest friendships are based on a relationship with the Most High God!


  1. Lots of great stuff, as always! :D It seems I say this every week.

    4. Do not associate with a dancing-girl,
    Lest you be caught in her schemes.

    I think Herod could have learned from Sirach and not had to chop John the Baptist's head!

    9:15 - The strongest friendships are based on a relationship with the Most High God!

    Very true!

    Thanks for sharing these! Loved 'em!

  2. Susanne,

    Yeah, those dancing girls. First it's jewelry and expensive dinners, and then they're demanding severed heads. So high maintenance! ;)


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