Sirach - Chapter 34

[Sirach 34]
{34:1} The hopes of a senseless man are empty and false; and dreams extol the imprudent.
{34:2} Like one who chases a shadow and pursues the wind, so also is one who pays attention to lying visions.
{34:3} In the vision of dreams, one thing represents another, as when a mask is before the face of a man.
{34:4} What can be cleansed by the unclean? And what truth can be spoken from a lie?
{34:5} Erroneous divinations and false signs and the dreams of evildoers are emptiness.
{34:6} For your heart suffers from imagination, like a woman suffering in childbirth. Unless it is a visitation sent from the Most High, you should not set your heart upon it.
{34:7} For dreams have caused many to go astray, and those who have hoped in them have fallen away.
{34:8} The word of the law will be fulfilled without a lie, and wisdom will be made plain in the mouths of the faithful.
{34:9} He who has not been tested, what does he know? A man with much experience will consider many things. And whoever has learned much will explain with understanding.
{34:10} He who has no experience knows little. And he who has done many things has made many mistakes.
{34:11} He who has not been tested, what kind of things can he know? He who has been deceived will be more cunning.
{34:12} I have seen much by wandering, and the customs of many things.
{34:13} At times, I have even been in danger of death because of these things, but I was freed by the grace of God.
{34:14} The spirit of those who fear God is sought, and they will be blessed by his providence.
{34:15} For their hope is in him who saves them, and the eyes of God are on those who love him.
{34:16} Those who fear the Lord will tremble at nothing, and they will not be terrified. For he is their hope.
{34:17} The soul of him who fears the Lord is blessed.
{34:18} To whom should he look, and who is his strength?
{34:19} The eyes of the Lord are upon those who fear him. He is a powerful Protector, a Firmament of virtue, a Shelter from the heat, and a Covering from the midday sun,
{34:20} a Guardian from offenses, and a Helper from falling, who exalts the soul and illuminates the eyes, and who gives health and life and blessing.
{34:21} An immolation from iniquity is a stained oblation, and the derisions of the unjust are not well pleasing.
{34:22} The Lord is only for those who persevere for him in the way of truth and justice.
{34:23} The Most High does not approve of the gifts of the iniquitous. Neither does he have respect for the oblations of the unjust; neither will he forgive their sins because of the multitude of their sacrifices.
{34:24} Whoever offers a sacrifice from the substance of the poor is like one who sacrifices the son in the sight of his father.
{34:25} The bread of the indigent is the life of the poor. Whoever cheats them out of it is a man of blood.
{34:26} Whoever takes away the bread of sweat is like one who kills his neighbor.
{34:27} He who sheds blood, and he who cheats the hired hand out of his wages, are brothers.
{34:28} When one builds and another destroys, what benefit do they have from their labor?
{34:29} When one prays and another curses, whose voice will God heed?
{34:30} He who washes himself after touching the dead, and then touches him again, what was the benefit of his washing?
{34:31} Similarly, a man who fasts for his sins, and then does the same again, what was the benefit of his humbling himself? Who will heed his prayer?

 

In 34:1-8 Sirach warns about senselessness and dreams. What does he say?

In 34:9-31 Sirach speaks of experience and being tested. Where does he suggest one gets experience and what guidance does he offer?

 

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