Sirach 19

1 A workman that is a drunkard shall not become rich: He that despiseth small things shall fall by little and little.

2 Wine and women will make men of understanding to fall away: And he that cleaveth to harlots will be the more reckless.

3 Moths and worms shall have him to heritage; And a reckless soul shall be taken away.

4 He that is hasty to trust is light-minded; And he that sinneth shall offend against his own soul.

5 He that maketh merry in his heart shall be condemned:

6 And he that hateth talk hath the less wickedness.

7 Never repeat what is told thee, And thou shalt fare never the worse.

8 Whether it be of friend or foe, tell it not; And unless it is a sin to thee, reveal it not.

9 For he hath heard thee, and observed thee, And when the time cometh he will hate thee.

10 Hast thou heard a word? let it die with thee: Be of good courage, it will not burst thee.

11 A fool will travail in pain with a word, As a woman in labour with a child.

12 As an arrow that sticketh in the flesh of the thigh, So is a word in a fool’s belly.

13 Reprove a friend; it may be he did it not: And if he did something, that he may do it no more.

14 Reprove thy neighbour; it may be he said it not: And if he hath said it, that he may not say it again.

15 Reprove a friend; for many times there is slander: And trust not every word.

16 There is one that slippeth, and not from the heart: And who is he that hath not sinned with his tongue?

17 Reprove thy neighbour before thou threaten him; And give place to the law of the Most High.


20 All wisdom is the fear of the Lord; And in all wisdom is the doing of the law.


22 And the knowledge of wickedness is not wisdom; And the prudence of sinners is not counsel.

23 There is a wickedness, and the same is abomination; And there is a fool wanting in wisdom.

24 Better is one that hath small understanding, and feareth, Than one that hath much prudence, and transgresseth the law.

25 There is an exquisite subtilty, and the same is unjust; And there is one that perverteth favour to gain a judgement.

26 There is one that doeth wickedly, that hangeth down his head with mourning; But inwardly he is full of deceit,

27 Bowing down his face, and making as if he were deaf of one ear: Where he is not known, he will be beforehand with thee.

28 And if for want of power he be hindered from sinning, If he find opportunity, he will do mischief.

29 A man shall be known by his look, And one that hath understanding shall be known by his face, when thou meetest him.

30 A man’s attire, and grinning laughter, And gait, shew what he is.

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