Sirach 6

1 And instead of a friend become not an enemy; For an evil name shall inherit shame and reproach: Even so shall the sinner that hath a double tongue.

2 Exalt not thyself in the counsel of thy soul; That thy soul be not torn in pieces as a bull:

3 Thou shalt eat up thy leaves, and destroy thy fruits, And leave thyself as a dry tree.

4 A wicked soul shall destroy him that hath gotten it, And shall make him a laughingstock to his enemies.

5 Sweet words will multiply a man’s friends; And a fair-speaking tongue will multiply courtesies.

6 Let those that are at peace with thee be many; But thy counsellors one of a thousand.

7 If thou wouldest get thee a friend, get him by proving, And be not in haste to trust him.

8 For there is a friend that is so for his own occasion; And he will not continue in the day of thy affliction.

9 And there is a friend that turneth to enmity; And he will discover strife to thy reproach.

10 And there is a friend that is a companion at the table; And he will not continue in the day of thy affliction.

11 And in thy prosperity he will be as thyself, And will be bold over thy servants:

12 If thou shalt be brought low, he will be against thee, And will hide himself from thy face.

13 Separate thyself from thine enemies; And beware of thy friends.

14 A faithful friend is a strong defence; And he that hath found him hath found a treasure.

15 There is nothing that can be taken in exchange for a faithful friend; And his excellency is beyond price.

16 A faithful friend is a medicine of life; And they that fear the Lord shall find him.

17 He that feareth the Lord directeth his friendship aright; For as he is, so is his neighbour also.

18 My son, gather instruction from thy youth up: And even unto hoar hairs thou shalt find wisdom.

19 Come unto her as one that ploweth and soweth, And wait for her good fruits; For thy toil shall be little in the tillage of her, And thou shalt eat of her fruits right soon.

20 How exceeding harsh is she to the unlearned! And he that is without understanding will not abide in her.

21 As a mighty stone of trial shall she rest upon him; And he will not delay to cast her from him.

22 For wisdom is according to her name; and she is not manifest unto many.

23 Give ear, my son, and accept my judgement, And refuse not my counsel,

24 And bring thy feet into her fetters, And thy neck into her chain.

25 Put thy shoulder under her, and bear her, And be not grieved with her bonds.

26 Come unto her with all thy soul, And keep her ways with thy whole power.

27 Search, and seek, and she shall be made known unto thee; And when thou hast got hold of her, let her not go.

28 For at the last thou shalt find her rest; And she shall be turned for thee into gladness.

29 And her fetters shall be to thee for a covering of strength, And her chains for a robe of glory.

30 For there is a golden ornament upon her, And her bands are a riband of blue.

31 Thou shalt put her on as a robe of glory, And shalt array thee with her as a crown of rejoicing.

32 My son, if thou wilt, thou shalt be instructed; And if thou wilt yield thy soul, thou shalt be prudent.

33 If thou love to hear, thou shalt receive; And if thou incline thine ear, thou shalt be wise.

34 Stand thou in the multitude of the elders; And whoso is wise, cleave thou unto him.

35 Be willing to listen to every godly discourse; And let not the proverbs of understanding escape thee.

36 If thou seest a man of understanding, get thee betimes unto him, And let thy foot wear out the steps of his doors.

37 Let thy mind dwell upon the ordinances of the Lord, And meditate continually in his commandments: He shall establish thine heart, And thy desire of wisdom shall be given unto thee.

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