|Wisdom of Sirach|| The King James Bible Baruch|
|Prayer of Azarias and Hymn of the Three Children|
1 And these are the words of the book, which Baruch the son of Nerias, the son of Maasias, the son of Sedecias, the son of Asadias, the son of Chelcias, wrote in Babylon,
2 In the fifth year, and in the seventh day of the month, what time as the Chaldeans took Jerusalem, and burnt it with fire.
3 And Baruch did read the words of this book in the hearing of Jechonias the son of Joachim king of Juda, and in the ears of all the people that came to hear the book,
4 And in the hearing of the nobles, and of the king's sons, and in the hearing of the elders, and of all the people, from the lowest unto the highest, even of all them that dwelt at Babylon by the river Sud.
5 Whereupon they wept, fasted, and prayed before the Lord.
6 They made also a collection of money according to every man's power:
7 And they sent it to Jerusalem unto Joachim the high priest, the son of Chelcias, son of Salom, and to the priests, and to all the people which were found with him at Jerusalem,
8 At the same time when he received the vessels of the house of the Lord, that were carried out of the temple, to return them into the land of Juda, the tenth day of the month Sivan, namely, silver vessels, which Sedecias the son of Josias king of Jada had made,
9 After that Nabuchodonosor king of Babylon had carried away Jechonias, and the princes, and the captives, and the mighty men, and the people of the land, from Jerusalem, and brought them unto Babylon.
10 And they said, Behold, we have sent you money to buy you burnt offerings, and sin offerings, and incense, and prepare ye manna, and offer upon the altar of the Lord our God;
11 And pray for the life of Nabuchodonosor king of Babylon, and for the life of Balthasar his son, that their days may be upon earth as the days of heaven:
12 And the Lord will give us strength, and lighten our eyes, and we shall live under the shadow of Nabuchodonosor king of Babylon, and under the shadow of Balthasar his son, and we shall serve them many days, and find favour in their sight.
13 Pray for us also unto the Lord our God, for we have sinned against the Lord our God; and unto this day the fury of the Lord and his wrath is not turned from us.
14 And ye shall read this book which we have sent unto you, to make confession in the house of the Lord, upon the feasts and solemn days.
15 And ye shall say, To the Lord our God belongeth righteousness, but unto us the confusion of faces, as it is come to pass this day, unto them of Juda, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem,
16 And to our kings, and to our princes, and to our priests, and to our prophets, and to our fathers:
17 For we have sinned before the Lord,
18 And disobeyed him, and have not hearkened unto the voice of the Lord our God, to walk in the commandments that he gave us openly:
19 Since the day that the Lord brought our forefathers out of the land of Egypt, unto this present day, we have been disobedient unto the Lord our God, and we have been negligent in not hearing his voice.
20 Wherefore the evils cleaved unto us, and the curse, which the Lord appointed by Moses his servant at the time that he brought our fathers out of the land of Egypt, to give us a land that floweth with milk and honey, like as it is to see this day.
21 Nevertheless we have not hearkened unto the voice of the Lord our God, according unto all the words of the prophets, whom he sent unto us:
22 But every man followed the imagination of his own wicked heart, to serve strange gods, and to do evil in the sight of the Lord our God.
1 Therefore the Lord hath made good his word, which he pronounced against us, and against our judges that judged Israel, and against our kings, and against our princes, and against the men of Israel and Juda,
2 To bring upon us great plagues, such as never happened under the whole heaven, as it came to pass in Jerusalem, according to the things that were written in the law of Moses;
3 That a man should eat the flesh of his own son, and the flesh of his own daughter.
4 Moreover he hath delivered them to be in subjection to all the kingdoms that are round about us, to be as a reproach and desolation among all the people round about, where the Lord hath scattered them.
5 Thus we were cast down, and not exalted, because we have sinned against the Lord our God, and have not been obedient unto his voice.
6 To the Lord our God appertaineth righteousness: but unto us and to our fathers open shame, as appeareth this day.
7 For all these plagues are come upon us, which the Lord hath pronounced against us
8 Yet have we not prayed before the Lord, that we might turn every one from the imaginations of his wicked heart.
9 Wherefore the Lord watched over us for evil, and the Lord hath brought it upon us: for the Lord is righteous in all his works which he hath commanded us.
10 Yet we have not hearkened unto his voice, to walk in the commandments of the Lord, that he hath set before us.
11 And now, O Lord God of Israel, that hast brought thy people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and high arm, and with signs, and with wonders, and with great power, and hast gotten thyself a name, as appeareth this day:
12 O Lord our God, we have sinned, we have done ungodly, we have dealt unrighteously in all thine ordinances.
13 Let thy wrath turn from us: for we are but a few left among the heathen, where thou hast scattered us.
14 Hear our prayers, O Lord, and our petitions, and deliver us for thine own sake, and give us favour in the sight of them which have led us away:
15 That all the earth may know that thou art the Lord our God, because Israel and his posterity is called by thy name.
16 O Lord, look down from thine holy house, and consider us: bow down thine ear, O Lord, to hear us.
17 Open thine eyes, and behold; for the dead that are in the graves, whose souls are taken from their bodies, will give unto the Lord neither praise nor righteousness:
18 But the soul that is greatly vexed, which goeth stooping and feeble, and the eyes that fail, and the hungry soul, will give thee praise and righteousness, O Lord.
19 Therefore we do not make our humble supplication before thee, O Lord our God, for the righteousness of our fathers, and of our kings.
20 For thou hast sent out thy wrath and indignation upon us, as thou hast spoken by thy servants the prophets, saying,
21 Thus saith the Lord, Bow down your shoulders to serve the king of Babylon: so shall ye remain in the land that I gave unto your fathers.
22 But if ye will not hear the voice of the Lord, to serve the king of Babylon,
23 I will cause to cease out of the cites of Judah, and from without Jerusalem, the voice of mirth, and the voice of joy, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride: and the whole land shall be desolate of inhabitants.
24 But we would not hearken unto thy voice, to serve the king of Babylon: therefore hast thou made good the words that thou spakest by thy servants the prophets, namely, that the bones of our kings, and the bones of our fathers, should be taken out of their place.
25 And, lo, they are cast out to the heat of the day, and to the frost of the night, and they died in great miseries by famine, by sword, and by pestilence.
26 And the house which is called by thy name hast thou laid waste, as it is to be seen this day, for the wickedness of the house of Israel and the house of Juda.
27 O Lord our God, thou hast dealt with us after all thy goodness, and according to all that great mercy of thine,
28 As thou spakest by thy servant Moses in the day when thou didst command him to write the law before the children of Israel, saying,
29 If ye will not hear my voice, surely this very great multitude shall be turned into a small number among the nations, where I will scatter them.
30 For I knew that they would not hear me, because it is a stiffnecked people: but in the land of their captivities they shall remember themselves.
31 And shall know that I am the Lord their God: for I will give them an heart, and ears to hear:
32 And they shall praise me in the land of their captivity, and think upon my name,
33 And return from their stiff neck, and from their wicked deeds: for they shall remember the way of their fathers, which sinned before the Lord.
34 And I will bring them again into the land which I promised with an oath unto their fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and they shall be lords of it: and I will increase them, and they shall not be diminished.
35 And I will make an everlasting covenant with them to be their God, and they shall be my people: and I will no more drive my people of Israel out of the land that I have given them.
1 O Lord Almighty, God of Israel, the soul in anguish the troubled spirit, crieth unto thee.
2 Hear, O Lord, and have mercy; for thou art merciful: and have pity upon us, because we have sinned before thee.
3 For thou endurest for ever, and we perish utterly.
4 O Lord Almighty, thou God of Israel, hear now the prayers of the dead Israelites, and of their children, which have sinned before thee, and not hearkened unto the voice of thee their God: for the which cause these plagues cleave unto us.
5 Remember not the iniquities of our forefathers: but think upon thy power and thy name now at this time.
6 For thou art the Lord our God, and thee, O Lord, will we praise.
7 And for this cause thou hast put thy fear in our hearts, to the intent that we should call upon thy name, and praise thee in our captivity: for we have called to mind all the iniquity of our forefathers, that sinned before thee.
8 Behold, we are yet this day in our captivity, where thou hast scattered us, for a reproach and a curse, and to be subject to payments, according to all the iniquities of our fathers, which departed from the Lord our God.
9 Hear, Israel, the commandments of life: give ear to understand wisdom.
10 How happeneth it Israel, that thou art in thine enemies' land, that thou art waxen old in a strange country, that thou art defiled with the dead,
11 That thou art counted with them that go down into the grave?
12 Thou hast forsaken the fountain of wisdom.
13 For if thou hadst walked in the way of God, thou shouldest have dwelled in peace for ever.
14 Learn where is wisdom, where is strength, where is understanding; that thou mayest know also where is length of days, and life, where is the light of the eyes, and peace.
15 Who hath found out her place? or who hath come into her treasures ?
16 Where are the princes of the heathen become, and such as ruled the beasts upon the earth;
17 They that had their pastime with the fowls of the air, and they that hoarded up silver and gold, wherein men trust, and made no end of their getting?
18 For they that wrought in silver, and were so careful, and whose works are unsearchable,
19 They are vanished and gone down to the grave, and others are come up in their steads.
20 Young men have seen light, and dwelt upon the earth: but the way of knowledge have they not known,
21 Nor understood the paths thereof, nor laid hold of it: their children were far off from that way.
22 It hath not been heard of in Chanaan, neither hath it been seen in Theman.
23 The Agarenes that seek wisdom upon earth, the merchants of Meran and of Theman, the authors of fables, and searchers out of understanding; none of these have known the way of wisdom, or remember her paths.
24 O Israel, how great is the house of God! and how large is the place of his possession!
25 Great, and hath none end; high, and unmeasurable.
26 There were the giants famous from the beginning, that were of so great stature, and so expert in war.
27 Those did not the Lord choose, neither gave he the way of knowledge unto them:
28 But they were destroyed, because they had no wisdom, and perished through their own foolishness.
29 Who hath gone up into heaven, and taken her, and brought her down from the clouds?
30 Who hath gone over the sea, and found her, and will bring her for pure gold?
31 No man knoweth her way, nor thinketh of her path.
32 But he that knoweth all things knoweth her, and hath found her out with his understanding: he that prepared the earth for evermore hath filled it with fourfooted beasts:
33 He that sendeth forth light, and it goeth, calleth it again, and it obeyeth him with fear.
34 The stars shined in their watches, and rejoiced: when he calleth them, they say, Here we be; and so with cheerfulness they shewed light unto him that made them.
35 This is our God, and there shall none other be accounted of in comparison of him
36 He hath found out all the way of knowledge, and hath given it unto Jacob his servant, and to Israel his beloved.
37 Afterward did he shew himself upon earth, and conversed with men.
1 This is the book of the commandments of God, and the law that endureth for ever: all they that keep it shall come to life; but such as leave it shall die.
2 Turn thee, O Jacob, and take hold of it: walk in the presence of the light thereof, that thou mayest be illuminated.
3 Give not thine honour to another, nor the things that are profitable unto thee to a strange nation.
4 O Israel, happy are we: for things that are pleasing to God are made known unto us.
5 Be of good cheer, my people, the memorial of Israel.
6 Ye were sold to the nations, not for [your] destruction: but because ye moved God to wrath, ye were delivered unto the enemies.
7 For ye provoked him that made you by sacrificing unto devils, and not to God.
8 Ye have forgotten the everlasting God, that brought you up; and ye have grieved Jerusalem, that nursed you.
9 For when she saw the wrath of God coming upon you, she said, Hearken, O ye that dwell about Sion: God hath brought upon me great mourning;
10 For I saw the captivity of my sons and daughters, which the Everlasting brought upon them.
11 With joy did I nourish them; but sent them away with weeping and mourning.
12 Let no man rejoice over me, a widow, and forsaken of many, who for the sins of my children am left desolate; because they departed from the law of God.
13 They knew not his statutes, nor walked in the ways of his commandments, nor trod in the paths of discipline in his righteousness.
14 Let them that dwell about Sion come, and remember ye the captivity of my sons and daughters, which the Everlasting hath brought upon them.
15 For he hath brought a nation upon them from far, a shameless nation, and of a strange language, who neither reverenced old man, nor pitied child.
16 These have carried away the dear beloved children of the widow, and left her that was alone desolate without daughters.
17 But what can I help you?
18 For he that brought these plagues upon you will deliver you from the hands of your enemies.
19 Go your way, O my children, go your way: for I am left desolate.
20 I have put off the clothing of peace, and put upon me the sackcloth of my prayer: I will cry unto the Everlasting in my days.
21 Be of good cheer, O my children, cry unto the Lord, and he will deliver you from the power and hand of the enemies.
22 For my hope is in the Everlasting, that he will save you; and joy is come unto me from the Holy One, because of the mercy which shall soon come unto you from the Everlasting our Saviour.
23 For I sent you out with mourning and weeping: but God will give you to me again with joy and gladness for ever.
24 Like as now the neighbours of Sion have seen your captivity: so shall they see shortly your salvation from our God which shall come upon you with great glory, and brightness of the Everlasting.
25 My children, suffer patiently the wrath that is come upon you from God: for thine enemy hath persecuted thee; but shortly thou shalt see his destruction, and shalt tread upon his neck.
26 My delicate ones have gone rough ways, and were taken away as a flock caught of the enemies.
27 Be of good comfort, O my children, and cry unto God: for ye shall be remembered of him that brought these things upon you.
28 For as it was your mind to go astray from God: so, being returned, seek him ten times more.
29 For he that hath brought these plagues upon you shall bring you everlasting joy with your salvation.
30 Take a good heart, O Jerusalem: for he that gave thee that name will comfort thee.
31 Miserable are they that afflicted thee, and rejoiced at thy fall.
32 Miserable are the cities which thy children served: miserable is she that received thy sons.
33 For as she rejoiced at thy ruin, and was glad of thy fall: so shall she be grieved for her own desolation.
34 For I will take away the rejoicing of her great multitude, and her pride shall be turned into mourning.
35 For fire shall come upon her from the Everlasting, long to endure; and she shall be inhabited of devils for a great time.
36 O Jerusalem, look about thee toward the east, and behold the joy that cometh unto thee from God.
37 Lo, thy sons come, whom thou sentest away, they come gathered together from the east to the west by the word of the Holy One, rejoicing in the glory of God.
1 Put off, O Jerusalem, the garment of mourning and affliction, and put on the comeliness of the glory that cometh from God for ever.
2 Cast about thee a double garment of the righteousness which cometh from God; and set a diadem on thine head of the glory of the Everlasting.
3 For God will shew thy brightness unto every country under heaven.
4 For thy name shall be called of God for ever The peace of righteousness, and The glory of God's worship.
5 Arise, O Jerusalem, and stand on high, and look about toward the east, and behold thy children gathered from the west unto the east by the word of the Holy One, rejoicing in the remembrance of God.
6 For they departed from thee on foot, and were led away of their enemies: but God bringeth them unto thee exalted with glory, as children of the kingdom.
7 For God hath appointed that every high hill, and banks of long continuance, should be cast down, and valleys filled up, to make even the ground, that Israel may go safely in the glory of God,
8 Moreover even the woods and every sweetsmelling tree shall overshadow Israel by the commandment of God.
9 For God shall lead Israel with joy in the light of his glory with the mercy and righteousness that cometh from him.
Chapter 6 (Epistle of Jeremiah)
1 A copy of an epistle, which Jeremy sent unto them which were to be led captives into Babylon by the king of the Babylonians, to certify them, as it was commanded him of God.
2 Because of the sins which ye have committed before God, ye shall be led away captives into Babylon by Nabuchodonosor king of the Babylonians.
3 So when ye be come unto Babylon, ye shall remain there many years, and for a long season, namely, seven generations: and after that I will bring you away peaceably from thence.
4 Now shall ye see in Babylon gods of silver, and of gold, and of wood, borne upon shoulders, which cause the nations to fear.
5 Beware therefore that ye in no wise be like to strangers, neither be ye and of them, when ye see the multitude before them and behind them, worshipping them.
6 But say ye in your hearts, O Lord, we must worship thee.
7 For mine angel is with you, and I myself caring for your souls.
8 As for their tongue, it is polished by the workman, and they themselves are gilded and laid over with silver; yet are they but false, and cannot speak.
9 And taking gold, as it were for a virgin that loveth to go gay, they make crowns for the heads of their gods.
10 Sometimes also the priests convey from their gods gold and silver, and bestow it upon themselves.
11 Yea, they will give thereof to the common harlots, and deck them as men with garments, [being] gods of silver, and gods of gold, and wood.
12 Yet cannot these gods save themselves from rust and moth, though they be covered with purple raiment.
13 They wipe their faces because of the dust of the temple, when there is much upon them.
14 And he that cannot put to death one that offendeth him holdeth a sceptre, as though he were a judge of the country.
15 He hath also in his right hand a dagger and an ax: but cannot deliver himself from war and thieves.
16 Whereby they are known not to be gods: therefore fear them not.
17 For like as a vessel that a man useth is nothing worth when it is broken; even so it is with their gods: when they be set up in the temple, their eyes be full of dust through the feet of them that come in.
18 And as the doors are made sure on every side upon him that offendeth the king, as being committed to suffer death: even so the priests make fast their temples with doors, with locks, and bars, lest their gods be spoiled with robbers.
19 They light them candles, yea, more than for themselves, whereof they cannot see one.
20 They are as one of the beams of the temple, yet they say their hearts are gnawed upon by things creeping out of the earth; and when they eat them and their clothes, they feel it not.
21 Their faces are blacked through the smoke that cometh out of the temple.
22 Upon their bodies and heads sit bats, swallows, and birds, and the cats also.
23 By this ye may know that they are no gods: therefore fear them not.
24 Notwithstanding the gold that is about them to make them beautiful, except they wipe off the rust, they will not shine: for neither when they were molten did they feel it.
25 The things wherein there is no breath are bought for a most high price.
26 They are borne upon shoulders, having no feet whereby they declare unto men that they be nothing worth.
27 They also that serve them are ashamed: for if they fall to the ground at any time, they cannot rise up again of themselves: neither, if one set them upright, can they move of themselves: neither, if they be bowed down, can they make themselves straight: but they set gifts before them as unto dead men.
28 As for the things that are sacrificed unto them, their priests sell and abuse; in like manner their wives lay up part thereof in salt; but unto the poor and impotent they give nothing of it.
29 Menstruous women and women in childbed eat their sacrifices: by these things ye may know that they are no gods: fear them not.
30 For how can they be called gods? because women set meat before the gods of silver, gold, and wood.
31 And the priests sit in their temples, having their clothes rent, and their heads and beards shaven, and nothing upon their heads.
32 They roar and cry before their gods, as men do at the feast when one is dead.
33 The priests also take off their garments, and clothe their wives and children.
34 Whether it be evil that one doeth unto them, or good, they are not able to recompense it: they can neither set up a king, nor put him down.
35 In like manner, they can neither give riches nor money: though a man make a vow unto them, and keep it not, they will not require it.
36 They can save no man from death, neither deliver the weak from the mighty.
37 They cannot restore a blind man to his sight, nor help any man in his distress.
38 They can shew no mercy to the widow, nor do good to the fatherless.
39 Their gods of wood, and which are overlaid with gold and silver, are like the stones that be hewn out of the mountain: they that worship them shall be confounded.
40 How should a man then think and say that they are gods, when even the Chaldeans themselves dishonour them?
41 Who if they shall see one dumb that cannot speak, they bring him, and intreat Bel that he may speak, as though he were able to understand.
42 Yet they cannot understand this themselves, and leave them: for they have no knowledge.
43 The women also with cords about them, sitting in the ways, burn bran for perfume: but if any of them, drawn by some that passeth by, lie with him, she reproacheth her fellow, that she was not thought as worthy as herself, nor her cord broken.
44 Whatsoever is done among them is false: how may it then be thought or said that they are gods?
45 They are made of carpenters and goldsmiths: they can be nothing else than the workmen will have them to be.
46 And they themselves that made them can never continue long; how should then the things that are made of them be gods?
47 For they left lies and reproaches to them that come after.
48 For when there cometh any war or plague upon them, the priests consult with themselves, where they may be hidden with them.
49 How then cannot men perceive that they be no gods, which can neither save themselves from war, nor from plague?
50 For seeing they be but of wood, and overlaid with silver and gold, it shall be known hereafter that they are false:
51 And it shall manifestly appear to all nations and kings that they are no gods, but the works of men's hands, and that there is no work of God in them.
52 Who then may not know that they are no gods?
53 For neither can they set up a king in the land, nor give rain unto men.
54 Neither can they judge their own cause, nor redress a wrong, being unable: for they are as crows between heaven and earth.
55 Whereupon when fire falleth upon the house of gods of wood, or laid over with gold or silver, their priests will flee away, and escape; but they themselves shall be burned asunder like beams.
56 Moreover they cannot withstand any king or enemies: how can it then be thought or said that they be gods?
57 Neither are those gods of wood, and laid over with silver or gold, able to escape either from thieves or robbers.
58 Whose gold, and silver, and garments wherewith they are clothed, they that are strong take, and go away withal: neither are they able to help themselves.
59 Therefore it is better to be a king that sheweth his power, or else a profitable vessel in an house, which the owner shall have use of, than such false gods; or to be a door in an house, to keep such things therein, than such false gods. or a pillar of wood in a a palace, than such false gods.
60 For sun, moon, and stars, being bright and sent to do their offices, are obedient.
61 In like manner the lightning when it breaketh forth is easy to be seen; and after the same manner the wind bloweth in every country.
62 And when God commandeth the clouds to go over the whole world, they do as they are bidden.
63 And the fire sent from above to consume hills and woods doeth as it is commanded: but these are like unto them neither in shew nor power.
64 Wherefore it is neither to be supposed nor said that they are gods, seeing, they are able neither to judge causes, nor to do good unto men.
65 Knowing therefore that they are no gods, fear them not,
66 For they can neither curse nor bless kings:
67 Neither can they shew signs in the heavens among the heathen, nor shine as the sun, nor give light as the moon.
68 The beasts are better than they: for they can get under a cover and help themselves.
69 It is then by no means manifest unto us that they are gods: therefore fear them not.
70 For as a scarecrow in a garden of cucumbers keepeth nothing: so are their gods of wood, and laid over with silver and gold.
71 And likewise their gods of wood, and laid over with silver and gold, are like to a white thorn in an orchard, that every bird sitteth upon; as also to a dead body, that is east into the dark.
72 And ye shall know them to be no gods by the bright purple that rotteth upon them: and they themselves afterward shall be eaten, and shall be a reproach in the country.
73 Better therefore is the just man that hath none idols: for he shall be far from reproach.
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