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Apocrypha. ually procured our good, as also of blameless 19 Therefore ye shall publish the copy Esther, partaker of our kingdom, with their of this letter in all places, that the Jews may whole nation.

freely live after their own laws. 14 For by these means he thought, find- 20 And ye shall aid them, that even the ing us destitute of friends, to have translated same day, being the thirteenth day of the the kingdom of the Persians to the Mace twelth month Adar, they may be avenged donians

on them, who in the time of their affliction 15 But we find that the Jews, whom this shall set upon them. wicked wretch hath delivered to utter de- 21 For Almighty God hath turned to joy struction, are no evil doers, but live by most unto them the day wherein the chosen pecjust laws.

ple should have perished. 16 And that they be children of the most 22 Ye shall therefore among your solema high and most mighty living God, who hath feasts keep it an high day with all feasting: ordered the kingdom both unto us and to 23 That both now and hereafter there may our progenitors in the most excellent manner. be safety to us, and the well affected Per

17 9 Wherefore ye shall do well not to sians; but to those which do conspire against put in execution the letters sent unto you us, a memorial of destruction. by Aman the son of Amadatha.

24 Therefore every city and country 18 For he, that was the worker of these whatsoever, which shall not do according to things, is hanged at the gates of Susa with these things, shall be destroyed without merali his family: God, who ruleth all things, cy, with fire and sword, and shall be made speedily rendering vengeance to him accord- not only unpassable for men, but also most ing to his deserts.

hateful to wild beasts and fowls for ever.


11 Therefore beware of murmuring, which 2 To whom God shiwetb himself, 4 and wisdom is unprofitable ; and refrain your tongue

"berself. 6 An evil speaker cannot lie bid. from backbiting: for there is no word so OVĚ righteousness, ye that be judges of secret, that shall go for nought : and the

mouth that belieth, slayeth the soul good (heart,) and in simplicity of heart seek 12 Seek not death in the error of your him.

life: and pull not upon yourselves destruc2 4 For he will be found of them that i tion with the works of your hands. tempt him not : and shewech himself unto 13 For God made not death: neither hath such as do not distrust him.

he pleasure in the destruction of the living. 3 For froward thoughts separate from 14 For he created all things, that they God: and his power, when it is tried, re- might have their being: and the generations proveth the unwise.

of the world were healthful; and there is 4 For into a malicious soul wisdom shall no poison of destruction in them, nor the not enter ; nor dwell in the body that is kingdom of death upon the earth : subject unto sin.

15 (For righteousness is immortal :) 5 For the holy spirit of discipline will see 16 But ungodly men with their works deceit, and remove from thoughts that are and words called it to them: for when they without understanding, and will not abide thought to have it their friend, they consumwhen unrighteousness cometh in.

ed to nught, and made a covenant with it, 6 4 For wisdom is a loving spirit ; and because they are worthy to take part with it. will not acquit a blasphemer of his words :

CHAP II. for God is witness oi' luis reins, and a true be- 1 The wicked think this life sbort, 5 and of holder of his heart, and a hearer of his tongue. other after this : 6 therefore they will taie

7 For the spirit of the Lord filleth the thiir plusure in this, 10 and conspire agaixst world : and that which containeth all things, hath knowledge of the voice.

T'OR the ungodly said, reasoning with theme 8 Therefore he that speaketh unrighteous selves, but not aright, Our life is short things cannot be hid : neither shall and tedious, and in the death of a man there geance, when it punisheth, pass by him. is no remedy: neither was there any man

9 For inquisition shail be made into the known to have returned from the grave. counsels of the ungodly : and the sound of 2 For we are born at all adventure : and his words shall come unto the Lord for the we shall be hereafter as though we had neve manifestation of his wicked deeds.

er been : for the breath in our nostrils is as 10 For the ear of jealousy heareth all || smoke, and a little spark in the moring of things; and the noise of murmurings is not

our heart : hid.

3 Which being extinguished, our body

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Cuap. IIL

Apocrypba. shall be turned into ashes, and our spirit shall || of righteousness, nor discerned a reward for vanish as che soft air,

blameless souls. 4 And our name shall be forgotten in time, 23 For God created man to be immortal,and and no man shall have our works in remem- made him to be an image of his own eternity: brance, and our life shall pass away as the 24 Nevertheless, through envy of the devil trace of a cloud, and shall be dispersed as the came death into the world : and they that do mist that is driven away with the beams of hold of his side do find it. the sun, and overcome with the heat thereof.

CHAP. III. 5 For our time is a very shadow that pass- 1 The godly are bappy in their death, 5 and in their eth away; and after our end there is no re- troubles : 10 the wicked are not, nor their chilturning: for it is fast sealed, so that no man dren. 16 Tbe adulterer and bis seed sball pérish. cometh again.

UT the souls of the rightcous are in the 6 Come on therefore, let us enjoy the good hand of God, and there shall no torment things that are present : and let us speedily touch them. use the creatures like as in youth.

2 In the sight of the unwise they seemed to 7 Let us fill ourselves with costly wine die : and their departure is taken for misery, and ointments : and let no flower of the 3 And their going from us to be utter despring pass by us :

struction : but they are in peace. 8 Let us crown ourselves with roscbuds, 4 For though they be punished in the sight before they be withered :

of men, yet is their hope full of immortality. 9 Let none of us go without his part of 5 F And having been a little chastised, they our voluptuousness: let us leave tokens of shall be greatly rewarded : for God proved our joyfulness in every place : for this is our them, and found them worthy for himself. portion, and our lot is this.

6 As gold in the furnace hath he tried them, 10 Let us oppress the poor righteous man, and received them as a burnt offering. let us not spare the widow, nor reverence the 7 And in the time of their visitation, they ancient gray hairs of the aged.

shall shine, and run to and fro like sparks 11 Let our strength be the law of justice : || among the stubble. for that which is feeble is found to be nothing 8 They shall judge the nations, and have worth.

dominion over the people, and their Lord shall 12 Therefore let us lie in wait for the reign for ever. righteous : because he is not for our turn, 9 They that put their trust in him shall and he is clean contrary to our doings : he understand the truth : and such as be faithupbraideth us with our offending the law, ful in love shall abide with him : for grace and objecteth to our infamy the transgressings and mercy is to his saints, and he hath care of our education.

for his elect. 13 He professeth to have the knowledge 10 ? But the ungodly shall be punished of God: and he calleth himself the child of according to their own imaginations, which the Lord.

have neglected the righteous, and forsaken 14 He was made to reprove our thoughts. the Lord.

15 He is grievous unto us even to behoid: 11 For whoso despiseth wisdom and nurfor his life is not like other men’s, his ways ture, he is miserable, and their hope is vain, are of another fashion.

their labours unfruitful, and their works un16 We are esteemed of him as counterfeits : profitable : he abstaineth from our ways as from filthi- 12 Their wives are foolish, and their chil. ness : he pronounceth the end of the just to dren wicked : be blessed, and maketh his boast that God is 13 Their offspring is cursed. Wherefore his father.

blessed is the barren that is undefiled, which 17 Let us sec if his words be true: and let hath not known the sinful bed : she shall have us prove what shall happen in the end of him. fruit in the visitation of souls.

18 For if the just man be the son of God, 14 And blessed is the eunuch, which with he will help him, and deliver him from the his hands hath wrought no iniquity, nor imhand of his enemies.

agined wicked things against God: for unto 19 Let us examine him with despitefulness him shall be given the special gift of faith, and torture, that we may know his meekness and an inheritance in the temple of the Lord and prove his patience.

more acceptable to his mind. 20 Let us condemn him with a shameful 15 For glorious is the fruit of good labours : death : for by his own saying he shall be re- and the root of wisdom shall never fall away. spected.

16 Ş As for the children of adulterers they 21 Such things they did imagine, and were shall not come to their perfection, and the deceived : for their own wickedness hath seed of an unrighteous bed shall be rooted out. blinded them.

17 For though they live long, yet shall chey 22 As for the mysteries of God, they knew | be nothing regarciedt: and their last age shall them not: neither hoped they for the wages i be without honour.

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Apocryphs. . 18 Or, if they die quickly, they have no but God shall laugh them to scorn ; and the hope, neither comfort in the day of trial. shall hereafter be a vile carcase, and 3 re

19 For horrible is the end of the unright- proach among the dead for evermore. eous generation.

19 For he shall rend them, and cast them CHAP. IV.

down headlong, that they shall be peechless: 1 Tbe chaste man shall be crowned. 3 Bastard | and he shall shake them from the foundation; slips shall not tbrive.

and they shall be utterly laid waste, and be B ETTER it is to have no children, and to in sorrow; and their memorial shail perista

have virtue: for the memorial thereof is 20 And when they cast up the accounts of immortal : because it is known with God, and their sins, they shall come with fear : and with men.

their own iniquities shall convince them to 2 When it is present, men take example at their face. it; and when it is gone, they desire it: it

CHAP. V. weareth a crown, and triumpheth for ever, I The wicked shall zonder at the godly, 4 and conhaving gotten the victory, striving for unde- fess their error, 5 and the vanity of their lives. filed rewards.

'HEN shall the righteous man stand in 3 g But the multiplying brood of the un- great boldness before the face of such godly shall not thrive, nor take deep rooting as have afflicted him, and made no account from bastard slips, nor lay any fast foundation. of his labours.

4 For though they flourish in branches for 2 When they see it, they shall be troubled a time; yet standing not fast, they shall be with terrible fear, and shall be amazed at the shaken with the wind, and through the force strangeness of his salvation, so far beyond all of winds tKey shall be rooted out.

that they looked for. 5 The imperfect branches shall be broken 3 And they repenting and groaning for off, their fruit unprofitable, not ripe to eat, anguish of spirit shall say within themselves, yea, meet for nothing.

This was he, whom we had sometimes in de6 For children begotten of unlawful beds, rision, and a proverb of reproach : are witnesses of wickedness against their pa- 4 q We fools accounted his life madness, rents in their trial.

and his end to be without honour : 7 But though the righteous be prevented 5 ( How is he numbered among the chilwith death, yet shall he be at rest.

dren of God, and his lot is among the saints! 8 For honourable age is not that which 6 Therefore have we erred from the way standeth in length of time, nor that is meas- of truth, and the light of righteousness hath ured by number of years.

not shined unto us, and the sun of righteous9 But wisdom is the gray hair unto men, ness rose not upon us. and an unspotted life is old age.

7 We wearied ourselves in the way of 10 He pleased God, and was beloved of | wickedness and destruction : yea, we have him :

: so that living among sinners he was gone through deserts, where there lay no translated.

way: but as for the way of the Lord, we 11 Yea, speedily was he taken away, lest have not known it. that wickedness should alter his understand- 8 What hath pride profited us? or what ing, or deceit beguile his soul.

good hath riches with our vaunting brought 12 For the bewitching of naughtiness doth obscure things that are honcst; and the wan- 9 All those things are passed away like dering of concupiscence doth undermine the a shadow, and as a post that hasteth by; simple mind.

10 And as a ship that passeth over the 13 He, being made perfect in a short time, waves of the water, which when it is gone fulfilled a long time :

by, the trace thereof cannot be found, neither 14 For his soul pleased the Lord: there the pathway of the keel in the waves ; fore hasted he to take bim away from among 11 Or as when a bird hath flown through the wicked.

the air, there is no token of her way to be 15 This the people saw, and understood it found, but the light air being beaten with not, neither laid they up this in their minds, the stroke of her wings, and parted with the that his grace and mercy is with his saints, violent noise and motion of them, is passed and that he hath respect unto his chosen. through, and therein afterward no sign

16 Thus the righteous that is dead shall where she went is to be found; condemn the ungodly which are living ; and 12 Or like as when an arrow is shot at a youth that is soon perfected the many years mark, it parteth the air, which immediately and old age of the unrighteous.

cometh together again, so that a man cannot 17 For they shall see the end of the wise, know where it went through: and shall not understand what God in his 13 Even so we in like manner, as soon as counsel hath decreed of him, and to what we were born, began to draw to our end, and end the Lord hath set him in safety. had no sign of virtue to shew; but were

18 They shall see him, and despise him; consumed in our own wickedness.

us ?


Apocrypha 14 For the hope of the ungodly is like 9 Unto you therefore, O kings, do I speak, dust that is blown away with the wind ; like that ye may learn wisdom, and not fall away. a thin froth that is driven away with the 10 For they that keep holiness holily shall storm; like as the smoke which is dispersed be judged holy : and they that have learned here and there with a tempest, and passeth such things shall find what to answer. away as the remembrance of a guest that tar- IT Wherefore set your affection upon rieth but a day.

my words; desire them, and ye shall be in15 But the righteous live for evermore;

structed. their reward also is with the Lord, and the 12 f Wisdom is glorious, and never fadcare of theni is with the Most High. eth away: yea, she is easily seen of them thad

16 Therefore shall they receive a glorious | love her, and found of such as seek her. kingdom, and a beautiful crown from the 13 She preventeth them that desire her, Lord's hand : for with his right hand shall in making herself first known unto them. he cover them, and with his arm shall he 14 Whoso seeketh her early shall have no protect them.

great travail : for he shall find her sitting at 17 He shall take to him his jealousy for his doors. complete armour, and make the creature his 15 To think therefore upon her is weapon for the revenge of bis enemies perfection of wisdom : and whoso watcbeth

18 He shall put on righteousness as a for her shall quickly be without care. breastplate, and true judgment instead of an 16 For she goeth about seeking such as helmet.

are worthy of her, sheweth herself favoura. 19 He shall take holiness for an invincibly unto them in the ways, and meeteth them ble shield.

in every thought. 20 His severe wrath shall he sharpen for 17 For the very true beginning of her is a sword, and the world shall fight with him the desire of discipline ; and the care of disagainst the unwise.

cipline is love; 21 Then shall the right aiming thunder- 18 And love is the keeping of her laws ; bolts go abroad; and from the clouds, as from and the giving heed unto her laws is the asa well drawn bow, shall they fly to the mark. surance of incorruption ;

22 And hailstones full of wrath shall be 19 And incorruption maketh us near uns cast as out of a stone bow, and the water of to God : the sea shall rage against them, and the floods 20 Therefore the desire of wisdom bring. shall cruelly drown them.

eth to a kingdom. 23 Yea, a mighty wind shall stand up a- 21 f If your delight be then in thrones gainst them, and like a storm shall blow them and sceptres, O ye kings of the people, honaway : thus iniquity shall lay waste the our wisdoni, that ye may reign for evermore. whole earth, and ill dealing shall overthrow 22 As for wisdom, what she is, and how the thrones of the mighty.

she came up, I will tell you, and will not hide CHAP. VI.

mysteries from you : but wi!l seek her out 1 Kings must give ear : 3 tbey bave their power from the beginning of her nativity, and bring

from God, 5 who will not spare them. 12 Wise || the knowledge of her into light, and will not dom is soon found: 21 princes must seek for it. || pass over the truth.

EAR therefore, O ye kings, and under- 23 Neither will I go with consuming envy: ends of the earth.

wisdom. 2 Give ear, ye that rule the people, and 24 But the multitude of the wise is the glory in the multitude of nations.

welfare of the world : and a wise king is the 3 For power is given you of the Lord, | upholding of the people. and sovereignty from the Highest, who shall 25 Receive therefore instruction through try your works, and search out your counsels. | my words, and it shall do you good. 4 Because, being ministers of his kingdom,

CHAP. VII. ye have not judged arighe, nor kept the law,| 1 All men have their beginning and end alike. nor walked after the counsel of God;

8 He preferred wisdom before all things else. 5 | Horribly and speedily shall he come MYSELF also am a mortal man,

like to

I upon you : for a sharp judgment shall be to all, and the offspring of him that was first them that be in high places.

made of the earth, 6 For mercy will soon pardon the meanest: 2 And in my mother's womb was fashionbut mighty men shall be mightily tormented. I ed to be flesh in the time of ten months, be

7 For he which is Lord over all shall fearing compacted in blood, of the seed of man, no man's person, neither shall he stand in awe and the pleasure that came with sleep. of any man's greatness : for he hath made 3 And when I was born, I drew in the the small and great, and careth for all alike. common air, and fell upon the earth, which

& But a sore trial shall come upon the is of like nature, and the first voice which I mighty.

uttered was crying, as all others do.

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Apocrypls. 4 I was nursed in swaddling clothes, and 24 For wisdom is more moving than any that with cares.

motion : she passeth and goeth through all 5 For there is no king that had any other things by reason of her pureness

. beginning of birth.

25 For she is the breath of the power of 6 For all men have one entrance into life, || God, and a pure influence flowing írom the and the like going out.

glory of the Almighty : therefore can no de. 7 Wherefore I prayed, and understanding | filed thing fall into her. was given me: I culed upon God, and the spi- 26 For she is the brightness of the everrit of wisdom came to me.

lasting light, the unspotted mirror of the 8( I preferred her before sceptres and power of God, and the image of his goodness. thrones, and esteemed riches nothing in com- 27 And being but one, she can do all parison of her.

things : and remaining in herself she maketh 9 Neither compared I unto her any pre- | all things new : and in all ages entering into

because all gold in respect of her || holy souls, she maketh them friends of God, is as a little sand, and silver shall be counted and prophets. as clay before her.

28 For God loveth none but him that 10ʻI loved her above health and beauty, || dwelleth with wisdom. and chose to have her instead of light : for 29 For she is more beautiful than the sun, the light that cometh from her never goeth and above all the order of stars : being com

pared with the light, she is found before it. 11 All good things together came to me 30 For after this cometh night : but vice with her,and innumerable richesin her hands. shall not prevail against wisdom. 12 And I rejoiced in them all, because wis

CHAP. VINI. dom goeth before them : and I knew not that 2 He is in love with wisdom : 4 for be ibat bat5 she was the mother of them.

it, bath every good thing. 13. I learned diligently, and do communi- WISDOM reacheth from one end to ancate her liberally : I do not hide her riches. other mightily : and sweetly doth she

14 For she is a treasure unto men that order all things. never faileth : which they that use become 2 4 I loved her, and sought ber out from the friends of God, being commended for the my youth, I desired to make ber my spouse, gifts that come from learning.

and I was a lover of her beauty. 15 God hath granted me to speak as I 3 In that she is conversant with God, she would, and to conceive as is meet for the magnifieth her nobility: yea, the Lord of all things that are given me: because it is he things himself loved her. that leadeth unto wisdom, and directeth the 4 For she is privy to the mysteries of the wise.

knowledge of God, and a lover of his works. 16 For in his hand are both we and our 5 If riches be a possession to be desired in words ; all wisdom also, and knowledge of this life ; what is richer than wisdom, that workmanship.

worketh all things? 17 For he hath given me certain knowl- 6 And if prudence work ; who of all that edge of the things that are, namely, to know are, is a more cunning workman than she ? how the world was made, and the operation 7 And if a man love righteousness, her laof the elements :

bours are virtues: for she teacheth temperance 18 The beginning, ending, and midst of | and prudence, justice and fortitude : which the times : the alterations of the turnings are such things, as men can have nothing of the sun, and the change of seasons : more profitable in their life.

19 The circuits of years, and the positions 8 If a man desire much experience, she of stars :

knoweth things of old, and conjectureth arigbo 20 The natures of living creatures, and what is to come : she knoweth the subtilties the furies of wild beasts : the violence of of speeches, and can expound dark sentences : winds, and the reasonings of inen : the diver- she foresceth signs and wonders, and the sities of plants, and the virtues of roots : events of seasons and times.

21 And all such things as are either secret 9 Therefore I purposed to take her to me or manifest, them I know.

to live with me, knowing that she would be 29 For wisdom, which is the worker of all a counsellor of good things, and a comfort in things, taught me : for in her is an under- cares and grief. standing spirit, holy, one only, manifold, sub- 10 for her sake I shall have estimation a. til, lively, clear, undefiled, plain, not subject mong the multitude, and honour with the to hurt, loving the thing that is good, quick, elders, though I be young. which cannot be letted, ready to do good, 11 I shall be found of a quick conceit in

23 Kind to man, steadfast, sure, free from judgment, and shall be admired in the sight care, having all power, overseeing all things, of great men. and going through all understanding, pure 12 When I hold my tongue, they shall bide and mest subtil spirits.

my leisure, and when I speak, they shall give

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