December 09, 2002 Copyright © by United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
- He who does so grows no richer; he who wastes the little he has will be stripped bare.
- Wine and women make the mind giddy, and the companion of harlots becomes reckless.
- He who lightly trusts in them has no sense, and he who strays after them sins against his own life.
- Rottenness and worms will possess him, for contumacious desire destroys its owner.
- 1 He who gloats over evil will meet with evil, and he who repeats an evil report has no sense.
- Never repeat gossip, and you will not be reviled.
- Tell nothing to friend or foe; if you have a fault, reveal it not,
- For he who hears it will hold it against you, and in time become your enemy.
- Let anything you hear die within you; be assured it will not make you burst.
- When a fool hears something, he is in labor, like a woman giving birth to a child.
- Like an arrow lodged in a man's thigh is gossip in the breast of a fool.
- Admonish your friend--he may not have done it; and if he did, that he may not do it again.
- Admonish your neighbor--he may not have said it; and if he did, that he may not say it again.
- Admonish your friend--often it may be slander; every story you must not believe.
- Then, too, a man can slip and not mean it; who has not sinned with his tongue?
- Admonish your neighbor before you break with him; thus will you fulfill the law of the Most High.
- 2 All wisdom is fear of the LORD; perfect wisdom is the fulfillment of the law.
- The knowledge of wickedness is not wisdom, nor is there prudence in the counsel of sinners.
- There is a shrewdness that is detestable, while the simple man may be free from sin.
- There are those with little understanding who fear God, and those of great intelligence who violate the law.
- There is a shrewdness keen but dishonest, which by duplicity wins a judgment.
- There is the wicked man who is bowed in grief, but is full of guile within;
- He bows his head and feigns not to hear, but when not observed, he will take advantage of you:
- Even though his lack of strength keeps him from sinning, when he finds the opportunity, he will do harm.
- One can tell a man by his appearance; a wise man is known as such when first met.
- A man's attire, his hearty laughter and his gait, proclaim him for what he is.
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1 [5-16] An excellent commentary on the eighth commandment of the Decalogue, forbidding intemperance in speech through calumny, rash judgment, and detraction (Sirach 19:5-6), and inculcating discreet silence in defense of self and of neighbor (Sirach 19:7-11). Justice requires that an accused neighbor be given a hearing, and charity urges fraternal correction; both together fulfill the law of the Most High (Sirach 19:12-16); cf Matthew 7:1-2; 18:15-16.
2 [17-26] True and false wisdom as here described are synonymous with virtue and vice, with the fulfillment of the law and the violation of it.
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