Sirach chapter 40

The author shares observations from daily living, infusing them with his own insights and wisdom.

 


 

The Book of Sirach is recognized as Deuterocanonical Scripture by the Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, and Catholic Churches

 


 

OBSERVATIONS FROM DAILY LIVING

 

VERSE 1. Great travail is created for every man, And a heavy yoke is upon the sons of Adam, From the day of their coming forth from their mother’s womb, Until the day for their burial in the mother of all things.

a heavy yoke is upon the sons of Adam. The Lord Jesus acknowledged that in this world, we will have trouble. Our human existence is marbled with troubles and suffering. That reality is reflected in Buddhism, where the First Noble Truth is that all of life is suffering.

Sirach 2:4. Accept whatever is brought upon you, And be patient when you suffer humiliation.

Sirach 40:1. Great travail is created for every man, And a heavy yoke is upon the sons of Adam, From the day of their coming forth from their mother’s womb, Until the day for their burial in the mother of all things.

John 16:33. I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world.

1 Thessalonians 3:4. For most certainly, when we were with you, we told you beforehand that we are to suffer affliction, even as it happened, and you know.

 

VERSE 2. The expectation of things to come, and the day of death, Trouble their thoughts, and cause fear of heart;

 

VERSE 3. From him that sits on a throne of glory, Even to him that is humbled in earth and ashes;

 

VERSE 4. From him that wears purple and a crown, Even to him that is clothed with a hempen frock.

 

VERSE 5. There is wrath, and jealousy, and trouble, and disquiet, And fear of death, and anger, and strife; And in the time of rest upon his bed His night sleep does change his knowledge.

His night sleep does change his knowledge. Our dreams often reflect our daily lives. Our daily struggles can be selected in our nightly dreaming.

 

VERSE 6. A little or nothing is his resting, And afterward in his sleep, as in a day of keeping watch, He is troubled in the vision of his heart, As one that has escaped from the front of battle.

 

VERSE 7. In the very time of his deliverance he awakens, And marvels that the fear is nothing.

As we reach the safety of eternity, we will wake up astonished that there was nothing for us to fear.

Jesus often said: “Do not be afraid.”

 

VERSE 8. It is thus with all flesh, from man to beast, And upon sinners sevenfold more.

 

VERSE 9. Death, and bloodshed, and strife, and sword, Calamities, famine, suffering, and the scourge;

 

VERSE 10. All these things were created for the wicked, And because of them came the flood.

 

VERSE 11. All things that are of the earth turn to the earth again: And all things that are of the waters return into the sea.

 

VERSE 12. All bribery and injustice shall be blotted out; And good faith shall stand forever.

 

VERSE 13. The goods of the unjust shall be dried up like a river, And like a great thunder in rain shall go off in noise.

 

VERSE 14. In opening his hands a man shall be made glad: So shall transgressors utterly fail.

 

VERSE 15. The children of the ungodly shall not put forth many branches; And are as unclean roots upon a sheer rock.

 

VERSE 16. The sedge that grows upon every water and bank of a river Shall be plucked up before all grass.

 

VERSE 17. Bounty is as a garden of blessings, And almsgiving endures forever.

 

VERSE 18. The life of one that labors, and is content, shall be made sweet; And he that finds a treasure is above both.

 

VERSE 19. Children and the building of a city establish a man’s name; And a blameless wife is counted above both.

Children … establish a man’s name. You can name your child after yourself. In that way, your own name will live on after you have passed away.

the building of a city establish a man’s name. You can establish a city and name it for yourself. This is another way to have your own name persist after you have passed away.

 

VERSE 20. Wine and music rejoice the heart; And the love of wisdom is above both.

NAB translation. Wine and music delight the soul, but better than either, conjugal love.

better than either, conjugal love. A sexual relationship is a gift of God. It is a delight better than wine or music.

 

VERSE 21. The pipe and the lute make pleasant melody; And a pleasant tongue is above both.

a pleasant tongue is above both. That is, “better that either, a voice that is true.” Truth is always the best. We Christians know that Jesus Christ IS the truth:

John 14:6. Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father, except through me.

 

VERSE 22. Your eye shall desire grace and beauty; And above both the green blade of corn.

 

VERSE 23. A friend and a companion never meet amiss; And a wife with her husband is above both.

 

VERSE 24. Brethren and help are for a time of affliction; And almsgiving is a deliverer above both.

 

VERSE 25. Gold and silver will make the foot stand sure; And counsel is esteemed above them both.

counsel is esteemed above them both. Many people imagine that to be rich is the ultimate goal. However, there is something that is far superior to being rich. It is to have sound judgement.

 

VERSE 26. Riches and strength will lift up the heart; And the fear of the Lord is above both: There is nothing lacking in the fear of the Lord, And there is no need to seek help therein.

nothing lacking in the fear of the Lord. If you have a reverential fear of the LORD, you lack nothing.

Psalm 34:9. Fear the LORD, you his holy people, for those who fear him lack nothing. (NIV translation)

 

VERSE 27. The fear of the Lord is as a garden of blessing, And covers a man above all glory.

a garden of blessing. The fear of the Lord is a paradise of blessings.

 

VERSE 28. My son, lead not a beggar’s life; Better it is to die than to beg.

Better it is to die than to beg. The author is revulsed at begging. This is very contrary to the rest of the Bible. As we have seen in our study of Giving, the Bible commands us to befriend poor people and beggars. It commands us to assist them.

 

VERSE 29. A man that looks to the table of another, His life is not to be counted for a life; He will pollute his soul with another man’s meats: But a man wise and well-instructed will beware thereof.

 

VERSE 30. In the mouth of the shameless begging will be sweet; And in his belly a fire shall be kindled.

 


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Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.


 

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