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hath but few days: but a good name endureth for ever. Accustom not thy mouth to swearing; neither use thyself to the naming of the Holy One. For as a servant that is continually beaten shall not be without a blue mark: so he that sweareth and nameth God continually shall not be faultless. Use not thy mouth to intemperate swearing, for therein is the word of sin.
Book of Wisdom.
The ear of jealousy heareth all things: and the noise of murmurings is not hid. Therefore be ware of murmuring, which is unprofitable, and refrain your tongue from backbiting; for there is no word so secret, that shall go for nought: and the mouth that belieth, slayeth the soul. Wisdom is a loving spirit: and will not acquit a blasphemer of his words: for God is witness of his reins, and a true beholder of his heart, and a hearer of his tongue. For the spirit of the Lord filleth the world: and that which containeth all things hath knowledge of the voice. Therefore he that speaketh unrighteous things cannot be
hid: neither shall vengeance, when it punisheth, pass by him. For inquisition shall be made into. the counsels of the ungodly: and the sound of his words shall come unto the Lord, for the manifestation of his wicked deeds.
Watching for riches consumeth the flesh, and the care thereof driveth away sleep. Watching care will not let a man slumber, as a sore disease breaketh sleep. Gold hath been the ruin of many, and their destruction was present. It is a stumbling block unto them that sacrifice unto it, and every fool shall be taken therewith. Set not thy heart upon goods unjustly gotten, for they shall not profit thee in the day of calamity. The goods of the unjust shall be dried up like a river, and shall vanish with noise, like a great thunder in rain. Be not at variance with a rich man, lest he overweigh thee: for gold hath destroyed many, and perverted the hearts of kings. A rich man beginning to fall is held up of his
friends: but a poor man being down, he is thrust also away by his friends. When a rich man is fallen, he hath many helpers: he speaketh things not to be spoken, and yet men justify him, the poor man slipped, and yet they rebuked him too; he spake wisely, and could have no place. When a rich man speaketh, every man holdeth his tongue, and, look, what he saith, they extol it to the clouds: but if the poor man speak, they say, What fellow is this? and if he stumble, they will help to overthrow him. Riches are good unto him that hath no sin, and poverty is evil in the mouth of the ungodly. Blessed is the rich that is found without blemish, and hath not Who is he? and we will call
gone him blessed for wonderful things hath he done among his people. Who hath been tried thereby, and found perfect? then let him glory. Who might offend, and hath not offended? or done evil, and hath not done it? Ilis goods shall be established, and the congregation shall declare his alms.
A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. He that trusteth in his riches shall fall, but the righteous shall flourish as a branch. Riches profit not in the day of wrath: but righte ousness delivereth from death. The rich and poor meet together: the Lord is the maker of them all. Labour not to be rich; cease from thine own wisdom. Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? for riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away, as an eagle toward heaven. For riches are not for ever: and doth the crown endure to every generation?
Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her; she will do him good and not evil all the days of her life. She seeketh wool, and
flax, and worketh willingly with her hands. She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar. She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her houshold, and a portion to her maidens. She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms. She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night. She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff. She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy. She is not afraid of the snow for her houshold: for all her houshold are clothed with scarlet. She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple. Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land. She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant. Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her houshold, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest