December 09, 2002 Copyright © by United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
The Book of Wisdom
- 1 Love justice, you who judge the earth; think of the LORD in goodness, and seek him in integrity of heart;
- Because he is found by those who test him not, and he manifests himself to those who do not disbelieve him.
- For perverse counsels separate a man from God, and his power, put to the proof, rebukes the foolhardy;
- Because into a soul that plots evil wisdom enters not, nor dwells she in a body under debt of sin.
- 2 For the holy spirit of discipline flees deceit and withdraws from senseless counsels; and when injustice occurs it is rebuked.
- For wisdom is a kindly spirit, yet she acquits not the blasphemer of his guilty lips; Because God is the witness of his inmost self and the sure observer of his heart and the listener to his tongue.
- 3 For the spirit of the LORD fills the world, is all-embracing, and knows what man says.
- Therefore no one who utters wicked things can go unnoticed, nor will chastising condemnation pass him by.
- For the devices of the wicked man shall be scrutinized, and the sound of his words shall reach the LORD, for the chastisement of his transgressions;
- Because a jealous ear hearkens to everything, and discordant grumblings are no secret.
- 4 Therefore guard against profitless grumbling, and from calumny withhold your tongues; For a stealthy utterance does not go unpunished, and a lying mouth slays the soul.
- Court not death by your erring way of life, nor draw to yourselves destruction by the works of your hands.
- Because God did not make death, nor does he rejoice in the destruction of the living.
- For he fashioned all things that they might have being; and the creatures of the world are wholesome, And there is not a destructive drug among them nor any domain of the nether world on earth,
- For justice is undying.
- It was the wicked who with hands and words invited death, considered it a friend, and pined for it, and made a covenant with it, Because they deserve to be in its possession,
Table of Contents Introduction Next Chapter
1  Justice: not merely the cardinal virtue of that name (cf Wisdom 8:7), but the universal moral quality which is the application of Wisdom to moral conduct.
2  Discipline: here and elsewhere, another name for Wisdom; injustice: the opposite of the virtue in Wisdom 1:1.
3  This verse is applied to the Holy Spirit in the liturgy at Pentecost.
4  Calumny: speech against God and his providence is meant.
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