Wisdom of Solomon 15
Our Merciful God
1 But You, our God, are kind, true, patient, And govern all things in mercy.
2 For even if we sin, we belong to You and know Your might; But we will not sin, Because we know that we are counted as belonging to You.
3 For to know You is complete righteousness, And to know Your might is the root of immortality.†
4 For neither have the evil practices of human art deceived us, Nor a form stained with diverse colors, The barren labor of painting,†
5 Whose appearance creates a desire in fools That longs for the lifeless form of a dead image.
6 Lovers of evil things and fit for such objects of hope Are those who either make or desire or worship them.
Idols of Clay
7 For even when a potter compresses soft earth, He laboriously forms each vessel for our service; But he models from the same clay Both vessels that serve clean uses and likewise those to the contrary. But what will be the function of one or the other Is the decision of the craftsman.†
8 So, working evil, he forms a worthless god from the same clay, He who a little while before was made from the earth And in a short while returns to the earth from which he was taken, When the soul that was loaned to him Is demanded in return at death.
9 But he is not concerned that he is about to be sick Or that his life will be ending shortly; So he competes with goldsmiths and melters of silver And imitates bronze-workers; And he considers it a glory that he forms false gods.
10 His heart is ashes, and his hope as cheap as dirt; And his life is more dishonored than his clay,†
11 Because he disregards the One who formed him, And who inspired him with an operative soul, And breathed into him a life-giving spirit.†
12 But he considered our life to be a plaything And life a festival held for profit; For he says, “One must make a living however one can, Even by evil means.”
13 For this man, more than all others, knows that he sins When he fabricates from earthly matter Easily broken vessels and carved images.†
The Egyptian Enemies
14 Yet more foolish and infantile are the enemies Who oppressed Your people,
15 Because they thought that all the idols of the nations were gods, Though these have neither the use of their eyes for vision, Nor noses for inhaling air, Nor ears to hear with, Nor fingers on their hands for touching; And their feet are useless for walking.†
16 For a man made them, And he whose spirit is borrowed formed them; For no man can form a god like himself.
17 A man who works a dead thing with lawless hands is mortal, For he is better than his objects of worship, Because he is alive, but they never are.
18 The enemies of Your people worship the most hateful animals, For they are worse than all others in stupidity.
19 Not even as animals are they so beautiful in appearance That one would desire them, But they escaped both the praise of God and His blessing.
1 Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the way of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the troublesome;†
2 But his will is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.
3 He shall be like a tree Planted by streams of waters, That produces its fruit in its season; And his leaf shall not wither, And whatever he does shall prosper.
4 Not so are the ungodly, not so, But they are like the dust the wind drives from the face of the earth.
5 Therefore the ungodly shall not rise in the judgment, Nor sinners in the counsel of the righteous;
6 For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the ungodly shall perish.
1 Why do the nations rage, And the people meditate on vain things?†
2 The kings of the earth set themselves, And the rulers gather together Against the Lord and against His anointed, saying,
3 “Let us break their bands, And cast away their yokes from us.”
4 He who sits in the heavens shall laugh at them; The Lord shall mock them.
5 Then shall He speak to them in His wrath And trouble them in His anger,
6 “But I was established as King by Him Over His holy hill of Zion, Declaring the Lord’s decree.
7 The Lord said to Me, ‘You are My Son, Today I have begotten You;
8 Ask of Me, and I will give You The nations for Your inheritance And the ends of the earth for Your possession.
9 You shall shepherd them with an iron staff; You shall shatter them like a potter’s vessel.’ ”
10 And now, O kings, understand; Be instructed, all you judges of the earth.
11 Serve the Lord with fear And rejoice in Him with trembling.
12 Lay hold of His instruction, lest the Lord be angry, And you perish from the righteous way When His fury shall be quickly kindled. Blessed are all who trust in Him.
Proverbs of Solomon 1
To Know Wisdom
1 The Proverbs of Solomon, the son of David, Who reigned in Israel,
2 To know wisdom and instruction, And to understand words of discernment;
3 To receive both subtlety of words, And to understand true righteousness and upright judgment;
4 So as to give astuteness to the simple, And both perception and understanding to a young man;
5 For a wise man who hears these things will be wiser, And the man of understanding will gain direction.
Peter Preaches to Gentiles
24 And the following day they entered Caesarea. Now Cornelius was waiting for them, and had called together his relatives and close friends.
25 As Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshiped him.
26 But Peter lifted him up, saying, “Stand up; I myself am also a man.”
27 And as he talked with him, he went in and found many who had come together.
28 Then he said to them, “You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation. But God has shown me that I should not call any man common or unclean.†
29 Therefore I came without objection as soon as I was sent for. I ask, then, for what reason have you sent for me?”
30 So Cornelius said, “Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing,†
31 and said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard, and your alms are remembered in the sight of God.
32 Send therefore to Joppa and call Simon here, whose surname is Peter. He is lodging in the house of Simon, a tanner, by the sea. When he comes, he will speak to you.’
33 So I sent to you immediately, and you have done well to come. Now therefore, we are all present before God, to hear all the things commanded you by God.”†
34 Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.†
35 But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.†
36 The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ—He is Lord of all—
37 that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached:
38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.†
39 And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom they killed by hanging on a tree.
40 Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly,
41 not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead.
42 And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead.
43 To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.”
The Gentile Pentecost
44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word.†
45 And those of the circumcision who believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also.
46 For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God. Then Peter answered,
47 “Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have? ”
48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then they asked him to stay a few days.