Wisdom of Solomon 16
1 Therefore they were worthily punished through creatures like these, And were tormented through a multitude of wild animals.†
2 Instead of such punishment You showed kindness to Your people And prepared quails as food with a delicious taste to satisfy their hunger,†
3 That those men, when they desired food, Might turn away their necessary hunger Because of the ugly look of the creatures sent upon them, While Your people, being in need for a brief period, Might partake of food with a delicious taste.
4 For it was necessary for those enemies That unavoidable need come upon them and tyrannize them, While to Your people it was only shown How their enemies were being tormented.
5 For even when the terrible rage of wild animals Came upon Your people, And they were being destroyed by the bites of twisting serpents, Your wrath did not continue to the end.†
6 They were troubled for a short while as a warning, And received a pledge of salvation In remembrance of Your law’s command.†
7 For the one who turned to it was saved, not by what he saw, But by You, the Savior of all.
8 So in this You persuaded our enemies That You are the One who saves from every evil.
9 For the bites of locusts and flies killed them, And no healing was found for their life, Because they deserved to be punished by such things.
10 But the teeth of poisonous serpents Did not overcome Your children, For Your mercy came to their aid and healed them.†
11 For they were goaded to remind them of Your oracles And were quickly saved, Lest they should fall into deep forgetfulness And be continually unmindful of Your kindness.
12 For neither herb nor medicinal plaster healed them, But it was Your word, O Lord, which heals all men.
13 For You have authority over life and death, And bring men down to the gates of Hades And lead them back again.†
14 A man in his malice kills another, But he cannot bring back a departed spirit Nor return a soul that is taken.
God Judges Egypt
15 To escape from Your hand is impossible,†
16 For the ungodly who refuse to know You Were flogged by the strength of Your arm. They were pursued by rains, hail, and thunderstorms And consumed by fire.
17 For the fire, very contrary to expectation, Was more effective in the water, which extinguishes everything; For the world is a defender of the righteous.
18 For at one time the flame was subdued That it might not burn up the creatures sent against the ungodly, But seeing this they might know That they were struck by the judgment of God;
19 And at another time even under water The flame burned more intensely than fire To destroy the harvest of the unrighteous land.
Bread from Heaven for Israel
20 Instead of these things You fed Your people the food of angels, And without their labor You provided them With ready-made bread from heaven, Fitting for every pleasure and suitable to every taste.†
21 For Your provision manifested sweetness toward Your people, And the bread served the need of those who took it And changed to what one wished.
22 Snow and ice endured fire without melting So they might know that fire destroyed the harvest of their enemies, The fire that burned in the hail And flashed like lightning in the rain—
23 Again that fire which forgot its own natural power That the righteous might be fed.
24 For the creation serves You who made it And increases its intensity to punish the unrighteous, But in kindness relaxes itself on behalf of those who trust in You.†
25 Therefore also at that time, It explored as though in a mine Your all-nourishing bounty And served the will of those who supplicated You,
26 That Your children whom You loved, O Lord, might learn That it is not the production of crops that feeds man, But Your word that maintains those who believe in You.
27 For what was not destroyed by fire Was melted when simply warmed by a small ray of the sun,
28 To make it known that one must get up before sunrise To give You thanks, And to intercede before You at the dawning of the light.
29 For the hope of an unthankful man will melt like the wintry frost And flow away like useless water.
1 A psalm by David, when he fled from the face of his son, Absalom. †
2 O Lord, why do those who afflict me multiply? Many are those who rise up against me.
3 Many are those who say to my soul, “There is no salvation for him in his God.” (Pause)
4 But You, O Lord, are my protector, My glory and the One who lifts up my head.
5 I cried to the Lord with my voice, And He heard me from His holy hill. (Pause)
6 I lay down and slept; I awoke, for the Lord will help me.
7 I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people Who set themselves against me all around.
8 Arise, O Lord, and save me, O my God, For You struck all those who were foolishly at enmity with me; You broke the teeth of sinners.
9 Salvation is of the Lord, And Your blessing is upon Your people.
1 For the End; in psalms; an ode by David. †
2 You heard me when I called, O God of my righteousness. You strengthened my heart when I was in distress; Have mercy on me, and hear my prayer.
3 How long, O you sons of men, Will you be slow of heart? Why do you love vain things And seek after lies?
4 Know that the Lord made His Holy One wondrous; The Lord will hear me when I cry to Him.
5 Be angry, and do not sin; Have remorse upon your beds For what you say in your hearts. (Pause)
6 Offer the sacrifice of righteousness, And hope in the Lord.
7 There are many who say, “Who will show us good things?” O Lord, the light of Your face was stamped upon us.
8 You put gladness in my heart; From their season of wheat, wine, and oil they were multiplied.
9 I will both sleep and rest in peace, For You alone, O Lord, cause me to dwell in hope.
Proverbs of Solomon 1
Wisdom Begets the Fear of God
6 He will understand both a parable and a hidden saying, Both wise words and riddles.†
7 The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom, And there is good understanding in all who practice it;†
8 And godliness toward God is the beginning of perception, But the ungodly despise wisdom and instruction.
9 Hear, my son, the instruction of your father, And do not reject the laws of your mother.†
10 For you will receive a crown of grace on your head And a gold chain around your neck.
The Apostles in Jerusalem
1 Now the apostles and brethren who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.
2 And when Peter came up to Jerusalem, those of the circumcision contended with him,†
3 saying, “You went in to uncircumcised men and ate with them!”
4 But Peter explained it to them in order from the beginning, saying:
5 “I was in the city of Joppa praying; and in a trance I saw a vision, an object descending like a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came to me.
6 When I observed it intently and considered, I saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air.
7 And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’
8 But I said, ‘Not so, Lord! For nothing common or unclean has at any time entered my mouth.’
9 But the voice answered me again from heaven, ‘What God has cleansed you must not call common.’
10 Now this was done three times, and all were drawn up again into heaven.
11 At that very moment, three men stood before the house where I was, having been sent to me from Caesarea.
12 Then the Spirit told me to go with them, doubting nothing. Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house.
13 And he told us how he had seen an angel standing in his house, who said to him, ‘Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon whose surname is Peter,†
14 who will tell you words by which you and all your household will be saved.’
15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning.
16 Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’
17 If therefore God gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God?”†
18 When they heard these things they became silent; and they glorified God, saying, “Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life.”
The Gentile Church: Antioch
19 Now those who were scattered after the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to no one but the Jews only.
20 But some of them were men from Cyprus and Cyrene, who, when they had come to Antioch, spoke to the Hellenists, preaching the Lord Jesus.†
21 And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord.
22 Then news of these things came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch.†
23 When he came and had seen the grace of God, he was glad, and encouraged them all that with purpose of heart they should continue with the Lord.
24 For he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord.
25 Then Barnabas departed for Tarsus to seek Saul.†
26 And when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people. And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch.†
Aid to Jewish Christians
27 And in these days prophets came from Jerusalem to Antioch.†
28 Then one of them, named Agabus, stood up and showed by the Spirit that there was going to be a great famine throughout all the world, which also happened in the days of Claudius Caesar.†
29 Then the disciples, each according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brethren dwelling in Judea.
30 This they also did, and sent it to the elders by the hands of Barnabas and Saul.†