1 ‘O Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, a soul in straits and a spirit of weariness cries out to You.
2 Hear, O Lord, and have mercy, for we have sinned against You.
3 You endure forever, but we are perishing forever.
4 O Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, hear the prayer of the dead of Israel and of the sons who have sinned against You, who have not obeyed the voice of the Lord their God, so calamities have clung to us.†
5 Do not remember the wrongdoings of our fathers, but remember Your hand and Your name in this time.
6 For You are the Lord our God, and You we will praise, O Lord.
7 On account of this You granted in our hearts the fear of You, to call upon Your name, and we shall praise You in our exile, because we will turn away from our hearts all the iniquities of our fathers who sinned against You.
8 Behold, today we are in our exile, where You have scattered us to be a reproach and a curse and a punishment for all the iniquities of our fathers, who fell away from the Lord our God.’ ”
The Way of Wisdom
9 Hear, O Israel, the commandments of life; give ear to know wisdom.
10 Why is it, O Israel, that you are in the land of your enemies, that you have grown old in a foreign land,
11 that you are defiled with the dead and counted among those in Hades?
12 You have forsaken the fountain of wisdom.†
13 If you had walked in the way of God, you would have dwelt in peace forever.
14 Learn where wisdom is, where strength is, where understanding is, so at the same time you may know where length of days and life are, where peace is and the light of the eyes.
15 Who has found her place? Who has entered into her treasures?
16 Where are the rulers of the nations and those who ruled over the wild animals of the earth;
17 those who sport with the birds of the air and those hoarding silver and gold, in which men trust (and there is no end to the acquisition of these),†
18 those who scheme to obtain silver and are anxious, whose works are unsearchable?
19 They vanish and descend into Hades, and others have risen up to take their place.
20 Young men have seen the light and dwelt in the land, but they have not known the way of knowledge,†
21 nor practiced it, nor understood her paths; their sons are far from her path.
22 It has not been heard in Canaan, nor seen in Tamar;
23 the sons of Hagar, who seek understanding on the earth, the merchants of Merra and of Tamar, the storytellers and those who search out understanding—none of these have learned the way of wisdom nor remember her paths. They do not know.
24 O Israel, how great is the house of God, and how far-reaching the place He possesses!†
25 It is great and has no end; it is high and immeasurable.
26 The giants born there, those renowned from the beginning, being very large in size and skilled in war,†
27 God did not choose them nor grant them the way of knowledge.
28 Instead, they perished because they failed to attain to wisdom; they perished through their thoughtless counsel.
The Author of Wisdom
29 Who has gone up into heaven and taken hold of her, and brought her down from the clouds?†
30 Who has crossed the sea and found her, and brought her back for pure gold?
31 No one knows her way, nor does anyone ponder her path.
32 But the One who knows all things knows her; He has found her by His understanding—He who formed the earth for all time, who filled it with four-footed creatures;
33 the One who sends forth the light and it goes out; the One who calls to it, and it obeys with fear.
34 The stars shone in their watches and rejoiced.
35 He called them and they said, “Here we are!” They shone with gladness for Him who made them.
36 This is our God; no other shall be compared to Him.
37 He found the whole way of knowledge and gave it to Jacob His servant and to Israel His beloved.†
38 Afterwards, He was seen upon the earth and lived among men.
15 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His mercies, His wonders to the sons of men;
16 For He crushed the gates of bronze And shattered the bars of iron.
17 He helped them out of their lawless ways, For they were humbled because of their transgressions.
18 Their soul abhorred all manner of food, And they drew near the gates of death;
19 Then they cried to the Lord in their afflictions, And He saved them from their distresses;
20 He sent His Word and healed them, And delivered them from their corruptions.
21 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His mercies And His wonders to the sons of men,
22 And let them offer a sacrifice of praise; And let them proclaim His works with exceeding joy.
23 Those who go down to the sea in ships, Who do business in many waters,
24 These see the works of the Lord And His wonders in the deep;
25 He spoke, and a stormy wind arose, And its waves were lifted up;
26 They mount up to the heavens And descend into the deep; Their soul is consumed with evils;
27 They were troubled; they were shaken like one drunk with wine, And all their wisdom was consumed;
28 Then they cried to the Lord in their affliction, And He brought them out of their distresses.
29 He also commanded the storm, and it became a breeze, And its waves were still;
30 Then they were glad, for they were silent, And He guided them to the haven of their desire.
Proverbs of Solomon 23
24 Let your father and mother be glad in you, And let her who bore you rejoice.
25 My son, give me your heart, And let your eyes observe my ways;
26 For a house of prostitution is a pierced vessel And a strange and empty well;
27 For he shall perish suddenly, And every lawless man shall be destroyed.
1 Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God,†
2 of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.†
3 And this we will do if God permits.
4 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit,†
5 and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come,†
6 if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame.†
7 For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God;†
8 but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned.
Pursue the Promise with Persistence
9 But, beloved, we are confident of better things concerning you, yes, things that accompany salvation, though we speak in this manner.
10 For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.†
11 And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end,
12 that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.†
God Confirms the Promise by an Oath
13 For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself,†
14 saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.”
15 And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.
16 For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute.
17 Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath,
18 that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us .†
19 This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil,†
20 where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.†