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Sirach , CHAPTER 8

1

Contend not with an influential man, lest you fall into his power.

2

Quarrel not with a rich man, lest he pay out the price of your downfall; For gold has dazzled many, and perverts the character of princes.

3

Dispute not with a man of railing speech, heap no wood upon his fire.

4

Be not too familiar with an unruly man, lest he speak ill of your forebears.

5

Shame not a repentant sinner; remember, we all are guilty.

6

Insult no man when he is old, for some of us, too, will grow old.

7

Rejoice not when a man dies; remember, we are all to die.

8

Spurn not the discourse of the wise, but acquaint yourself with their proverbs; From them you will acquire the training to serve in the presence of princes.

9

Reject not the tradition of old men which they have learned from their fathers; From it you will obtain the knowledge how to answer in time of need.

10

Kindle not the coals of a sinner, lest you be consumed in his flaming fire.

11

Let not the impious man intimidate you; it will set him in ambush against you.

12

Lend not to one more powerful than yourself; and whatever you lend, count it as lost.

13

Go not surety beyond your means; think any pledge a debt you must pay.

14

Contend not at law with a judge, for he will settle it according to his whim.

15

Travel not with a ruthless man, lest he weigh you down with calamity; For he will go his own way straight, and through his folly you will perish with him.

16

Provoke no quarrel with a quick-tempered man, nor ride with him through the desert, For bloodshed is nothing to him; when there is no one to help you, he will destroy you.

17

Take no counsel with a fool, for he can keep nothing to himself.

18

Before a stranger do nothing that should be kept secret, for you know not what it will engender.

19

Open your heart to no man, and banish not your happiness.