Sirach 22:25

Deuterocanon (Ben Sira, Ecclesiasticus)

23 Gain the trust of your neighbor in his poverty, so that you may rejoice with him in his prosperity. Stand by him in time of distress, so that you may share with him in his inheritance. 24 The vapor and smoke of the furnace precede the fire; so insults precede bloodshed. 25 I am not ashamed to shelter a friend, and I will not hide from him. 26 But if harm should come to me because of him, whoever hears of it will beware of him. 27 Who will set a guard over my mouth, and an effective seal upon my lips, so that I may not fall because of them, and my tongue may not destroy me? Source

Date: 195-175 B.C.E. (based on scholarly estimates)

Ambrose On the Duty of the Clergy 2.7

Patristic

37 It gives a very great impetus to mutual love if one shows love in return to those who love us and proves that one does not love them less than oneself is loved, especially if one shows it by the proofs that a faithful friendship gives. What is so likely to win favour as gratitude? What more natural than to love one who loves us? What so implanted and so impressed on men's feelings as the wish to let another, by whom we want to be loved, know that we love him? Well does the wise man say: Lose your money for your brother and your friend. And again: I will not be ashamed to defend a friend, neither will I hide myself from him. If, indeed, the words in Ecclesiasticus testify that the medicine of life and immortality is in a friend; yet none has ever doubted that it is in love that our best defense lies. As the Apostle says: It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things; love never fails. Source

Date: 390-395 C.E. (based on scholarly estimates)
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