Sirach 3:17

Ben Sira, Ecclesiasticus

15 in the day of your distress it will be remembered in your favor; like frost in fair weather, your sins will melt away. 16 Whoever forsakes a father is like a blasphemer, and whoever angers a mother is cursed by the Lord. 17 My child, perform your tasks with humility; then you will be loved by those whom God accepts. 18 The greater you are, the more you must humble yourself; so you will find favor in the sight of the Lord. 20 For great is the might of the Lord; but by the humble he is glorified.

Augustine Confessions 13.21


But Your Word, O God, is the fountain of eternal life, and passes not away; therefore this departure is kept in check by Your word when it is said to us, Be not conformed unto this world, so that the earth may bring forth a living soul in the fountain of life — a soul restrained in Your Word, by Your Evangelists, by imitating the followers of Your Christ. For this is after his kind; because a man is stimulated to emulation by his friend. Be, says he, as I am, for I am as you are. Thus in the living soul shall there be good beasts, in gentleness of action. For You have commanded, saying, Go on with your business in meekness, and you shall be beloved by all men; and good cattle, which neither if they eat, shall they over-abound, nor if they do not eat, have they any want...

 Notes and References

"... As to Augustine’s use of the Book of Ecclesiasticus, it is striking that more than once he quotes a text that is somewhat different from the Vetus Latina, which for the Book of Ben Sira, serves as the traditional Latin text. Since Augustine’s quotations from the Book of Ben Sira have more than once been brought in line with the Greek translation, a thorough investigation into this phenomenon is needed in order to find out whether he had (some) knowledge of the Greek text of the Book of Ecclesiasticus. Apart from Speculum in which Augustine for his quotations from the Book of Ben Sira usually follows the Latin, in his other works he rather frequently appears to correct the Latin Ben Sira quotations according to the Greek. An investigation into this intriguing question would be very useful. Such an in depth inquiry should also take into full consideration whether, and to what extent, St. Augustine has been influenced by a text type of Ecclesiasticus that was already used by St. Cyprian and has even been given its own siglum (K) by Thiele ..."

Beentjes, Pancratius C. "Saint Augustine's Sermons 38-41 on the Book of Ben Sira" in Menken, M.J.J. (ed.) The Scriptures of Israel in Jewish and Christian Tradition: Essays in Honour of Maarten J.J. Menken (pp. 81-94) Brill, 2013

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