The warning (Jer 11:7-11:8)

“I solemnly warned your ancestors

When I brought them up                                      

Out of the land of Egypt.

I warned them persistently,

Even to this day,

Saying.

‘Obey my voice!’

Yet they did not obey.

They did not incline their ear.

But everyone walked

In the stubbornness of an evil heart.

Therefore I brought upon them

All the words of this covenant,

That I commanded them to do.

But they did not.”

Yahweh explained in the first person singular to Jeremiah how he had warned their ancestors, when he brought them out of Egypt. He has consistently warned them even until the present day. They were to obey his voice. However, they did not obey since they did not listen. They all walked in the stubbornness of their evil hearts. Thus Yahweh asked them to hear the words of the covenant and observe them. However, they did not, so that is the problem.

The good and bad wife (Sir 26:22-26:27)

“A prostitute is regarded as spittle.

A married woman

Is a tower of death to her lovers.

A godless wife is given as a portion

To a lawless man.

But a pious wife is given

To a man who fears the Lord.

A shameless woman constantly

Acts disgracefully.

A modest daughter will even

Be embarrassed before her husband.

A headstrong wife is regarded as a dog.

But one who has a sense of shame

Will fear the Lord.

A wife honoring her husband

Will seem wise to all.

But if she dishonors him

In her pride,

She will be known to all

As ungodly.

Happy is the husband

Of a good wife.

The number of his years

Will be doubled.

A loud voiced wife is

Like a trumpet sound.

A garrulous wife is

Like a trumpet sounding the charge.

Every person like this,

Lives in the anarchy of war.”

This section, like the preceding, does not appear in some editions. Sirach once again distinguishes between the good and the bad wife. Of course, prostitutes are like spit. A married wife who has lovers is like the tower of death to them. These godless wives belong with lawless husbands. On the other hand, a pious wife is a gift to a husband who fears the Lord. The shameless wife consistently acts disgraceful, so that even her daughter is embarrassed when her husband is around. A headstrong wife is a like a dog. She needs to be brought under control. The wife who has a sense of shame fears the Lord. Wives who honor their husbands are seen as wise. However, the ungodly wives dishonor their husbands. If a man has a good wife, as above, his life span will be doubled. A loud and talky wife is like a trumpet sound in battle. They deserve to live in a war of anarchy. Thus the humble wife is the ideal.