Son of man,
To the house of Israel!
Measure the pattern!
Of their iniquities!’”
Yahweh told Ezekiel, the son of man, to describe this new Temple to the Israelites, the house of Israel. They should measure the patterns that he would lay out for them. They should also be ashamed of their iniquities. Clearly, Ezekiel was laying down the basics for the new Temple, just like Moses with his Mosaic laws.
Let your tears fall
For the dead!
As one in great pain,
Begin the lament!
Lay out the body
With due ceremony.
Do not neglect the burial.
Let your weeping be bitter!
Let your wailing be fervent!
Make your mourning
Worthy of the departed.
Do this for one day,
Be comforted for your grief.”
Sirach points out the importance of the correct ceremonial actions for the dead, like many of the ancient Middle Eastern societies. You should not be ashamed to cry for the dead, because you are in great pain. You should lay out the body according to the proper rituals. Make sure to bury the dead, a common topic in the biblical writings, especially Tobit. You can have bitter wailing and crying that is worthy of the departed person. Do this for a day or two to avoid criticism. There is no need for a long mourning period. However, in chapter 22, he said that there should be a 7 day mourning period for the dead. You should be comforted in your mourning for the dead.
“Then Job answered.
‘Today also my complaint is bitter.
His hand is heavy,
Despite my groaning.
O that I knew where I might find him!
O that I might come even to his dwelling!
I would lay my case before him.
I would fill my mouth with arguments.
I would learn what he would answer me.
I would understand what he would say to me.
Would he contend with me in the greatness of his power?
But he would give heed to me.
There an upright man could reason with him.
I should be acquitted forever by my judge.’”
Job was still bitter. Despite all his complaints, he still wanted to find God. He wanted to meet him face to face in his house. Then he would lay out his cause with many arguments. However, he would learn and understand by listening. He believed that he, the upright man, would get a fair hearing. In the end, he would be acquitted by God, if only he could present his case.