False friends (Sir 37:1-37:6)

“Every friend says.

‘I too am a friend.’

But some friends

Are friends only in name.

Is it not a sorrow

Like death itself?

A dear friend

Turns into an enmity.

O inclination to evil!

Why were you formed?

Why do you cover the land

With deceit?

Some companions rejoice

In the happiness of a friend.

But in times of trouble,

They are against him.

Some companions help a friend

For their stomach’s sake.

Yet in battle

They will carry his shield.

Do not forget a friend

In your heart

During the battle.

Do not be unmindful of him

When you distribute your spoils.”

Sirach reminds us about false friends. Some friends are such in name only. Sometimes a friend turns into an enemy. Sirach wondered why there was this inclination to evil. Why was the land covered with deceit? Some companions are happy when you are happy. However, in troubled times, they may be against you. Some people help for the sake of a good meal, while others will go to battle with you. You should not forget the friends who went out to battle with you, especially when you distribute the rewards or spoils of victory.

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Yahweh rewards David (Ps 18:20-18:24)

“Yahweh rewarded me,

According to my righteousness.

According to the cleanness of my hands,

He recompensed me.

I have kept the ways of Yahweh.

I have not wickedly departed from my God.

All his ordinances were before me.

His statutes I did not put away from me.

I was blameless before him.

I kept myself from guilt.

Therefore Yahweh has recompensed me,

According to my righteousness,

According to the cleanness of my hands in his sight.”

Once again, like 2 Samuel, chapter 22, Yahweh rewarded David for his righteousness. His hands were clean because he kept the ways of Yahweh. He never departed from God. He held all his statutes and ordinances before him. He was blameless and guiltless. Therefore Yahweh had compensated him because of his cleanliness. Yahweh had been good to him because David had followed him. David clearly was self righteous and felt that he deserved the rewards that he received from Yahweh.