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New American Bible

2002 11 11
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Chapter 46


1 Valiant leader was JOSHUA, son of Nun, assistant to Moses in the prophetic office, Formed to be, as his name implies, the great savior of God's chosen ones, To punish the enemy and to win the inheritance for Israel.


What glory was his when he raised his arm, to brandish his javelin against the city!


2 And who could withstand him when he fought the battles of the LORD?


Did he not by his power stop the sun, so that one day became two?


He called upon the Most High God when his enemies beset him on all sides, And God Most High gave answer to him in hailstones of tremendous power,


Which he rained down upon the hostile army till on the slope he destroyed the foe; That all the doomed nations might know that the LORD was watching over his people's battles. And because he was a devoted follower of God


3 and in Moses' lifetime showed himself loyal, He and CALEB, son of Jephunneh, when they opposed the rebel assembly, Averted God's anger from the people and suppressed the wicked complaint - 


Because of this, they were the only two spared from the six hundred thousand infantry, To lead the people into their inheritance, the land flowing with milk and honey.


And the strength he gave to Caleb remained with him even in his old age Till he won his way onto the summits of the land; his family too received an inheritance,


That all the people of Jacob might know how good it is to be a devoted follower of the LORD.


4 The JUDGES, too, each one of them, whose hearts were not deceived, Who did not abandon God: may their memory be ever blessed,


Their bones return to life from their resting place, and their names receive fresh luster in their children!


Beloved of his people, dear to his Maker, dedicated from his mother's womb, Consecrated to the LORD as a prophet, was SAMUEL, the judge and priest. At God's word he established the kingdom and anointed princes to rule the people.


By the law of the LORD he judged the nation, when he visited the encampments of Jacob.


As a trustworthy prophet he was sought out and his words proved him true as a seer.


He, too, called upon God, and offered him a suckling lamb;


Then the LORD thundered forth from heaven, and the tremendous roar of his voice was heard.


He brought low the rulers of the enemy and destroyed all the lords of the Philistines.


When Samuel approached the end of his life, he testified before the LORD and his anointed prince, "No bribe or secret gift have I taken from any man!" and no one dared gainsay him.


Even when he lay buried, his guidance was sought; he made known to the king his fate, And from the grave he raised his voice as a prophet, to put an end to wickedness.



1 [1-6] Joshua, whose name means "the Lord is savior" ( Sirach 46:1), was the instrument through which God delivered his people in miraculous ways ( Sirach 46:2-6) by destroying their enemies, whose land he gave to the Israelites as an inheritance ( Sirach 46:1).

2 [3] The battles of the LORD: cf Joshua 6-10.

3 [7-10] Caleb, who with Joshua advised Moses and the people in the desert to conquer Canaan, despite the counsel of their companion scouts and the rebellion of the people, merited to lead the Israelites of the succeeding generation into the Promised Land. Caleb in his old age received as his inheritance a portion of land which he himself had previously conquered; cf Joshua 15:13-14.

4 [11-20] Of the Judges praised and blessed for their fidelity to God in opposing idolatry, Samuel, a man of spotless integrity, was the greatest ( Sirach 46:11-12, 19). He was judge of the entire nation, and was also a prophet and priest who through his sacrificial offering obtained victory over the Philistines. He established the kingdom, anointed kings ( Sirach 46:13-18), and even after his death foretold the king's fate and put an end to wickedness ( Sirach 46:20).

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