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The New Oxford Annotated Bible New Revised Standard Study Bible that provides essential scholarship and guidance for Bible readers.

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Commentary on Sirach

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16.1–23 : The certainty of punishment for sin.

1–4 :

Ben Sira counters the notion that children are a sure sign of blessing (Prov 17.6; Ps 127.3–5 ) with the observation that sinful offspring will result in woe (cf. 40.15–16; 41.5–13 ).

6–8 :

The author refers to the fate of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram (v. 6; cf. 45.18–19; Num 16 ), the ancient giants of Gen 6.4 , and the people of Sodom (v. 8; Ezek 16.49–50; Gen 19 ).

9 :

Doomed nation, the Canaanites (see Lev 18.3; 24–25 ).

10 :

The six hundred thousand are the Israelites in the desert (cf. 46.8; Ex 12.37; Num 14.38 ).

11 :

Mercy and wrath, 5.6 .

12–14 :

God rewards every act of mercy and punishes wrongdoing (cf. 11.26; 29.11–12 ).

17–23 :

Despite the immensity of God's boundless creation, one should not think it is possible to escape God's attention (cf. 15.19; 17.15–24; Ps 139.7–18; Am 9.2–3 ).

18–19 :

See Judg 5.4–5; Ps 104.32 .

22 :

Cf. Deut 30.11–14 . Verse 23 pronounces judgment on the ideas expressed in vv.17–22 .

16.24–17.14 : God's wisdom in creation.

26 :

From the beginning, Gen 1.1; Prov 8.22–23 . Their boundaries, Ps 104.9 .

27b–28 :

Apparently referring to the heavenly bodies; cf. Ps 104.19 .

29 :

Good things, Gen 1.4,10,12, etc.; Ps 104.24,28 .

30 :

They must return, cf. 17.1; 40.11; Gen 3.19 .

17.1–14 :

The creation of human beings culminates in God's gifts of the law, covenant, and commandment (vv. 11–14 ).

1 :

Gen 3.19 .

2 :

Gen 1.28 .

3 :

Gen 1.26 .

4 :

Gen 1.28; 9.2 .

7 :

Cf. Gen 2.17; 3.5,22 .

11 :

The law of life, the laws of the covenant, Deut 30.15–20 .

12–13 :

Established … saw, on Mt. Sinai; Ex 19 .

14 :

The neighbor, Ex 20.13–17; Lev 19.18; Deut 5.17–21 .

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