If you do good,
know for whom you do it,
and there’ll be gratitude
for your good deeds.
Do good to the godly,
and you will find a reward,
and if not from them,
then from the Most High.
There is nothing good
for those who continue to do evil
or for those who
don’t freely offer charity.
Give to the pious, but don’t assist sinners.
Do good to the humble,
but don’t give to the ungodly.
Hold back your bread,
and don’t give it to them,
since by it they might gain power
over you.
You will encounter twice as much evil
for all the good things
that you have done for them.
The Most High also hated sinners,
and he will repay the ungodly
with punishment.[a]
Give to good people,
and don’t assist sinners.
A friend is not avenged[b]
in prosperity,
and an enemy is not hidden
in adversity.
When people are prosperous,
their enemies are in pain,
and when they meet with adversity,
even friends will keep away.
10 Don’t ever trust your enemies;
for just as copper corrodes,
so their wickedness does as well.
11 If they are humbled
and walk away stooped over,
look after yourself,
and keep up your guard against them.
You will be to them
as one who polishes a mirror,
and you will know that it won’t be completely tarnished.
12 Don’t put them next to you;
they might overthrow you
and take your place.
Don’t sit them on your right side,
since they might seek your seat.
In the end you will understand my words,
and you will be pierced by what I’ve said.
13 Who pities a snake charmer
who gets bitten?
Or anyone who goes near wild beasts?
14 So it is with anyone
who goes near sinful people
and becomes involved in their sins.
15 They will remain with you for a time,
but if you waver, they won’t be loyal.
16 Enemies speak sweetly with their lips,
but in their hearts,
they plan to throw you into a ditch.
Enemies cry tears with their eyes,
but if they find an opportunity,
they won’t be able to
get enough blood.
17 If you meet up with trouble,
you will find them there ahead of you;
and appearing to help,
they will trip you.
18 They will shake their heads
and clap their hands,
and they will whisper many things
and change their faces.


  1. Sirach 12:6 LXXb adds and he is keeping them for the time of their punishment.
  2. Sirach 12:8 Heb is not recognized